Detailed Guide forStatisticians in California
May also be called: Actuaries; Analytical Statisticians; Applied Statisticians; Clinical Data Analysts; Clinical Statistics Managers; Database Analysts; Financial Analysts; Research Analysts; Research Associates; and Statistical Analysts
Specialties within this occupation include: Biostatisticians and Clinical Data Managers
What Would I Do?
Statisticians collect large amounts of statistical data and interpret the information so they can provide insight or offer possible solutions. They work in a variety of fields such as government, marketing, health care, and manufacturing. Statisticians working in government agencies may research unemployment rates to help guide government policy. Insurance companies may employ them to calculate risk. Manufacturing companies may hire Statisticians to design experiments to test their products.
When doing research, Statisticians determine the data needed to answer questions and solve problems. To collect data Statisticians often supervise or design experiments, surveys, or opinion polls. When the data is collected, Statisticians analyze and interpret data using a variety of methods.
Statisticians are also responsible for writing reports and presenting their findings on any relationships or trends they discover in their research. They often use charts, graphs, and tables to illustrate their findings. They also report the limitations to their research so inappropriate conclusions will not be drawn.
Biostatisticians specialize in designing studies or clinical trials to test whether a drug treatment is working effectively. They also study the cause, distribution, and control of illnesses. Their work may cover problems such as testing new drug treatments on Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) or learning new factors that cause heart disease.
Clinical Data Managers work in the health care industry designing clinical trials. They specialize in developing protocol for data collection. They often supervise a team and ensure that all members are trained and follow procedures for collecting data.
Tools and Technology
Statisticians use a variety of tools and technology in the course of their work. They use personal computers, tablet computers, and smart phones. They also use statistical analysis software; spreadsheet, presentation, and word processing applications; and e-mail.
Important Tasks and Related Skills
Each task below is matched to a sample skill required to carry out the task.
|View the skill definitions|
|Task||Skill Used in this Task|
|Apply sampling techniques or use complete enumeration bases to determine and define groups to be surveyed.||Mathematical Reasoning|
|Report results of statistical analyses in peer-reviewed papers and technical manuals.||Critical Thinking|
|Develop an understanding of fields to which statistical methods are to be applied to determine whether methods and results are appropriate.||Deductive Reasoning|
|Supervise and provide instructions for workers collecting and tabulating data.||Oral Expression|
|Adapt statistical methods to solve specific problems in many fields, such as economics, biology, and engineering.||Mathematics|
|Report results of statistical analyses, including information in the form of graphs, charts, and tables.||Information Ordering|
|Evaluate sources of information to determine any limitations in terms of reliability or usability.||Inductive Reasoning|
|Develop software applications or programming to use for statistical modeling and graphic analysis ||Programming|
|Evaluate the statistical methods and procedures used to obtain data to ensure validity, applicability, efficiency, and accuracy.||Complex Problem Solving|
|Process large amounts of data for statistical modeling and graphic analysis, using computers.||Computers and Electronics|
Below is a definition for each skill.
|View the tasks to skills list|
|Mathematical Reasoning||The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.|
|Critical Thinking||Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.|
|Deductive Reasoning||The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.|
|Oral Expression||The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.|
|Mathematics||Using mathematics to solve problems.|
|Information Ordering||The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).|
|Inductive Reasoning||The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).|
|Programming||Writing computer programs for various purposes.|
|Complex Problem Solving||Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.|
|Computers and Electronics||Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.|
Statisticians generally work in an office and do most of their work on a computer. They may experience eyestrain, back discomfort, and hand and wrist problems from using a computer for long periods of time. They sometimes travel to other locations to supervise surveys, consult with clients, or gather data. They typically work a 40 hour week but may have to work overtime to meet deadlines. Statisticians commonly work on teams with different groups of people such as scientists, doctors, business professionals, or other Statisticians.
Unionization is not common for Statisticians; however, those in government agencies may be unionized.
Will This Job Fit Me?
The job of Statistician may appeal to individuals who like working with data and details. They should have good verbal and written communication skills as they often report technical data to groups of people who may not have the same statistical background.
What Wages and Benefits Can I Expect?
The median wage in 2016 for Statisticians in California is $83,462 annually, or $40.12 hourly. The median is the point at which half of the workers earn more and half earn less.
Statisticians typically receive excellent benefit packages, such as health and life insurance, pension plans, and vacation and sick leave.
What is the Job Outlook?
Job prospects should be good for Statisticians as businesses continue to organize and analyze data for commercial reasons and government agencies must make informed decisions on government policies. Also, large increases in available data from the Internet have opened up new areas for statistical analysis.
