My journey transitioning into Data Science

Exactly 6 months ago I transitioned into the data field from a non-coding background.

I believe anyone and everyone can do this

All you need is high school-level math and a willingness

I’m going to share 5 secrets that helped me land a data analytics job in a Big4 firm.

This is the story of how I went from a dead-end unpaid internship to landing a job in a Big 4 firm.

I got into a domain I’m keen on building my career all while partying and having fun in my spare time

Pick a niche

The foremost step is picking a niche within the applications of Analytics

I had a specific niche in my domain I’m interested in building my career.

Niche is different from the domain(marketing, finance) of your specialization.

It’s something more specific in it and be open to work/learning on other related niches.

It’s not bad to have 2/3 niches within the domain.

Mine was business analytics, marketing analytics, and market research.

I will write a separate issue on how to choose this

Work beyond your working hours

After 8 hours of unpaid work in my internship, I worked at least 1-2 hours on the domain of the career I wanted to build.

I took up a course on data science on Udemy

And found a lot of free resources on YouTube to the level it overwhelmed me

Consistently putting in these extra hours is what helped me out a lot

Still, I learned the basics of an invaluable skill from my unpaid internship – Sales.

This skill helped me sell my skillset to the recruiter.

Build a project portfolio in your niche

I was always on the lookout for hands-on projects which was in coherence to the technical skill I was learning

I did these from the online courses I did or found datasets in Kaggle that was relevant to my niche.

I put more effort into a marketing research project

And worked on a data visualization project on customer satisfaction found on Kaggle.

Build a good narrative and be open to learn

I built a killer narrative and a good story for the interview question “Tell me about yourself Sasi".

I linked my hobby(football) to the reason why I’m interested and fascinated by analytics.

It encouraged the interviewer to ask questions related to the topics I wanted to talk about.

My recruiter asked “How football can use analytics in a way it wasn’t used before?” (You think of one)

I was as creative as possible and gave out-of-the-box ideas to open-ended questions.

I was open and willing to learn any skill/tool and accepted if I only had limited knowledge on a topic.

This is a very important attitude as far as I observed.

Learning will be the only constant in this field

Reach out to people for tips and guidance

Reach out to people on LinkedIn or Twitter.

Talking to them does help you calm your anxiety over job search and interviews.

I am still thankful to all who helped me out.

Feel free to reach out to me if you need any help with getting a job, preparation, and CV guidance.


I took the leap of faith and switched from Physics PhD into data science. It was a rough few months but the short bootcamp I attended Insight made it easier.

I was already coding and had stats background but have not fully invested in DS/ML especially the parts that require business understanding and soft skills that are crucial in industrial settings. So those areas were the main highlight for me at the beginning of the journey.

One and I believe the most important part of my job search and interviews is the part were I have to show that even though I am not fully knowledgeable in the field/questions, showing that I am enthusiastic and a quick learner. Definitely think about in detail how to answer questions if you are not sure and try finding releavant areas from your experiences.

Thinking deeply about your past projects, work ethics and communication skills and ace’ing the behavioral parts of the interviews definitely a must. It took me a while to switch my mindset from “people hire me due to my technical skills only” to “companies care about my soft skills a lot”.

Let me know if you have questions about transitioning from PhD into DS/ML.


Thanks for your insights! Can definitely learn from this

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This is such a cool story! I came to data science from a non-programming background as well, and Twitter was so important in both learning as well as finding my community. I really like how you linked your hobby to your interest in analytics - have you written any blog posts about that? I’m sure they’d be a lot of fun to read as well as inspiring for others!


That’s an interesting topic I can write about!

Thanks for the suggestion!

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for sure! and when you write it feel free to post in our self-promotion thread - I know we’d all like to read it!

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