MSA Class of 2018

Data Science Job Index

The Institute believes in the fundamental importance of understandings the job market when making a decision to pursue graduate education. To that end, we carefully and continuously monitor the local and national job markets for data scientists and provide this information publicly to aid prospective applicants in making a data-driven decision about enrolling in an analytics or data science degree program.

Too many articles written about the abundance of high-paying jobs for data scientists overestimate demand by reporting open positions using elementary search queries. By restricting search queries to entry-level positions, recently posted (within 30-days), and with an expected salary level above $80,000 [note: this criterion was relaxed in March 2023 due to changes in how employers report salary ranges], the data here provide a more accurate estimate of the employment market facing new analytics and data science graduates. Our research shows that naive queries (i.e., those without restrictions) overestimate the number of open positions by a factor of ten.

How many data scientists are there? The following figures provide real-time data on the number of employed data scientists and open positions in the U.S., North Carolina, and the Raleigh-Durham area. It’s important to note that positions with the job title “data scientist” (or some slight variation) represent only a fraction of the professional occupations requiring data science skills at the masters or doctoral level. However, as a job title that is growing in usage throughout industry, its increasing prevalence makes it a good barometer of changes over time in the overall job market for individuals who possess these skills.

Also, what is the demand for data scientists? The search criteria are generally limited to position openings for entry-level data scientists with salaries of $80,000 or higher posted in the past 30-days. To understand the full range of job positions (beyond “data scientist”) that our students typically qualify as analytics professionals, please download the MSA Employment Report for more details. It’s to be expected the trend in job postings will have seasonality.

National Data (U.S.)

North Carolina (NC)

Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill Region (RDU)

Density of Employed Data Scientists by Population (Per 100,000) and Geographic Area (Per 1,000 km2)

U.S. Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA) with population > 1 million people (n=56)

The Raleigh MSA ranks high among the top metro areas in terms of the number of data scientists per 100,000 population, and in terms of the geographic density (data scientists per square kilometer). Population sizes for the metro regions are based on U.S. Census Bureau 2017 estimates. There are 19 data scientists per 100,000 population, and 6 data scientists per square kilometer for the United States as a whole.

(Color indicates population density and size indicates geographic density; Select a city to see details.)