Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Dave McDonald from Smart Futures to give some advice for people considering this job:

Dave McDonald

Astronomer

Smart Futures

Read more

Dave McDonald

A caring attitude is essential for Health and Safety – you need to be passionate about getting the message across to people and telling them why it is so important. After all, no-one wants to see anyone suffer harm or be in pain.

For astronomy, a yearning for answering the unanswered questions is a must. You also need to be dedicated and focused and not put off by the weather

Close

Enterprising?
Enterprising
Enterprising people like situations that involve using resources for personal or corporate economic gain. Such people may have an opportunistic frame of mind, and like commerce, trade and making deals. Some are drawn to sales and marketing occupations. Many will eventually end up owning their own business, or managing a section in larger organisations. They tend to be very goal-oriented, and work best when focused on a target. Some have an entrepreneurial inclination.
Career Interviews
Sector Profiles
School Subjects (LC)
College Courses
Close
Study Skills
Other
Work Experience (School)
CV & Interview Preparation

Occupation Details

logo imagelogo image

Big Data Specialist

Job Zone

Education
Most of these occupations require post-graduate qualifications. For example, they may require a masters degree, and some require a Ph.D., or M.D.

Related Experience
Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience are needed for these occupations. Many require more than five years of experience. For example, surgeons must complete four years of college and an additional five to seven years of specialised medical training to be able to do their job.

Job Training
Employees may need some on-the-job training, but most of these occupations assume that the person will already have the required skills, knowledge, work-related experience, and/or training.

Job Zone Examples
These occupations often involve coordinating, training, supervising, or managing the activities of others to accomplish goals. Very advanced communication and organisational skills are required. Examples include librarians, lawyers, aerospace engineers, wildlife biologists, school psychologists, surgeons, treasurers, and most scientists.

€65k > 80
Big Data Developer
Salary Range
(thousands per year)*
€65 - 80
Related Information:
Data Source(s):
Sigmar

Last Updated: April, 2015

* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
Return to List
Saves this course to your Career File if you are registered.

At a Glance... header image

Works with the collection and analysis of massive amounts of data obtained from computer and internet users.


Videos & Interviews header image

Follow the links below to watch videos related to this occupation:

Note: you will be leaving the CareersPortal Site


Go..Search YouTube for Big Data Specialist videos

The Work header image

Big data generally is defined as a collection of large datasets that cannot be analyzed with normal statistical methods. The datasets are so big, they are measured in exabytes—one quintillion (1 followed by 18 zeroes) bytes. By comparison, an mp3 song is typically less than 10 megabytes (1 followed by 6 zeroes)

The data do not have to be just numbers; they can be videos, pictures, maps, words and phrases, and so on. Examples of big data include customer reviews on commercial websites, comments on social networking websites, photos and videos posted online, electronic medical records, and bank records. There are two types of big data: structured and unstructured.

Structured data are numbers and words that can be easily categorized and analyzed. These data are generated by things like network sensors embedded in electronic devices, smartphones, and global positioning system (GPS) devices. Structured data also include things like sales figures, account balances, and transaction data.

Unstructured data include more complex information, such as customer reviews from commercial websites, photos and other multimedia, and comments on social net - working sites. These data cannot easily be separated into categories or analyzed numerically.

Occupations

There are lots of occupations that work with big data in one way or another. The job tasks of these workers are evolving, as are their job titles. Several occupations that might work with big data are described below, along with their relevant job tasks.

Managers who work with big data are known as chief data officers or chief information officers. They create the policy for how their organization will use data, as well as supervise the analysts, computer programmers, and other workers.

Third Level teachers who use big data usually instruct students in statistical analysis and computer science. These teachers may have a lot of expertise and experience working with big data but choose to help new generations of workers develop their skills to enter the workforce.

Software developers have an important role in working with big data. They write the computer programs that aggregate, process, analyse, and visualize the data, along with the trends and other useful information that can be found in those data. Software developers generally are not associated with a single industry but create computer programs for use across industries for lots of different data. They may explore alternative sources of data and alter their programs to work with specific kinds.

Other emerging titles include:

Data Analyst - performs analysis of data and works out how the findings of the analysis can best be applied to profit the business. Data Analysts may have a degree such as BS in Mathematics, Economics, or Computer Science. People in this role in the business field may undertake an MBA.

Data Change Agents - drives changes in internal operations and processes based on data analytics. A Level 7 Degre in Computer Science is a typical starting point to career in this sector. A background in Six Sigma and knowledge of statistics would be beneficial.

Data Engineer/Operator - responsible for the day-to-day operation of Big Data computer systems.

Data Scientist - takes the lead in processing raw data and determines what type of analysis would deliver the best results. Draws on maths, computing, science, statistics and sociology to interpret information and produce insights. Typically has a background that includes maths and statistics, as well as artificial intelligence and natural language processing.

Data Steward - manages the quality and security of an organisation's information. A Bachelor Degree at NFQ Level 7/8 or higher and industry specific experience in the areas of IT, business, or finance would be required.

