A half-day Workshop on Data Science was organized on April 19, 2018 by the Math-Stats faculty members of Operations Management & Quantitative Techniques (OM&QT) area, IIM Indore. The event witnessed the presence of ten distinguished panelists, Mr. Anand Srinivasan, CEO, DSquare Solutions; Mr. Shubham Chatterji, Sr. Business Manager, SAS; Mr. Sameer Dhanrajani, CSO, Fractal Analytics; Ms. Nidhi Pratapneni, SVP & HOKS, Wells Fargo; Ms. Anshu Sharma Raja, SVP-HOIDC, Vodafone India Limited; Ms. Rohini Srivathsa, Data Science and AI Leader; Mr. Pankaj Rai, SVP & HOS, Wells Fargo; Mr. Sunil Bharadwaj, Data Scientist and Consultant, SAS; Dr. Jayanta Pal, Senior Data Scientist, Zendrive and Mr. Ravinder Sharma, Head Marketing Analytics, AB-InBev Captive. The workshop commenced with a welcome address by Professor Rishikesha T. Krishnan, Director, IIM Indore.
Mr. Sharma said that ‘Data Science is a new buzz-word as it is present on the internet these days—with all sort of electronic devices and technology emerging. Ms. Srivathsa noted that it’s all about looking at the world around us with deep observation—an ability to learn and sort things in a scientific manner. Mr. Dhanrajani suggested Data Science as a sophistication of analytics. Mr. Anand emphasized more on the decision making aspect in the Data Science, and that it is not just a science. There’s also an art form related to it. Discussing about how Data Science has enhanced our skills to solve a problem, Mr. Sharma noted that knowing a method for analytics is good, but one must know how to fit the method to solve a problem. The panelists also discussed how the evolution in technology has brought in changes in Data Science as well. Instead of simply using intuitions and interpretations, with new technology, today, we actually use algorithms, statistics, visualization and decision making to make a real powerful tool to solve problems.
As per the panelists, the skill-sets required to become a Data Scientist include both the core skills like being good at numbers and a strong base of fundamentals of data analytics, and the leadership qualities with good communication skills. They discussed that among the 20-30 profiles of aspirants, only one candidate is been selected today in this field and the nation today has around 40,000 vacancies in Data Science. ‘To be a part of Data Science, one needs to keep updating his/her knowledge about various tools and techniques as well, as there are jobs which go out of sight after a few years’, they advised. They encouraged the young minds to choose their field of interest and master that one thing. ‘Always have compassion and confidence in what you do, and be creative and ambitious’, they suggested.
The panelists, while concluding the discussion also noted that every management school should have a fundamental course / program on Data Analytics, which would help the youngsters get their base strong.
This was followed by a Q&A Session, wherein the participants raised their queries about how Data Science affects our day-to-day lives. The workshop, attended by more than 500 participants from the industry and academia, was well received and appreciated, thanks to tireless efforts of student volunteers (Sumit, Senthil, Sphoorty, and others), and the Industry Interface Office (IIO) of IIM Indore.