Statistical Programmer Career Overview & Outlook

Every scientific field needs statistical programmers, such as healthcare, finance, manufacturing, retail, and more. Statistical programmers play an essential role in the organization’s extensive data system.

They use programming languages like Python, R, Java, and SAS to get the job done. So, you might wonder: What is the salary of a statistical programmer? How to develop this career? Let’s answer all the questions via the article below.

Job Description

Statistical programmers are often confused with SAS programmers. Yet, the role of a statistical programmer is much larger than that of a SAS specialist.

What is a Statistical Programmer?

Statistical programmers are people who can use programming tools to create statistical programs. The primary purpose of these programs is to analyze, perform data-related experiments, and generate reports.

The statistical programmer’s task will often revolve around large organizational databases. After analyzing the database, they produce output data supporting the organization’s scientific research and business development.

Duties and Responsibilities

Statistical programmers will build support programs for working with large databases. Their detailed duties, obligations, and expectations are:

  • Write statistical programs and optimize the program as required.
  • Use a statistical program to check the quality of the dataset.
  • Plan periodic statistical analysis, and review the plan.
  • Prepare outlines and statistical research reports.
  • Closely follow the projects of building statistical programs and building assigned data sets.
  • Quality control of analytical datasets.
  • Train employees on how to use statistical programs and work processes.
  • Develop standard operating procedures.

Where Do Statistical Programmers Work?

Where do statistical programmers work?

Due to their work nature, statistical programmers often spend time in the office.

They will work regular office hours and collaborate with programmers, research scientists, and customers. During their work, statistical programmers are committed to maintaining information security.

In addition to working in the office, statistical programmers can also appear at conferences and meetings.

Education Requirements

People pursuing this career need to be knowledgeable in two relatively complex areas: programming and statistics. The education, certification, and work experience requirements all relate to these two key areas.

Education & Training

Agencies recruiting for the statistical programmer position usually require candidates to possess a bachelor’s degree. Those pursuing this job should have a bachelor’s degree in statistics, computer technology, or a related field.

To apply for important positions or work for large companies, you should have a master’s or doctoral degree in statistics or computer science.

Employers will be impressed with candidates with excellent math skills and previous experience working with data.

Work Experience

Immediately after being hired, statistical programmers often receive company training to acquire competencies that match the company’s characteristics.

Training time can last up to several months depending on software complexity and computer system.

Employers may accept candidates with no work experience in the field. Some other sites are looking for candidates for two years working as a software programmer, data processing, and report generation.


People who do this job need to have both programming skills and analytical skills. To demonstrate these skills, owning certifications related to programming languages and data analysis is essential.

People who do this job will use a statistical analysis system or SAS. Hence, SAS is a certificate you can consider owning to demonstrate to employers.

Essential Skills

What are the key skills to consider for a statistical programmer?

Statistical programming is an exciting job. Yet, being successful in this field takes work. In addition to knowledge, you have to hone many skills to work effectively.

Hard Skills

This career combines the programmer and statistical data analyst duties. So, applicants must have a solid knowledge of the following matters:

  • Data analysis: A statistical programmer needs to analyze data like a data scientist. They must be able to process, present and interpret data.
  • Programming languages: Statistical programmers create programs for data analysis and representation purposes. So, they must be proficient in at least one programming tool, such as Python or SQL.
  • Database management: In addition to building programs to help interpret data, statistical programmers must create and maintain databases. Hence, those who do this job need to have the same knowledge and skills as a database administrator.

Soft Skills

In addition to expertise, to work effectively, statistical programmers need to possess other skills, such as

  • Communication
  • Collaborate with teams
  • Problem-solving skills.
  • Attention to detail.
  • Analytical skills.

Essential Tools

There are many tools for statistical programmers. Here are the most common that anyone who intends to pursue this career must master.

Git and GitHub

The typical task statisticians do a test and build code daily. Advanced operations such as branching and merging are also often available to create high-quality statistical software.

And Git and Github are tools you can use to master source control repositories. This tool is essential for programmers, including data analysis programmers.


Data analyst programmers must be proficient in at least one programming language. SQL is the standard language in which a programmer should be fluent.

SQL’s most significant advantage over any other language is its support for users using real-world databases. In addition, it is also a relatively simple programming language, capable of intuitively presenting data in tables.

You will have to master the basic commands of this language. In addition, you must also know how to perform complex queries and other advanced features.


R is a software package that simplifies your data processing. Typically, scientists who study human behavior will be pretty fond of R. However, R can now also be available for many other fields related to economics and science.

R is open-source statistical software. Hence it is improving day by day. You can join the community of R programmers to collect more plugins that serve your work requirements well.


