By Rohit Manglik,
Karl Pearson, an English Mathematician, often referred to as the father of Statistics, once famously said,
“Statistics is the Grammar of Science.”
Almost all scientific fields use statistics for determining the latest trends and behaviours of demographics on a macro scale. Statistical tools also aid nations and companies to formulate their policies. So today, on the birth ceremony of Professor PC Mahalanobis, a member of the first Planning Commission of India who gave the concept of Mahalanobis distance, commemorated throughout the nation as The National Statistics Day, we see the prospect of Statistics as a career option.
The skillset of a trained statistician includes data mining, forecasting through probabilistic variables, predictive modelling, and parametric estimations, all of which work together in helping the statistician arrive at a coherent prediction. Pursuing statistics as a career option demands the following skillset
- Proficient Mathematical Abilities
- Analytical & Problem-Solving
- Drafting comprehensible reports for individuals with a non-statistics background
- Familiarity with Algorithms and Machine Learning
- Business Understanding
A wide array of computer skills, including programming languages (C, R, SAS, C++, Python, SQL, Hive, Perl, Java)
A person looking to pursue a career in Statistics must develop an interest in analytical thinking and mathematics from an early age. Upskilling is a must to build a professional career in statistics.
Fields of Study:
There are primarily two fields of study in Statistics. A sound and scientific solution is essentially derived based on both of these branches.
Inferential Statistics- To analyse raw and random data collected from a population to predict the population’s behaviour, characteristics, and attributes.
Descriptive Statistics- Herein, the extracted data is analysed to understand the composition of the population, often through numerical and pictorial representations (Like Graphs and Charts).
Courses and Degrees:
Many Bachelors, Masters, Doctoral and other certificate and Diploma programs are available in statistics both in India and abroad. Prestigious institutions like Indian Statistical Institute and other reputed institutes provide courses and degrees in statistics.
Data Scientist- The responsibilities of a data scientist include analysing data and rearranging it into comprehensible information. This data is aids organisations in informed decision-making.
Statisticians- Statisticians conduct surveys and experiments for better insight into a demographic and then use either the already established or come up with new theories to provide a sustainable solution to problems. They further translate their findings for others to understand.
Business Analyst- A business analyst is responsible for analysing business-centric problems through financial statements and labour reports. They also provide solutions for the said problems through cooperative efforts with other personnel in the organisation. Business Analysts often work in tandem with Project Heads to quantify and manage resources to complete projects within the time frame.
Financial analyst- Such personnel assist both individuals and organisations in making sound financial decisions. They review stock and share prices and analyse market trends to better forecast future market outcomes. They also work with corporate representatives to devise an effective investment strategy for organisations.
Cost estimator- The role involves forecasting the costs of a commodity offered by the organisation or a project in the organisation’s undertaking. Such personnel evaluate the costs by considering many diverse elements and variables like Budget, Human Resources, Time, etc.
Indian Statistical Officers- Indian Statistical Services is a coveted career option for those who wish to work in the government sector. Conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC), the recruitment process consists of a written examination and a personality interview. This service falls under Grade A and includes overseeing official statistics to supplement the policy-making and various other functions of the Government of India.
Actuary- These professionals manage financial risks and liabilities for organisations. Their responsibilities include risk management, financial modelling, product pricing, peer reviews, valuations, etc.
Future and Scope in Statistics
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the jobs for mathematicians and statisticians are expected to increase by 33% between 2016 and 2026. The proliferation of Big Data and other emerging data analysis techniques implies that the statistics’ scope will increase in the near future. Data Science, Biostatistics, and Applied Statistics are emerging disciplines poised to witness a surge in demand on the back of growing environmental consciousness, the emergence of new-age technologies and focus on the application of data to make informed decisions.
(The author is CEO, EduGorilla. Views expressed are personal and do not reflect the official position or policy of the Financial Express Online.