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This post is contributed by the Burtch Works Data Science and Data Engineering recruiting teams.  

To measure hiring demand for data scientists and data engineers, we’ve been surveying data teams twice a year to gauge their hiring plans for Q1/2 and then again for Q3/4.  

Our survey for the first half of 2022 shows that 83% of data teams are looking to hire data scientists and data engineers – a slight jump up from 73% for the same period last year. So how does the second half of 2022 compare? What impact did the ‘Great Resignation’ have on hiring in 2022? Is attrition still a challenge that companies are dealing with? Are layoffs and hiring freezes impacting future hiring decisions? Let’s dive in.  

Hiring Data Science & Analytics Teams: Q3 and Q4 of 2022 

Our survey results from the second half of 2022 show that 81% of data teams are looking to hire data scientists and data engineers – a slight decline from the 83% of teams looking to hire during the first half of 2022.  

Even with the expected economic uncertainty emerging in the future, most data teams surveyed have not significantly altered their hiring plans for the second half of 2022, signaling a continuous robust demand for data talent while remaining steady with Q3/4 of 2021. 

The respondents of the survey spanned over 120 companies across the U.S. ranging across various industries. Of the total, 14% of data teams indicated they are holding steady, 3% of teams revealed they are on a hiring freeze, while 2% of teams reported they are either cutting back on hiring or planning to do so.  

This is notable when compared to the first half of 2022 because the percentage of companies reporting a hiring freeze or planning to cut back rose slightly for the second half of the year. The hiring momentum that picked up during the second half of 2021 does not seem to have materially changed, with only a minor decline projected in hiring, but that could change depending on how impactful the broader economic slowdown is.   

For the second half of 2022, there has been an even bigger increase in the percentage of firms seeking to make permanent hires since our last survey. During Q1/2 of 2022, 65% of teams responded they are only looking for permanent hires, but that number has increased to 78% for Q3/4 of 2022. Of those surveyed, only 5% of teams reported they are only looking for contract or temporary hires, while 17% of teams reported they are seeking both permanent and temporary headcount additions. 

Responses to the third question, regarding whether companies’ hiring is more geared towards increasing headcount (34%), backfilling vacant roles (18%), or temporary/project-based hiring (4%), shifted a bit from our previous survey (respondents were allowed to choose more than one answer). While companies seem to have filled a good portion of open roles due to attrition challenges, increasing headcount and backfilling remain a priority for teams for the remainder of 2022. 

The Great Resignation and its Impact on Data Scientist and Data Engineer Salaries  

As we know, the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the hiring market have shifted significantly over the past few years. During the immense disruption of 2020, many professionals chose to put planned job searches on hold, while some data science teams were more impacted than others in terms of their hiring plans and response to the initial crisis.  

As the economic recovery picked up in 2021, we saw more data science teams planning to hire. There was also massive turnover in the labor market, dubbed the Great Resignation, as many professionals resumed their job searches or sought to change their working situation due to other pandemic-related factors. Unfortunately for those looking to hire, this has led to fewer professionals on the market in 2022, and a lower inventory of available candidates. Many candidates that are still on the market are coming to the table with numerous offers and are seeking a meaningful increase in salary, along with other benefits. Only time will tell what the future holds but it is evident that the demand for data science and analytics professionals is continuously increasing. 

Salary Increases for 2022 

Check out our 2022 data science & AI professionals salary report for in-depth salary information, hiring trends, market insights and leading indicator research. 

Burtch Works has been collecting data on salaries for our specialty fields since 2013, and, as recruiters who spend thousands of hours every year talking to employers and professionals in these areas, we’re always keen to share our insights on how the market is shaping up. 

Keep an eye on the blog for future updates, and we look forward to sharing more hiring trends and data with you very soon! 

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