MatLab is a platform loved by engineers and scientists alike. The platform supports data analysis and the use of programming languages.

For starters, Matlab is quite a complex platform to use. However, if you are good at coding or understand the essential toolbox, you will get the most out of Matlab for your business tasks.


Data statistical programmers often appreciate Minitab quite highly. This software provides simple, quite advanced, and useful statistical tools.

You can use scripts to analyze data quickly. Or you can also use the GUI to perform more complex analyses.

GraphPad Prism

Statistical programmers working in biology often use GraphPad Prism. This fairly powerful software automates all the complex statistical operations. Its user interface is quite simple and suitable for many different users.


SAS is no longer a strange software program for statistical data programmers. Its main features are geared toward supporting data analysis and visualization.

Most companies and businesses use this software in building and maintaining their extensive databases.

Job Outlook

What is the job outlook of a statistical programmer?

Job opportunities with data statisticians are attractive. Data statistics will grow 23% in 10 years from 2020 to 2030.

This positive growth comes from the fact that big data is now more attractive to companies than ever. In particular, mastering the database in the business field will help companies develop significantly. So, companies always need to recruit employees who can analyze and build data visualization and analysis systems.

Your job prospects are even more comprehensive if you have language certifications and SAS programs.


The salary received by a statistical programmer will include a fixed salary and additional bonuses for each project. The total amount each programmer gets will depend on their education, experience, and company regulations.

According to our report, a statistical programmer’s average salary is $95,000/year. The top 10% of earners earn $205,000 a year, and you need to know statistical programming languages, soft skills, and years of experience to be on this list.

Job opportunities for statistical programmers will continue to increase in the coming years. Therefore, the salary for this position will be even more attractive.

Advantages and Disadvantages

Statistical programming is a job with good growth prospects and an attractive salary. Yet, this job has some challenging disadvantages.

Before pursuing a career-oriented career as a statistical programmer, consider the pros and cons below in detail.


  • Good welfare.
  • Usually not much stress
  • Job opportunities are wide open.
  • Can move to more specialized jobs.
  • Collaborate with many different audiences.


  • Learn many languages with great difficulties, like SAS.


Is statistical programming a promising career?

The short answer is yes. Data statistician is a pretty lucrative job.

The average salary you get when working as a data statistics programmer is relatively high. You will have more job opportunities if you can work at any scientific research or business establishment.

Working as a data statistics programmer, you will have the opportunity to collaborate with many departments. Connecting with intelligent and interesting people is also an advantage worth considering in this career.

Do statisticians use coding?

Statistical programmers need to be able to code. Most of the positions for this job require the candidate to know at least one form of statistical programming language. Knowledge and proficiency in languages ​​like R will help you quickly find an appointment with a dream salary.

Do statisticians use Python?

Python is a language that any programmer, including statistical programmers, needs to know and understand. This language is beneficial for use in the statistical area. You can use it to visualize data and build business models.

Is Python a statistical programming language?

Python is a programming language that can be available for many different projects. In addition to data statistics, you can use R to complete other real-world programming projects.

What makes an excellent statistical programmer?

A superb statistical programmer must understand programming languages ​​and analyze and visualize data. People who do this job also have to be curious about every problem to improve how the system works.

What are the 3 types of statistics?

The three main types are descriptive statistics, inferential statistics, and example statistics. Descriptive statistics and inferential statistics are two essential branches of statistics.

What kind of math is in statistics?

The most widely used statistical operations are differential, integral, linear algebra, and probability theory.

What is the role of a statistical programmer?

Statistics programmer roles include:

  • Validate the dataset.
  • Develop support programs for statistical analysis.
  • Perform monitoring and testing to ensure that large databases operate stably and are always secure.
  • Connect with statisticians, clients, and team members to complete the proposed project.

Where do statisticians get paid the most?

At Medidata Solutions, statisticians are paid $181,903 per year on average. Some other well-known companies in the United States, such as Bayer or Barclays, pay their statisticians an average salary of more than $150,000 per year.

What is the difference between a SAS programmer and a statistical programmer?

SAS programmers are just a tiny branch of statistical programmers.

A SAS programmer can act as an expert. Meanwhile, a statistical programmer is a person with general knowledge who can become a leader and oversee the work.

Career Advice

Statistical programmers is a demanding job. To get high praise from employers, you need to have a master’s degree in statistics, knowledge, and experience.

You will also have to master complex tools like SAS and Matlab. After overcoming these difficulties, you will receive a decent salary and excellent remuneration.

Hence, consider your career path to become a statistical programmer. You will surely make the best choice by carefully considering the information in the article and your personal wishes.

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