Biostatisticians and Clinical Data Managers will also be needed as the health care industry grows. As the population ages, the health care industry will continue to develop new treatments that will require Biostatisticians and Clinical Data Managers to design research and clinical trials.
Projections of Employment
In California, the number of Statisticians is expected to grow much faster than average growth rate for all occupations. Jobs for Statisticians are expected to increase by 45.0 percent, or 1,800 jobs between 2014 and 2024.
|Estimated Employment and Projected Growth|
(Estimated Year-Projected Year)
Due to Net
|View Projected Growth for All Areas|
Annual Job Openings
In California, an average of 180 new job openings per year is expected for Statisticians, plus an additional 70 job openings due to net replacement needs, resulting in a total of 250 job openings.
|Estimated Average Annual Job Openings|
|Jobs From Growth||Jobs Due to|
|View Data for All Areas|
How Do I Qualify?
Education, Training, and Other Requirements
A bachelor’s degree may be sufficient for some entry-level Statistician jobs. However, many employers require a master’s degree in statistics or another closely related field such as mathematics or course work in survey methodology. Research and academic jobs generally require a Ph.D.
Statisticians should also have a background in the field of work they may enter. For Biostatisticians and Clinical Data Managers, a background in biology, chemistry, or health science is important. Courses in economics and business administration are helpful for many jobs in market research, business analysis, and forecasting. Also, a background in computer science is highly recommended for prospective Statisticians as computers are often used in statistical applications.
Prior experience is not always required; however, employers generally look for applicants with relevant experience. For Biostatisticians and Clinical Data Managers, employers often prefer applicants with previous experience with a pharmaceutical company.
An internship may be a good way for prospective Statisticians to gain practical work experience. Organizations offering internships look for students working towards their bachelor’s degree in statistics. However, many internship opportunities require individuals who are pursuing a master's degree or Ph.D.
Early Career Planning
High school students interested in becoming a Statistician should take courses in statistics, mathematics, economics, science, computers, English, and public speaking.
While continuing education is not a requirement for Statisticians, it is important for them to stay up-to-date on current methodology, practices, and technologies being used in their profession. Having current knowledge will increase the likelihood of career advancement. Continuing education is required to maintain certain certifications.
Statisticians may get an Accredited Professional Statistician (PStat) certificate. This certificate is offered by the American Statistical Association. Certification can demonstrate to an employer skills and knowledge beyond that needed for the profession. For more information, go to the U.S. Department of Labor's Career InfoNet Web site and scroll down to "Career Tools." Click on "Certification Finder" and follow the instructions to locate certification programs.
Where Can I Find Training?
There are two ways to search for training information:
Contact the schools you are interested in to learn about the classes available, tuition and fees, and any prerequisite course work.
Where Would I Work?
The largest industries employing Statisticians are as follows:
|Industry Title||Percent of Total Employment for Occupation in California|
|State Government ||25.2%|
|Scientific Research and Development Svc ||10.6%|
|Insurance Carriers ||9.3%|
|Colleges and Universities ||7.6%|
|Other Information Services ||5.7%|
Finding a Job
Direct application to employers remains one of the most effective job search methods. Applicants can also find employment opportunities through classified ads, professional associations, and online job boards. Online job opening systems include JobCentral at www.jobcentral.com and CalJOBSSM at www.caljobs.ca.gov.
To find your nearest One-Stop Career Center, go to Service Locator. View the helpful job search tips for more resources. (requires Adobe Reader).
Yellow Page Headings
You can focus your local job search by checking employers listed online or in your local telephone directory. Below are some suggested headings where you might find employers of Statisticians.
- College and Universities
- Government Offices
- Management Consultants
- Medical Research
- Research and Development Labs
- Research Services
Find Possible Employers
To locate a list of employers in your area, go to "Find Employers" on the Labor Market Information Web site:
- Select one of the top industries that employ the occupation. This will give you a list of employers in that industry in your area.
- Click on "View Filter Selections" to limit your list to specific cities or employer size.
- Click on an employer for the street address, telephone number, size of business, Web site, etc.
- Contact the employer for possible employment.
Where Could This Job Lead?
With more job experience, Statisticians will be able to advance to senior or management positions. Those who have a master’s degree or a Ph.D. will find more opportunities for advancement. In addition, those with advanced degrees can usually design their own work and develop new statistical methods. They may also go on to become independent consultants.
Below is a list of occupations related to Statisticians with links to more information.
|Compensation, Benefits, and Job Analysis Specialists||Profile|
|Operations Research Analysts||Profile|
These links are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement by EDD.
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