Data Engineering: The Future  

The future of the data, tech and analytics space is exciting however, there is a concern in both professionals keeping up to date with change and those that want to pursue a data engineering career that the changes are coming thick and fast.

By definition, the role of the data engineer is to get the right data sets lined up, ready and available to the people in the business that need to analyse it. Collaboration is key to this role.

The evolving role of the data engineer is being driven by an invasion of rapid technological advancements which is causing the industry to completely transform. The changes within data engineering have been impacted by many different tools such as Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, the Internet of Things (IoT) and the cloud. On top of this, evolving business needs and higher expectations of the value that data can provide means that Data Engineers have moved from a support function to the owners of data flows.

Tech-related vacancies have had a surge in popularity in the last few years and currently make up around 13% of all UK vacancies in 2021, up from 12.3% in 2020. The resilience shown within the tech industry has increased massively during the pandemic, tech has literally saved the world of work during these testing times.

The role of a Data Engineer is central to any modern data-driven organisation. Technologies such as Big Query, Snowflake and any other Cloud warehousing platform for that matter helps the Data Engineer to accomplish complex tasks effectively. Therefore, freeing up their time to resource on other tasks. Technology has enabled them to focus on core data infrastructure, performance optimisation and flow.

Because the available technology is helping the role evolve, businesses are now looking for Data Engineers to be skilled in many different areas. Often Data Engineers are asked to demonstrate software engineering methodologies such as Agile as well as distributed systems, programming languages, SQL, ETL/ELT, Visualisation, analytics and data modelling. The rise in home working and increase in cyber-attacks over recent years has also led the data engineer to become knowledgeable in cyber security and data privacy as well as deploying sophisticated data masking solutions.

As the role evolves the demands increase and as a result, companies desire more complex data projects to squeeze the value from their data. It is no surprise or coincidence that Data Engineering jobs are enjoying a huge increase at the moment.

As the role of a Data Engineer develops into a more focused and specialised bracket of people that will require a new set of skills, technology is only getting more sophisticated. The industry has an opportunity to branch out and discover further ways to help better understand data.

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