Data, Big Data and algorithms are terms that we hear every day without really understanding them. We are aware of the issues, but why do companies have such a need for recruitment in this area? Answers and analysis with Florent, freelance data analyst.
Hello Florent, can you tell us about your background?
"I started my studies with a degree in computer science, which was quite general, and I immediately fell in love with the database part, the design and the modelling of it. Naturally, I continued my studies with a Bachelor's degree in Statistics and Business Intelligence as part of a sandwich course.
I quickly found a job at Decathlon. Ten years ago, freelance contracts were scarce, so I started out as a service provider and have been freelancing for two years.
What are the advantages of being a freelancer in your field? In your opinion, is it an advantage for companies to recruit a freelancer?
"Freedom! In the choice of assignments, the organisation of working time, and being accountable only to the client, it is more interesting and challenging. Even if this status does not guarantee a steady income, given the demand for data from companies, there is little or no risk.
On the company side, using freelancers means being able to launch projects quickly and also to stop them if necessary. A freelancer will bring more perspective, experience and expertise. They will have been to other clients before, experienced more varied situations and tested more technology."
Today, 91% of companies say they have recruited in data over the last 3 years. Can you explain why your industry is booming?
"In my opinion, the number one reason is customer knowledge. This is an aspect that has been put aside by companies for a long time. In fact, technologies that can handle volumetric data were not on the agenda ten years ago. Since then, companies have understood that data allows them to get to know their customers better, and to win over new ones; it is a real marketing loyalty tool. The data will make it possible to understand customer behaviour, build predictive models on sales trends for certain products, and find out how a company is doing compared to its competitors. Of course, data can be used to analyse the ROI of campaigns.
To give some concrete examples:
Data allows companies to be more relevant in the promotional offers pushed to customers through their loyalty card purchases.Using the shopping habits linked to the loyalty card, a company can determine whether the household is expecting a baby in the next few months and push for baby-related promotions.
The scanners used in supermarkets will be geolocated in the shelves. The aim is to know the order in which customers go through the shelves, to know which products they look at and buy, and to propose a reorganisation of the shopping route to make additional sales.
Thanks to the data collected following an advertising campaign on social networks, it is possible to analyse sales on an e-commerce site and the impact on sales in shops.One last thing we don't think about is judicial requisition. Thanks to the data, we can trace a payment made with a stolen cheque and advance the investigation."
Sometimes data is (wrongly) associated with malicious use of data. Can you explain to us why your job is essential to avoid this type of error?
"My job is essential for companies to comply with GDPR: the law for the protection of personal data. In France, companies have been receptive to this law and have applied it to the letter with the help of the CNIL. My job is essential to implement all the changes and work on the anonymisation of customer data required by this law.
Few people know this, but a customer can request that their data no longer be used by a retailer. Today, all customers have the right to contact companies to have all their data anonymised within 30 days. It is also possible to request a company to retrieve all the data linked to an identity over a 3-year period."
If you too wish to call upon freelance resources, in order to carry out your data projects, our Izyfreelance team will assist you with your recruitment. Also, if you have ever brought freelancers into your team before, share your experience with us and take our survey.