Data Virtualisation - Cloud Specialist - builds and maintains a virtualised data service layer that can draw data from any source and make it available across organisations in a consistent, easy-to-access manner. A Level 7 degree or greater in computer science or maths opens up many career opportunities across the IT sector. May have a traditional programming, database administ&


Personal Qualitiesheader image

People working with Big Data need patience and enjoy the challenges of solving complex problems. In particular they need:

Problem-solving skills are important for working with big data. Analysts have to create new ways of doing things that account for the different kinds of data and the large scope of the datasets.

Communication skills - Working with big data is highly technical, but workers need to be able to clearly explain their results to other workers. And many times, those other workers may not be as data- savvy as the analysts.

Teamwork - The ability to collaborate and work well with others also is helpful in big data jobs. Work is usually spread among teams of analysts because the data are so complex. Each member of the team has a different responsibility: organizing the data, using software for analysis, or making graphics of the results, for example. It takes the entire team to complete a project.


Related Occupationsheader image

Contactsheader image

bullet

Organisation: INSIGHT - National Centre for Data Analytics
Address: Joint initiative between UCD, NUIG, UCC, and DCU
Tel: Various - See website
Email: Click here
Url Click here

bullet

Organisation: Irish Centre for High-End Computing (ICHEC)
Address: 7th Floor Tower Building Trinity Technology & Enterprise Campus Grand Canal Quay Dublin 2 Ireland
Tel: (01) 5241608 (ext 21)
Email: Click here
Url Click here

bullet

Organisation: Centre for Applied Data Analytics Research (CeADAR)
Address: CeADAR University College Dublin NexusUCD Belfield Office Park, Unit 9, Clonskeagh, Dublin 4
Tel: (01) 716 5713
Email: Click here
Url Click here

Job Search


Industry Expert


Career Articles

Devin Scannell - Engagement Manager
Big Data and Analytics Top Tech Jobs
Big Data, Big Goals, Big Rewards,
So you want to be a Data Scientist?
What a Data Analyst does

Career Guidance

This occupation is popular with people who have the following Career Interests...


...and for people who like working in the following Career Sectors:

Computers & ICT
Business Organisation & Business Management

Search for Related Courses from Qualifax - the National Learners Database

Go..


