Beyond the Ubers and Deliveroos of the world, the gig economy has evolved to match up skills in the world of recruitment. In the burgeoning field of data science, demand is high but supply, not so much. According to a 2014 Nesta report on how leading companies are recruiting and managing their data talent, the skills shortage is only set to grow in the future. Data science hub Pivigo’s new gig-based marketplace may be the answer to bridging the skills gap.
In October 2016, TechUK released a white paper that revealed the UK’s gaping digital skills gap, costing the nation £2 billion a year. Connecting data scientists and businesses, Pivigo’s data science marketplace is a platform based on the gig economy model. It allows businesses to outsource their data projects to a pool of talented professionals at anytime, anywhere.
Companies will be able to post their requirements on the platform enabling data scientists to review the opportunities and then browse and apply to those projects they want to work on. Some will be short-term projects and others will be much longer, depending on businesses’ data needs and wants. The Pivigo team will also be able to allocate and help companies source the best talent for their data needs.
Pivigo’s CEO and co-founder Kim Nilsson believes that data science is the ultimate competitive advantage for businesses today. “Businesses who are first to realise the power of data science have a first mover advantage. They gain the ability to apply previous inaccessible insights to increase sales, improve efficiency and save money. Not many businesses however have access to a team of data science experts from around the world,” Nilsson said.
“The on-demand marketplace we have created is the solution for any business who wants to use data science to grow and improve their overall performance.”
The data science marketplace is now taking applications for businesses to post project requests, as well as talent interested in joining its network.
JustGiving is one of the first signed up for the marketplace. According to JustGiving’s chief data analyst, Mike Bugembe, data science is primed for the gig economy as the demand for flexible, on-demand talent rises. “Access to a hub like Pivigo’s marketplace is much needed in today’s workplace and it allows for flexibility when in-house resources may be limited. The new marketplace grants access to a world wide talent pool – creating options not previously available,” he said.
The fast and loose world of freelance work isn’t for everyone, especially with the uncertainty of having a steady flow of work. According to Jeffrey Ng, chief scientist at Founders Factory, this marketplace may also encourage potential data scientists to rack up experience and build a diverse portfolio.
“Having worked for many years within the machine learning and data science space, I am thrilled this platform now exists – allowing the data science community to get involved in exciting project work they would have struggled to find without Pivigo,” he said. “The marketplace not only supports data scientists looking to freelance, but also gives those who are newer to the field a platform to gain valuable work experience before potentially taking a full time role. It is a very exciting time and the data science community is eager to get involved.”
Since launching in 2013, Pivigo has worked with clients including KPMG, Barclays, M&S, and Royal Mail as well as start-ups like Network Locum. Working with these companies Pivigo has completed over 80 projects, some of which include price optimisation, predictive modelling, recommendation systems and data exploration.
CEO Nilsson is a former astronomer and academic, while COO Jason Muller previously founded a group of healthcare recruitment firms. At its core, Pivigo has focused on helping businesses become more data driven and have access to the best and brightest talent. As part of this, the pair set up and run Europe’s largest data science training programme, S2DS, under the Pivigo data science umbrella.