It’s all about teamwork

Data-savvy specialists are important in creating new value to businesses through the Internet of Things and analytics, but the last mile will always be covered with the help of a good and versatile team, Päivi Karesjoki of Avarea maintains.

According to a leading IT news media CRN, data scientists are invaluable to businesses aspiring to benefit from analytics and the Internet of Things. As stated in a piece by Lindsey O´Donnell, data scientists are key figures in many new fields, and especially in the IoT.

As the amount of potentially useful data is growing exponentially, CRN maintains that demand for data scientists is about to skyrocket. According to CRN, in 2018, some 490 000 data scientists are required to meet the needs of new business operations worldwide. It is estimated that only 200 000 such experts are available, and even scarcer are the data scientists who understand the logic of business.

As it stands, the IoT and analytics are threateningly headed towards a halting bottleneck.

Päivi Karesjoki, CEO of IoT solutions and analytics solution provider Avarea, generally agrees, but advices to take such assertions with a pinch of salt.

“In my opinion, putting a single data scientist on a pedestal is a bit of an exaggeration. Working with different kinds of businesses is teamwork that involves all kinds of know-how from tackling various technological fields to understanding business operations.”

Since 2009, Avarea has worked to offer business intelligence and IoT solutions to a wide range of Finnish businesses, from dairy products producers to infrastructure and from forestry to telecom operators. Avarea has enjoyed a steady growth rate, and has been able to meet the toughest challenges.

“Currently we are exploring foreign markets for example in Germany and in Britain.”

Finnish education at the core of competence

Karesjoki attributes much of Avarea´s success to Finnish higher education institutions.

“We Finns, modest as we usually are about our assets, are well-endowed and ready to compete at the top level. For example, technology and connectivity are at the core of Finnish know-how. I am positive that the Finnish higher education pertaining to data analytics definitely holds a candle to similar education in, say, Oxford.”

Karesjoki says that Avarea has co-operated extensively with Finnish universities, which has helped to provide the company with right kind of expertise.

“To Avarea, versatility is the key factor. The company benefits considerably from boldly recruiting promising new skills from various scientific disciplines from mathematics to astronomy. “

“These new, wonderful people are placed in teams with senior data experts, which efficiently exposes them to the practicalities and finer points of data analysis and application. The learning curve is steep.”

One aspect of becoming a senior data expert is to start from the basics. Some 80 per cent of analytics consists of gathering and screening data, which is somewhat perfunctory work. Only the remaining 20 per cent requires more sophisticated approaches.

“This is to say that there are data scientists and there are data scientists. Some of them prefer to pick the cherries, the 20 per cent, and leave the routine to others. Therefore we also need people who do the gathering and screening. Such work also opens avenues to learn from the more experienced specialists.”

About Päivi Karesjoki

Päivi Karesjoki is a strong businesswoman with the ambition to grow business. She is a partner and CEO of Avarea, a company that helps with analytics customers to find relevant information for better decision making. During Päivi’s 20+ years career, she has worked with various companies (large and small) and gained experience in sales, account management, service delivery, product management and marketing.

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