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5 Must Have Big Data Skills to Land Top Big Data Jobs in 2018



Big Data Skills – The key to a prosperous new year 2018 for professionals in the IT industry”

It turns out, there’s a magic wand to land a top gig in today’s IT work force. Two Words: “Data Skills”. A quick search for the term “Big Data” on any of the popular job portals will pop-up thousands of results with variety of open job positions titled – big data developer, hadoop developer, big data engineer, and data analytics engineer, reflecting the outpouring demand for professionals with big data expertise. With machines having access to even more data, and machine learning algorithms replacing human decision making, big data is anticipated to become the base of business competition in future. What makes a career in the big data domain furthermore interesting apart from the huge skills gap is that the pay checks for professionals with big data skills are 40% higher than other IT skills. McKinsey report predicts that by end of 2018 there will be shortage of 190,000 big data professionals in US alone which including 1.5 million managers who have no clue on how big data deployments can bring in a positive impact on their organization.

A popular jobs analytics firm- Burning Glass analysed millions of job listings posted across 40,000+ online job portals and found that big data skills saw the biggest increases (3977%) in demand from 2011 through 2017.Clearly, 2018 is the best time to upskill your career with the most sought-after big data skills, get some training and master the technologies to make the best of what’s likely to become a long-term trend in IT.

1) Apache Hadoop

Apache Hadoop”, the technology synonymous to big data is quite a decade old but the demand for hadoop professionals is not going down any soon. Hadoop had a monstrous year in 2017 and is positioned for even bigger 2018 with the hadoop community having rolled Hadoop 3.0 as a holiday present to the big data community on December 14, 2017. Hadoop is a powerful big data platform and can turn out to be a fussy beast if it is not handled by skilled professionals. Professionals who know the best way to tweak the core big data components within the Hadoop stack – HDFS, MapReduce, Pig, Hive, and HBase will in great demand. The skills required to stand-up and administer hadoop environments will continue to be in-demand in 2018 and beyond.

2) Apache Spark

Apache Spark, the elephantine cousin is red hot and has gained broad familiarity within the big data space building high energy levels around its adoption and deployment owing to its superfast analysis and processing. It is considered as one of the fastest growing big data skills for job seekers with job postings for professionals with spark skillset increasing by 120% year-over-year. According to a Cloudera Sponsored Research on Apache Spark Market, 1/3rd of the professionals surveyed mention learning spark or integrating spark as major barrier to its adoption. With not enough skilled spark professionals, demand for expertise in this open source technology is on the rise.

3) NoSQL Database

If Apache Hadoop skills form the head of the big data coin, NoSQL database skills form the other. 90% of the data generated over this decade is likely to be unstructured data and managing unstructured big data is the foremost stimulant for the growing demand of NoSQL database professionals. According to Payscale.com, the average salary for a Senior Software Engineer with NoSQL skills is $118, 651. Among all the industries hiring NoSQL experts, the healthcare industry offers big fat pay checks. For professionals yearning to master NoSQL skills, MongoDB skills top the list of NoSQL databases with Dice showing 1243 available job positions as of this writing. The following number of big data jobs are available for professionals with other popular NoSQL Database skills –

MongoDB: 1243

HBase: 687

Cassandra: 984

Redis: 484

4) Data Science and Analytics

Data science technologies are making a great impact on the economy with tech and finance industry embracing these skills faster than others. According to Burning Glass Technologies report, the demand for data science and analytic skills is anticipated to grow by 15% in the next 5 years. Data scientists and advanced analysts are the fastest growing job roles that are projected to see demand spike by 28%. Dice has nearly 29,000 job listings for data scientist jobs as of December 26, 2017. Data Scientist is among the best jobs in America right now and employers are finding it difficult to make a match of expertise data science skills for their businesses. Master data science skills right now if you want to be a talent hotspot for the employers across the globe.

5) Data Visualization

According to Burning Glass Technologies, a Boston based startup that analyses data from online job advertisements, the demand for data visualization skills has grown up by 2574% in the last 5 years. Data Visualization sets the business context for what the data is saying and makes it easier for non-analysts and the stakeholders to understand the model to make decisions based on it. Therefore, the demand for experts skilled with various data visualization tools like Tableau and Qlikview is on the rise as they tell business about the shape of your data and reveal hidden insights.

The demand for professionals with big data skills is not on the rise but it is here right now and IT geeks are highly encouraged to make the best out of it. Whether you are just beginning your career in big data, or you are looking for better opportunities or just trying to thrive right where you are, it’s important that you’re up-to-date with the above mentioned in-demand big data skills, as they continue to be hottest and highest paying tech career opportunities. Once you master majority of big data skills listed in this post, opportunities are bountiful and exciting in the big data domain. 2018 is the time for IT professionals to hone their big data skills as CTO’s, CMO’s and CIO’s pay top dollars to skilled professionals who can help organizations analyse troves of data for profitable decision making.


  1. Machine learning is also one of the hottest fields in big data. Big data professionals who can leverage machine learning technology to build and manage predictive analytic applications such as classification, recommendation, and personalization systems are hugely in demand and can grab the top packages in the job market.

  2. Very nice article and true it is. Just wish our education curriculum could be so updated for the latest technologies. I had to do an external online course for Big Data Hadoop from Dataflair – data-flair.training .. Now I am having a successful career as a Data Analyst.


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