AI News, Freelance/independent consulting career in Data Science

Freelance/independent consulting career in Data Science

Working as a programmer with a love of R&D I've been able to imagineer data-science strategies to find the solution to most of the challenges involved in decisions/strategy/identified problems. I've engaged in freelance arrangements with marketing companies and agencies for years because I developed my own tools to do data-mining quickly years before it was even common practice to involve in small business.

Now I'm actively re-starting my own freelance business to fund my studies to focus my future in medical research tools - my biggest challenge is figuring out how non-technical people who have never heard of these strategies would actually describe it if they were seeking such assistance?

How to Become a Freelance Data Scientist

The market for consultants and freelancers has expanded considerably over the past decade.

LinkedIn has seen a growth in the number of freelancers using their website by 43% in the last 5 years as employers prefer to hire independent contractors over employees.

You can now become a freelance data scientist, a career path chosen by some like Ryan Rosario, a Springboard mentor.  The appeal of a flexible work schedule with high pay is bringing large numbers of new data science freelancers to the labor market.

First, build a better portfolio and make a profile on freelancer directories If the names Upwork and Toptal aren’t familiar to you, learning about these companies and other freelancer directories is a mandatory first step.

This example from Trent Salazar shows up near the top of search results for “data science portfolio”, guaranteeing that hiring managers are looking through his profile every day.  Your website should include an easy to navigate portfolio section, and make it easy for someone to find your contact information.

For tips on building your portfolio, read the first section of this article by DataQuest.  _________________ In addition to having a personal website, it helps to create a freelance data scientist profile on platforms that receive lots of traffic from potential employers.

Only the top 3% of applicants will be admitted into Toptal’s directory, but if you are accepted, expect access to world class job openings, and to be courted by the best companies in the world.

To be admitted to Toptal you must pass a live screening for language and technical skills as well as an interview by two senior engineers, and you must complete an assigned test project, typically over one to three weeks.

You must submit a cover letter and create a profile describing your skills, experience, portfolios, client feedback, and your language and communication skills.

Second, participate in your peers’ community groups and show that you are an expert Once you have a presence in online directories, the next step is to develop a presence on the web as an expert in your field.

It will help you define yourself as a freelance data scientist with valuable insight.  Often, data scientists beginning a new project will turn to communities of experts for help solving tough problems.

CrowdAnalytix primarily serves as a crowdsourced portal for data science solutions.  Data Science Central At Data Science Central, you can find a forum dedicated to data science, helpful resources and tutorials, networking events, and industry job opportunities.

It is a great resource to differentiate yourself as a data science expert and a great freelance data scientist.  Attending professional conferences and networking in person is also vital.

filter your search to find start-ups looking to contract a data scientist AngelList is an online hub for start-ups to promote their businesses, advertise jobs, and for young entrepreneurs to network with other like-minded workers.

Living in a tourist/resort town in the middle of the forest there really are not any other data scientists around, and many of the local services and businesses must go through lengthy contract processes with large companies that have rates that the community would prefer not to spend.

Staying local has been lucrative for everyone involved because the relationship is personable and easier to manage, and I charge a reasonable rate compared to large consulting firms that may not have the domain expertise to make the most impact.

Do more than other freelancers, engage in professional networks online, and search out start-ups and entrepreneurs in search of your skills!  Finally, research how much you can make in our post on data scientist salaries.

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Careers for creative people : Career Outlook: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

People use creativity every day in all kinds of ways, whether to tell a story about that time your car broke down or to develop a mobile app.

“It’s as necessary to me as eating and breathing.” But making creativity your job typically requires practice, risktaking, and trial and error.

It discusses the creative process, highlights selected occupations that require creativity, and offers employment and wage data for these occupations.

The article also explains some of the rewards and challenges of creative work, describes how to get started in a creative career, and lists resources for more information.

When thinking of ideas for a fabric pattern, for example, Triola looks in unexpected places, including cracks in ice or the lines on a cabbage leaf.

“As long as you keep working, you’ll keep getting better.” Throughout the creative process, workers should assess and revise their work.

A retail salesperson, for example, might design a more engaging product pitch, and a physicist might devise some new way of understanding nature.

(For a list of other occupations that may involve creative skills, including some that you might not expect, see the box.) Artists and related workers create aesthetic pieces that try to capture certain beliefs, feelings, or ideas.

The occupations described in this category include art directors, craft artists, fine artists, and multimedia artists.

Art directors work primarily in visual communications media, including advertising, publications, video games, theater, and film.

