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How to choose ML & AI Agency and Developer in 2019?

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Introduction

With Bombardment of AI and ML, it has become difficult for many organizations to prepare themselves for this industrial revolution. Not only organizations are finding it challenging to roll out AI and ML in the organization but are also finding it equally challenging to land a suitable Agency or developer for the job. This article tries to delve into some criteria that organizations can select when they are planning to hire an agency or a developer.

Analysis of Organization Readiness

If your organization is entirely new to BigData, Data Science, AI &ML the very first thing to consider is to check for readiness to embrace these technologies.

Checking for readiness comes into the picture much before planning to hire people to carry out such jobs. Identify the business domains and impact areas for transitioning into these tech playgrounds.

Carry out surveys among every stakeholder, and these could be your customers, clients, employers, vendors, higher management, etc.

Now if you are an organization which is looking for implementation within the organization, then you might require to hire people with specific skill-sets or outsource the job to a vendor or job agency.

If your organization is planning for offering solutions in AI and ML, then you might require to hire several people to work in different solution offerings.

It is also possible that you might require to engage third-party vendors to deliver a particular solution or part of the solution. Irrespective of how you plan to hire the very first thing is to do the analysis of readiness.

There are some checkpoints to do the analysis:

  • Is your management ready for the challenge?
  • Is your workforce ready for the change?
  • Steps required to restructure the organization.

What to look in for developer?

Different job roles need to be created for the different teams that would be working on the product. The roles could vary from a simple data analyst to product manager. Organizations can have their own set of criteria or can follow some big tech names while hiring a developer. Here are some tips that organizations can add to their set of criteria:

  • Don’t give importance to fancy degrees – Traditionally, most organizations have been giving due importance to graduate, post-graduate, and PhDs from reputed universities or at least decent degree programs to fulfill their manpower. To get the job done skills possessed by the person should be given due importance. If your organization can ignore fancy degrees and focus more on skills, it will help the organization in the long run.
  • Mathematics skills are a must – Mathematics is a must skill for having jobs in AI and ML related fields. Check out the proficiency of the developers in probability, statistics, quantitative analysis, etc.
  • Github is the new cv– Traditional Curriculum-Vitae is a thing of past check out the new age curriculum-vitae, i.e., Github. A candidate’s proficiency can be gauged by the actual work he or she can showcase on Github.
  • Professional and social media connections are vital for jobs– Some organizations rely on social media groups and pages to hire a candidate while that is great, but again, professional media connections such as Linkedin provide very fine details about a person whom you want to shortlist. Also, check out the candidates’ contributions in StackOverflow and several other connections and meetup sites where the candidate is very active. Such connections not only are boon to the organization but also provide a self-learning ecosystem for the developers. A developer who is already active on such a platform does not require much of the training. On the contrary, such developers can help in training other developers within the organization if selected.
  • Perseverance and relentlessness are essential for the job – Forbes magazine states that the candidate should have perseverance and patience to get the job done. AI and ML are quite young fields and do not have much of history. Researchers and people working on these fields have to work hard for several months to derive the results. This work can be tiring but can only be achieved if the person is patient and has a relentless drive to achieve the result.
  • Being Passionate is the key to derive success– Check out persons passion in the given field. While several people are joining the AI & ML courses in the hope of getting a huge salary, it does not always work. While higher perks and benefits are essential, but if a person is not passionate about the job, then results can’t be achieved in such a highly competitive environment.
  • A highly curious person is absolutely desirable – Curiosity in this field is highly desirable. A person who is quite a curiosity and jumps into exploring answers to his curious questions is the right candidate for the job.
  • Knowledge of Programming – It is quite essential that the candidates should possess at least some basic programming skills in python, java, javascript, and should also have some basic knowledge about the cloud environment. The candidate may not be expert in the field but should possess at least basic knowledge in these fields.
  • Quality to ingest, filter, and process the data– This is an important skill for this job. Check out candidates basic skills in the filtering of data, making out valid points out of data. Candidate should at least have basic knowledge about data and what he needs to do with data. A simple data excel skill which even school kid can master is required to know what is data all about.

These are some of the tips that organizations can use for hiring the right candidate. You can read about Forbes article on hiring here.

What to look for an agency?

Some organizations tend to hire agencies for getting the job done. Some prefer freelancing platforms such as Upwork, freelancer, etc., for small projects while others reach out to third-party vendors on a long term basis. There are various criteria for getting an agency onboard. Here are a few tips :

  • Check out the portfolio of the agency – This is quite easy if agencies are active on freelancing platforms such as upwork, freelancer, etc. You can check out the portfolio and client reviews of the agency.
  • Check agencies online presence – If an agency has a website, check it out for their portfolio and expertise in the field. Also, check out their social media and professional connections on facebook, twitter, LinkedIn. Watch out for recommendations from other parties for the agency.
  • Check out some premium agencies if funding is not an issue– There are some premium agencies such as Toptal, codementor who have subject matter experts on their panel. Organizations can get a consultation as well as can hire them on a long term basis.
  • Create parameters for sorting out several agencies– Each organization has its own principles and a rule book based on which they run their business. It is a nice idea to have a set of parameters defined for hiring an agency. Shortlist all the agencies and check out the agencies which fulfill most of the parameters.
  • Check out the SMEs, developers on board– A agency is defined by the resources they have available at the organization’s disposal when the job gets rolling. Always check out the skills of the people on board when hiring the agency.
  • Specifically, ask questions about data handling– Data handling in bulk is what an agency should handle comfortably. Efficiency in data handling is the necessity of the job. Check out the agency’s skill in data handling.

This article discusses some of the ways which organizations can use for hiring a developer or an agency. The AI and ML are uncharted territories, and over a period of times, many things would evolve. Some of the ways might get obsolete while new ones would come into the picture. The list is not complete. Each organization can always rework and come out with their own criteria for hiring talents in this field. In the future new job, roles will come into the picture and also will require new sets of parameters and criteria to select candidates eligible for these job roles.

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