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2020 Data Engineer Job Search and COVID-19 Hiring Trends

November 30, 2020

This post is contributed byBurtch Works’ data engineering recruiting team.2020 has been a year with a lot of disruption and change, including in the data engineering space. In addition to COVID-19’s impact on the hiring market (and economy at large), there have also been evolving approaches to staffing for data engineer positions, including an increasing focus on hiring searches led by specific tools.Since I’m a recruiter in this space, I wanted to share some of my observations with you, in case you’re a data engineer currently looking for a new position, exploring your options, or simply want to be prepared for some of the changes underway.

1. Data Engineer searches becoming increasingly tool-focused

One of the ways that data engineer roles often differ from data scientist positions is the sheer number of tools that may be required. Although data engineers and data scientists often work together on data teams, these two types of professionals frequently have different backgrounds and tool usage. You can read more about the differences between data engineers and data scientists here.Data engineering roles often require an extensive list of tool experience in order to be considered, but since my blog about the most common skills and tools required in data engineering roles, I’ve noticed an increase in the number of job searches that are heavily centered on a few specific tools or skills, in particular, public cloud technologies like AWS and container software like Docker and Kubernetes.As company data organizations continue to mature, I believe the need for these tools and technologies will increase. I have also noticed more of a demand for data engineers who work with Machine Learning systems and those who have specifically worked with DevOps teams. Hybrid roles such as these are very hard for companies to fill because experienced engineers with these skillsets are few and far between.

2. Developing COVID-19 trends in the Data Engineering space

Over the course of the pandemic this year, I have spent a lot of time speaking with candidates about hiring trends and how to make themselves more marketable during this difficult time. Hiring managers tend to appreciate certifications in specific tools especially when you do not have access to certain programming languages or cloud technologies in your current role.I also highly recommend spending some extra time on your resume especially, because this is your first opportunity to set yourself apart from other candidates. With more uncertainty in the job market due to the evolving effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, recruitment pipelines are more flooded than ever, so the more you can do to make your resume attractive, the more likely you are to get a call back. I’ve included some links in the next section that should help with your job search!

3. Job search resources for Data Engineers: resumes, decoding job titles, and soft skills

Whether you’re currently looking for a new position or just want to be prepared in these uncertain times, I wanted to share some of the job searching blogs I’ve put together specifically for data engineers.

12 Do’s and Don’ts for Data Engineer Resumes

Because so many tools are often required in data engineering, putting together a resume that is both concise and impressive can be a challenge. So I put together a list of everything to keep in mind when creating a data engineer resume, including the best ways to format your experience and tools, tips for consultants and contractors, and what NOT to include.

Decoding Data Engineering Job Titles & Specializations

There are a variety of job titles and categories used in data engineering, and while there is always some variation to expected depending on the organization, this post shares descriptions and common tools for several specializations within data engineering, to help you find the right position.

3 Essential Soft Skills for Data Engineers

Yes, technical tools and skills are crucial for data engineering positions. However, soft skills like communication and collaboration are have become increasingly important, even for very technical roles, and are especially critical to managerial and leadership positions. Here are the top three soft skills for data engineers, as well as ways that you can work to improve them for your next interview.With the evolving nature of the pandemic, the next few months are especially uncertain right now. My best advice to data engineers is to be prepared. Now is the time to see what certifications could boost your resume, and to make sure that your resume is an effective summary of your experience. I’ll keep my ears open for new trends to share with you, so be sure to check back for updates!We hope you found this information helpful, and if you’re looking for opportunities or to hire professionals in data engineering, be sure to connect with us.