These artists create handmade arts and goods using a variety of raw materials, such as wood, metal, and fabric.

With the help of film, cameras, computers, and other tools, multimedia artists create video games, commercials, music videos, and more.

The following design occupations described are commercial and industrial, fashion, floral, graphic, interior, and set and exhibit designers.

By researching and collecting data on customer behavior and market needs, these workers improve artistic design and ease of use, and ensure integration with existing products or services.

Using words, images, and symbols, these designers tweak style elements—such as color and typography—to create posters, logos, packaging, and other products.

They also consult with experts to understand elements from a style or period, and they inspect the finished set or exhibit to ensure that it matches their design.

When reviewing and revising drafts, editors try to preserve the author’s voice while verifying facts, correcting grammar, and reorganizing content to improve readability.

They photograph people, landscapes, architecture, food, merchandise, or other subjects, depending on their specialty or the type of project for which they are hired.

In most of the occupations described in this article, data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) show that wage and salary workers earned more than the $35,540 median annual wage for all workers in May 2014.

And, although employment growth is projected to be slow for most of them, the need to replace workers who leave the occupations is expected to result in opportunities.

(See table 1.) However, these estimates do not include wages for self-employed workers, whose incomes may vary more widely than those of wage and salary workers overall.

For example, graphic designers in the San Francisco metropolitan area earned a median annual wage of $74,930, compared with the median annual wage of $49,110 earned by graphic designers in the Chicago metropolitan area.

For example, technical writers in the specialized design services industry earned a median annual wage of $86,990, compared with technical writers in the newspaper publishers industry who earned a median annual wage of $54,600 per year.

According to data from the BLS Employment Projections (EP) program, employment size was relatively small in 2012—the base year for the most recent projections data—in many of the creative occupations discussed in this article.

By comparison, editors’ employment was less concentrated in a single industry: 18 percent worked for newspaper publishers, 10 percent were self-employed, and the rest found work in numerous industries, including advertising and TV broadcasting.

For example, writers and authors, photographers, and craft artists—occupations listed in the table with the highest rates of self-employment—may be able to generate enough income working for themselves if they can successfully sell their creative product.

Reasons for slow growth may vary among occupations but include foreign competition and the decline of related industries such as publishing media.

But even in occupations that have limited growth, job openings are projected because of the need to replace workers who retire or leave for some other reason.

“You can express yourself and take pride in what you create.” News editor Gerri Berendzen of Columbia, Missouri, agrees, adding that she enjoys the adrenaline rush that comes with trying to break a big story—and getting the facts right.

For example, a cartoonist sketching a new superhero character might decide to combine existing ideas, such as a cape, with his or her own elements, such as the idea of a child superhero.

Freelance illustrator Dufford, for example, browses online art communities and blogs, taking elements of others’ art ideas and reinterpreting them in unique ways.

“If you surround yourself with good art,” he says, “you’ll be inspired to create good artwork.” As with almost any career, creative workers may face challenges in their jobs that they need to overcome.

And because competition for these jobs is often intense, workers may have a hard time finding enough creative work to earn an adequate income.

Self-employed workers usually face additional frustrations, including managing staff problems, assessing financial risks, and balancing work–life demands.

“I really enjoy the feeling of accomplishment I get when I complete a project.” You’ll need some combination of skills, education and training, and experience to get started in a creative career.

For example, a craft artist who specializes in woodworking needs to be able to make bevel and groove cuts with a saw and a chisel, among other tools.

“The single most important skill in a creative field is to learn how to use words to describe what you’re doing so others can understand your vision,” says Triola.

The Small Business Administration and the nonprofit SCORE offer information for small business owners through free or low-cost resources and services, including workshops, networking events, and one-on-one mentorships.

(See table 3.) Getting an education helps workers build a solid technical and artistic foundation—and may improve employment prospects, even in occupations that don’t typically require a formal program.

For example, beginning art directors, multimedia artists, and industrial designers typically need a bachelor’s degree in a field related to their specialty.

Creative occupations that usually require a high school diploma at the entry level, such as craft and fine artists and floral designers, also typically require on-the-job training.

As with workers in many fields, workers in creative jobs need to keep up with changes in technology and styles, such as by acquiring new skills, taking classes, or following blogs.

“Keep learning until the day you die.” As table 3 also shows, most creative occupations don’t require work experience in a related occupation to qualify for entry-level positions.

Among the few who do need experience are editors, who typically gain experience by working in a related occupation, such as editorial assistant, writer, or reporter.