Higher Ed & CAO Course suggestions
If you are interested in this occupation, then the following courses may also be of interest. Note that these course suggestions are not intended to indicate that they lead directly to this occupation, only that they are related in some way and may be worth exploring.
Courses found: 171
Applied Computing
Waterford IT
Arts - Computer Science
Maynooth University
Arts - Computer Science
University College Cork (NUI) - UCC
Arts - Information and Social Computing
UCD (NUI)
Arts - Information Technology
NUI Galway
Bachelor of Science in Computing (Cavan Institute)
Cavan Institute
Business Analytics
DIT
Business and Information Technology
IT Blanchardstown
Business and Information Technology
IT Blanchardstown
Business and Technology
Dundalk IT
Business Computing
Limerick IT
Business Computing
Dublin IT - DIT
Business Computing - Cancelled
Athlone IT
Business in Information Technology
Dublin Business School
Business Information Systems
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Business Information Systems
Dublin Business School
Business Information Systems
NUI Galway
Business Information Systems
NCI
Business Information Systems
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Business Information Systems
Cork Institute of Technology
Business Information Systems
UCC (NUI)
Business Information Systems (Cloud Computing)
Dublin Business School
Business Studies (Office Information Systems)
IT Tralee
Business Technology
Limerick IT
Cloud Computing
Dublin Business School - DBS
Computational Problem solving and Software Development - Cancelled
Dublin City University - DCU
Computational Thinking (Computer Science, Maths & Philosophy
Maynooth University
Computer and Electronic Engineering
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Computer Applications
DCU
Computer Engineering
IT Blanchardstown
Computer Engineering
IT Blanchardstown
Computer Engineering
Athlone IT - AIT
Computer Engineering in Mobile Systems
IT Blanchardstown
Computer Forensics & Security
Waterford IT
Computer Games Development
IT Carlow
Computer Games Development
Letterkenny IT
Computer Games Technology
Griffith College. Dublin
Computer Networks and Systems Management
Limerick IT
Computer Science
UCC (NUI)
Computer Science
UCD (NUI)
Computer Science
TCD
Computer Science
DIT
Computer Science (Infrastructure)
DIT
Computer Science (International)
DIT
Computer Science / Multimedia, Mobile and Web Development (through Arts)
Maynooth University
Computer Science / Multimedia, Mobile and Web Development (through Arts)
Maynooth University
Computer Science / Multimedia, Mobile and Web Development (through Science)
Maynooth University
Computer Science / Multimedia, Mobile and Web Development (through Science)
Maynooth University
Computer Science and Business
TCD
Computer Science and Information Technology
NUI Galway
Computer Science and Language
TCD
Computer Security and Digital Forensics
Letterkenny IT
Computer Systems Management
IT Carlow
Computing
Dundalk IT
Computing
IT Carlow
Computing
IT Sligo
Computing
IT Tallaght
Computing
Letterkenny IT
Computing
Griffith College. Limerick
Computing
Dublin Business School
Computing
Griffith College. Limerick
Computing
Dundalk IT
Computing
Computing
NCI
Computing
Cork Institute of Technology
Computing
IT Tallaght
Computing
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing & Multimedia
Computing & Multimedia
Dorset College
Computing & Multimedia
Computing & Multimedia
Dorset College
Computing & Multimedia
Dorset College
Computing (Applications, Commercial Programming or Networking)
IT Carlow
Computing (Common Entry)
Letterkenny IT
Computing (Information Technology)
IT Blanchardstown
Computing (Information Technology)
IT Blanchardstown
Computing (Information Technology)
IT Blanchardstown
Computing (Thurles)
Limerick IT
Computing - Games Design and Development (Thurles)
Limerick IT
Computing - Games Development
IT Sligo
Computing - Software Development
IT Sligo
Computing - Systems and Networking
IT Sligo
Computing and Digital Media
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Computing and Digital Media
Galway-Mayo IT - GMIT
Computing for Business - Cancelled
Athlone IT - AIT
Computing In Applications and Support
NCI
Computing in Games Development
Dundalk IT
Computing in Information Technology
Computing in Information Technology
College of Computer Training
Computing in Information Technology Support
Letterkenny IT
Computing in Software Development
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Computing in Software Development
Galway-Mayo IT - GMIT
Computing Science
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing Science
Griffith College. Cork
Computing Science (Cloud Computing)
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing Science (Games Development)
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing Science (Network Management)
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing Science (Software Development)
Griffith College. Dublin
Computing Systems Management
IT Carlow
Computing Technologies (Common Entry)
University of Limerick - UL
Computing with Data Analytics
IT Tallaght - ITT
Computing with Games Development
IT Tralee
Computing with Games Development
IT Tralee
Computing with Languages
IT Tallaght - ITT
Computing with Media Development
IT Tralee
Computing with Media Development
IT Tralee
Computing with Software Development
IT Tralee
Computing with Software Development
IT Tralee
Creative Computing
Dun Laoghaire IADT
Cybercrime and IT Security
IT Carlow
Cybercrime and IT Security
IT Carlow
Data Analytics and Big Data
Dublin Business School - DBS
Data Science
DCU
Digital Forensics and Cyber Security
IT Blanchardstown
Digital Forensics and Cyber Security
Electronic and Computer Engineering
University of Limerick
Electronic and Computer Engineering
IT Sligo
Electronic and Computer Engineering
IT Sligo
Electronic and Computer Engineering
DCU
Electronic and Computing Engineering
NUI Galway
Electronic/Computer Engineering (Common Entry)
Letterkenny IT
Electronics and Communications Engineering
DIT
Electronics and Computer Engineering
Athlone IT - AIT
Engineering Informatics
Athlone IT - AIT
Enterprise Computing
DCU
Game Art and Design (Clonmel)
Limerick IT
Game Development
Games Design
DIT
Information Systems Management
IT Tralee
Information Systems/Information Technology
DIT
Information Technology
College of Computing Technology
Information Technology
Waterford IT
Information Technology
College of Computer Training
Information Technology
IT Tallaght
Information Technology
Cork Institute of Technology
Information Technology - Online Flexible Learning
DCU
Information Technology Management
IT Tallaght
Information Technology Support - Castlebar
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Internet of Things
Waterford IT
Internet Systems Development
Limerick IT
Internet Systems Development
Limerick IT
IT Management
Cork Institute of Technology
Management of IT & IS - Online Flexible Learning
DCU
Management Science and Information Systems Studies
TCD
Marketing (Digital Media and Cloud Computing)
Dublin Business School
Multimedia
DCU
Multimedia
Cork Institute of Technology
Multimedia Applications Development
Waterford IT
Multimedia Programming and Design
Limerick IT
Multimedia Web Development - Cancelled
Dundalk IT - DKIT
Music Technology
IT Tralee
Music Technology
Maynooth University
Music Technology and Production
Limerick IT
Networking Technologies
DIT
Robotics and Intelligent Devices
Maynooth University
Science in Business Computing
NCI
Software Design (Game Development or Cloud Computing)
Athlone IT - AIT
Software Development
IT Carlow
Software Development
Cork Institute of Technology
Software Development
Limerick IT
Software Development
IT Carlow
Software Development (Mobile Apps and Connected Devices)
Athlone IT - AIT
Software Development and Computer Networking
Cork Institute of Technology
Software Systems Development
Waterford IT
Sustainable Building Technology
GMIT - Galway-Mayo IT
Theoretical Physics
TCD
Theoretical Physics and Mathematics
Maynooth University
Web and Cloud Technology
Dublin Business School
Web Development
Cork Institute of Technology
Web Development and Creative Media
IT Sligo