I don't know how often I've heard that 'data science' is the sexist job of the 21st century. Also, if I've gotten a cent for each time that I've seen Conway's famous Venn diagram, I'd be somewhat richer. But after my ten years in the industry, I still have no clue why most companies use the generic term data scientist instead of a more specialized job description.
For software engineers, there is a distinction between frontend / backend / fullstack developer. And to be even more specific, the programming language is part of the job description.
This is roughly the setting for most companies that get started with their data science departments. Now in an organization where models are going into production, there are two options.
Option 1: Hand over the PoC Code to the engineering department and hope for the best.
Option 2: Let the researchers do the implementation together with machine learning and software engineers.
While Option 1 might look great at first sight there are severe drawbacks. My personal experience is to avoid this like the plague.
Option 2 might take longer and require a cultural change. This also changes how data scientists interact with other parts of the company.
Let's call data scientists that can focus on the production readiness of their models from now on productive data scientists.
The next stage, once the model is in production, is to transition into a maintained mode and slowly fade out the productive data scientists out of the project. This is where the new role of ML OPS analyst comes into play. This goal is:
For the last couple of years, GfK has put over 600 Machine Learning models into production that are in use. We are currently building up a practice of MLOPS analytics. If you want to be part of this journey reach out to …