Ninety-nine percent of the time I won’t hear back, but I live off the work that I get from the 1 percent of people who do respond.” Having an online portfolio and a social media presence may help potential clients find your work.

The Ad Agency of the Future Is Coming. Are You Ready?

The old families are preparing their troops and poring over strategies in a race to secure their territory before it is invaded by new and unfamiliar forces.

The best option might be to bundle up (again) and forge alliances between disciplines, but with internal politics and prevailing trends, that might be hard to pull off in a timely fashion -- and impossible to do without sacrificing entire regiments or even divisions.

'Game of Thrones' is an apt metaphor for how agencies are gearing up for an ad future when clients go to market in new ways and seek radically different support from agency groups.

Marketers hired agencies to create 30-second spots, place them on TV and in magazines and create and send direct mail to addresses stored in massive databases.

They must manage marketing across devices and serve customized ads to specific audiences based on real-time analysis of constantly changing data.

At the nexus of this confusing and continually evolving mashup of business operations and marketing are clients, who need a partner to help them stave off their own impending winter.

Ad Age sought opinions from dozens of people on the subject, including Marc Pritchard, CMO of Procter & Gamble, who said that whatever form agencies take in the next five to 10 years, they must be client-centric.

What he does know is that more agencies will rebundle capabilities such as 'creative and media, influencers and digital and production and shopper [marketing]' for individual brand needs.

For Brad Jakeman, president of the global beverage group at PepsiCo, the most effective creative will come from the integration of content creation and distribution, and greater in-house content publishing resources.

'For a brand like Pepsi, it was once sufficient for us to produce four pieces of content a year -- mainly TV -- and we could spend about six to eight months developing that one piece of content and spend $1 million on each piece of film.

Maybe [we have to publish] so quickly and efficiently that it needs to be more of a content-publishing group that sits inside the company and augments the work done through [agencies].'

O'Keefe Reinhard and Paul, which built its business on bringing in outside partners to support accounts -- 'like when Hollywood broke down the old studio system,' according to its website -- is betting on that model.

Chan Suh, senior partner and chief digital officer at consultancy Prophet, and the former founder of expects that the agencies that will be successful in the future will be those that start from scratch today.

A second part of its strategy was to reorganize into four networks that house various disciplines and name client chiefs overseeing accounts across the networks.

This is part of Mr. Levy's vision of the new model as 'modular instead of being siloed' with fewer of the same types of agencies, such as creative, media and PR, as well as a reduction in overhead.

Nick Brien, CEO of Hearst Corp.-owned digital agency iCrossing, is predicting a 25% reduction in head count for holding companies in the next five to 10 years as a result of the 'power of automation' in content creation and distribution and the impact of artificial intelligence on administrative roles.

So then who serves as the lead agency if the more creatively oriented agencies can pull in 'nerdy specialists' and the nerdy specialists can pull in creative shops?

Within that construct, talent can spend more time connecting with 'creators,' with freedom to come up with ideas, versus being tied to holding companies' main objective of generating revenue, she said.

She likened the role to a traditional showrunner who oversees operations and production on a TV series, except this will be a creative strategist responsible for staying close to every facet of the brand.

As clients demand newly bundled support across commerce, digital content and media distribution, agencies are morphing to meet the challenge, investing in media, consulting and tech capabilities.

The threat of new competition media owners, publishers and consultancies -- along with potential rivals tipped to enter the market, such as phone carriers -- has adland pondering how a market-share shakeup could pan out.

'Now, [marketers] are looking toward the lens of innovation and effectiveness in terms of brand-experience creation, and these new entrants who are becoming very formidable very swiftly.'

Bollore Group is the name of the holding company and family that owns French ad services holding company Havas, as well as media network Vivendi, which houses Universal Music, as well as French TV network Canal+, among assets and shares in other industries.

'I don't think any ad agency in the world can do better speaking to my audience than me,' said Mr. Simmons, whose ADD content features poets, celebrities and comedians targeting an urban millennial audience.

Kelley, who added that as the company grows its in-house services business, it must keep the group separate from the publishing sales team and be transparent with clients about when and why it's creating and placing content on the Bloomberg media platform.

Marketing tech companies that help marketers manage data, loyalty and CRM programs already support the business plans that come before marketing, so it's a natural upsell to clients and another threat to agencies.

'Verizon's acquisition of AOL does change the landscape in a significant way, and it has the potential to redefine what the competitor landscape looks like,' said Wenda Millard, chief operating officer and president of industry consultancy Medialink (and a former Yahoo executive).

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