Kalibrr Hosts Gathering Centered on Building Data Science Teams
To open the second half of 2019, the only end-to-end recruitment solutions provider in Southeast Asia held another Kalibrr Communities event, this time centered on how to build “Your Tomorrow Team”
Last July 10, Kalibrr held a gathering with various human resources professionals at the Kickstart Ventures office’s event space. On the agenda was how to build a data science team to best benefit from the continued rise of the relatively new industry.
Numerous reports and publications consistently name data science as both among the top jobs in the world as well as among the fastest-growing. This is with good reason. In this online era of doing things, the interactive platforms we use regularly, be it Facebook, YouTube or Gmail, are left with our digital footprints.
It’s in these records, transaction logs, and queries where an unimaginable amount of data is generated and is subsequently gathered, sorted, and analyzed to help companies, government, and other organizations generate better sales, automate operational processes, and improve products and services, among others.
This is barely scratching the surface, and with the potential uses of data being considerably endless, demand for professionals proficient in the multidisciplinary field continues to grow. This is the reason why Kalibrr invited data science leaders to share their experience and insight on how companies can best build their “tomorrow team.
“As the data analysis team, you’re the no BS team. You tell things as it is.”
First upfront was FrieslandCampina (Alaska Milk Corporation) Country Business Intelligence & Analytics Head Marco Roño, who emphasized that companies cannot make do with having a token data science expert, and must seriously consider building an entire team of them in order to get the most out of their data efforts.
“We think a Data Scientist is someone we can plug in, and solve everything that your business needs. That’s a good way to burn that person, or even a handful of people, out. What you really need to do is build a complete end-to-end team that can overhaul the way your company consumes data.”
Roño elaborated that the best way to do this is to sit down and make careful consideration of what the company’s end-goals are when using data, and how that “one source of truth” can help in the direction, and overall structure, of the data science team.
"The first challenge is setting that one source of truth. Because without it, everyone on the team is looking for their own data, without a general sense of direction. All of us want to be data-driven companies, and the first step towards that is to determine what you really need in terms of business intelligence and analytics.”
“Data science is one of those fields which you can effectively test if someone can do it.”
Following Roño was PLDT Group Data Analytics Consultant Nick Huber who in turn mentioned how data science is indeed multidisciplinary, and its professionals have as much potential as the industry itself.
“The basis of all analytics is, basically, reporting. There was a funny shirt we had in Facebook, which said ‘Move fast and count things.’ Because you’re basically counting things. However, when you relegate your data team to just counting or reporting, you experience a lot of turnover. And this is ‘sayang’, because they are often capable of more.”
He mentioned that to make the most of the skills of a data science or analytics team, along with keeping them engaged in their work, is to not relegate them to working with one department, but rather allow them to be their own that contributes to others.
“A common question of HR is ‘where should data scientists sit in an organization?’ The answer is it’s cross-functional, where they don’t report to one department, allowing them to avoid biases and be more effective as, like Marco said, a no-BS team.”
“Data science is not new, but it has not been treated as a priority.”
On his end, Eskwelabs Co-Founder Aurelien Chu spoke of how the Philippines has been a little slow to adapt to the increasing demand in data science, and how it is the reason why he and his co-founders established their company.
“Data science underpins a fundamental global transition. It’s grown more than most (think tanks) have expected. In order to retain its edge, the Philippines needs to adapt. However, (right now) it is worse positioned to transition.”
Chu particularly emphasized how, as opposed to waiting on the labor market to catch up, they should take on the responsibility of producing the data science professionals they need, starting by focusing also on potential and not just existing skills.
“It’s not just the role of educational institutions to build the data science capacity of the market, but also the corporations. The field is changing so much, that it's not just about core qualifications. It’s also about other aspects like critical thinking and motivation, and being able to keep up with changes and advancements.”
Kalibrr Communities: “Your Tomorrow Team” was hosted by Agrabah Marketplace Co-Founder & Chief Partnerships Officer Jojo Gumino, who introduced the speakers as well as fielded questions from those in attendance after their presentations. The gathering concluded with a panel discussion moderated by Gumino, where the three speakers answered more questions from participants and elaborated further on their ideas and experiences building and working with data science teams.
To learn more about Kalibrr Communities, or to partner with Kalibrr for future events, contact [email protected].
Kalibrr is a technology company that aims to transform how candidates find jobs and how companies hire talent. Placing the candidate experience at the center of everything it does, the company continues to attract the best talent from all over, with more than 2 million professionals and counting. Kalibrr ultimately connects these talents to companies in search of their next generation of leaders.
The only end-to-end recruitment solutions provider in Southeast Asia, Kalibrr is headquartered in Makati, Philippines, with offices in San Francisco, California and Jakarta, Indonesia. Established in 2012, it has served over 18,000 clients, and is backed by some of the world’s most powerful start-up incubators and venture capitalists. These include Y Combinator, Omidyar Network, Patamar Capital, Wavemaker Partners, and Kickstart Ventures.