Weekly News Digest: 12th - 16th April 2021

Talitha Boitel-Gill our consultant managing the role
Posting date: 4/16/2021 9:21 AM
This is Harnham’s weekly news digest, the place to come for a quick breakdown of the week’s top news stories from the world of Data & Analytics.     

Express Pharma: The five biggest data challenges for life sciences


Life Sciences has grown exponentially over the past 12 months. As the COVID-19 pandemic devastated the world, Life Science companies were in a race against time to create a life-changing vaccine and help us all back on the road to recovery. 

In 2019, the Life Science market was valued at around $7.5bn. After this year’s influx of activity, the market is estimated to grow by over double in the next decade, reaching $18bn by 2030. 

However, despite the positive growth the industry has had, this doesn’t mean Life Sciences will be free of challenges. In fact, with such a spike in the amount of data held by so many Life Science companies as they tried to work on a vaccine, data storage is now one of the main concerns for anyone working within the field. 

In this article by Express Pharma, Vimal Venkatram, Country Manager for Snowflake India, highlights the five key data hurdles Life Sciences will continue to have to overcome in the following decade. These include data performance, data exchange and collaboration, data quality, data management and scaling, and regulatory compliance. 

Read the full story here

Harnham: How can organisations tap into the huge pool of neurodiverse data talent?


For many companies, the past year has led to an increased focus on diversity and inclusion within businesses – a fantastic step forward. However, when we think of diversity, we usually assume people are talking about gender, ethnicity, sexuality and perhaps even physical disability. One area that is regularly missed from discussion is that of neurodiversity. 

An umbrella term coined by sociologist, Judy Singer, neurodiversity can cover a wide range of neurological conditions such as dyslexia, autism, ADHD, ADD and dyspraxia.

Our head of internal recruitment, Charlie Waterman, explores why neurodiverse talent shouldn’t be overlooked, and how Data & Analytics specifically can do more to tap into and harness this incredible pool of talent.`


Exploring how employers can create a smooth recruitment process, successful onboarding programmes and retention schemes, this article highlights how all of this can be tailored to be accessible for anyone with an invisible disability.

To read more on this topic, click here.

Computer Weekly: What has a year of homeworking meant for the DPO?


Employers in a significant number of industries across the world have had to uproot from the office to working from home because of the COVID-19 pandemic. For many of these employers, it appears that remote working, or a hybrid model of working, will become the norm post-pandemic. 

But what has this sudden shift meant for the likes of Data Protection Officers (DPOs)? Most of these professionals have had to get to grips with managing and handling sensitive data from the comfort of their own living room. According to data from IBM, 70 per cent of DPOs believe that the shift to remote working will increase the likelihood of data breaches. So how can DPOs enjoy the benefits and perks of working from home, without the stress of poorly managed or breached data?

In this article by Computer Weekly, steps are outlined on how DPOs can work closely with IT teams to minimise any data risk that could happen. This includes:

  • Not allowing DPOs access to everything if it’s not necessary
  • Discouraging local storage of data
  • Regularly reviewing security standards

To read the full article, visit the website here

Solutions Review: The three best Data Engineering books on our reading lists


There’s no better feeling than getting stuck into a really good book. Not only can it be a great way to escape the stresses of everyday life, but by continuously absorbing new information, your knowledge on a specific subject can grow immensely. 

Any branch of Data & Analytics, but especially Data Engineering, requires employees to always be thinking one step ahead, staying on top of new trends and keeping up to date with specific coding languages. While everyone learns in very different ways, reading is a brilliant education tool. Whether you’re a visual learner, an auditory learner or a reading learner, books and audiobooks could be the key to expanding your knowledge. 

Solutions Review provides Data Engineers with three of the best books on the market at the moment to help you keep on top of your professional development.

  • Data Driven Science and Engineering by Brunton and Kutz
  • Data Engineering with Python by Crickard
  • An introduction to agile Data Engineering by using data vault 2.0 by Graziano

To read more about each of these books, click here

We've loved seeing all the news from Data & Analytics in the past week, it’s a market full of exciting and dynamic opportunities. To learn more about our work in this space, get in touch with us at  info@harnham.com.    


Related blog & news

With over 10 years experience working solely in the Data & Analytics sector our consultants are able to offer detailed insights into the industry.

Visit our Blogs & News portal or check out the related posts below.

Weekly News Digest: 3rd - 7th May 2021

This is Harnham’s weekly news digest, the place to come for a quick breakdown of the week’s top news stories from the world of Data & Analytics.      Personnel Today: Top 50 firms for gender equality named This week it was great to see that leading recruitment publication, Personnel Today, reported on the organisations that have continued efforts to improve gender equality over the past year. These names were also featured on The Times Top 50 Employers for Women. Household names including PepsiCo UK & Ireland and Royal Mail; public sector bodies including the Department for Work and Pensions and the Department for Transport; law firms including Allen and Overy and Pinsent Masons; and financial and insurance institutions including Santander and Aviva all take a spot on the 2021 list. The pandemic has, without doubt, placed greater emphasis on how much progress still needs to be made to achieve gender equality. However, it’s great to see awareness, recognition and celebration of organisations that are contributing to the narrative of success for women in business. See more on this here. Retail Insight Network: What online retailers can expect as high street footfall increases “The fact that e-commerce and social media are intrinsically entwined has allowed brands to engage directly with customers through virtual means.” These are the expert thoughts of Oracle NetSuite retail industry principal Zak Rafiq, talking to Retail Insight Network about what retailers can expect amid increasing footfall and why a direct-to-consumer strategy may be imperative in the current retail landscape. A successful direct-to-consumer strategy can put online retailers in control and offers a good opportunity to drive revenue without the costly overhead associated with physical retail. By operating in an online space, retailers can build a strong understanding of their consumer profile, in turn crafting a strategy for how to engage them (particularly post-pandemic) and generating an impactful and long-lasting customer experience. To read more on this topic, click here. KDNuggets: Best Podcasts for Machine Learning Podcasts are continuing to surge in popularity. In particular from a business perspective, those that feature interviews with industry experts can prove to be a vital tool for professionals to learn about subfields, and the latest innovations in their area of expertise – and beyond! This great summary article from KDNuggets outlines the best podcasts to help data professionals, who are either keen to learn or already seasoned practitioners, get a better understanding of machine learning. A few mentioned on the list include: Gradient DissentDeepMind: The PodcastLex Fridman PodcastChai Time Data ScienceMachine Learning Street Talks To read the full article and add these to your subscriptions, read more here.  TechRepublic: Microsoft is boosting its support for the Python programming ecosystem We love this article from TechRepublic, sharing the positive news from Microsoft this week, as the organisation is set to increase its support for the Python community. This means that the programming language will be pushed forward in emerging fields like data science. A pretty big step for the industry. What does this mean? Well, the tech giant has pledged $150,000 in financial sponsorship to the Python Software Foundation, the non-profit organization that holds the rights to the language – the creator of Python, Guido van Rossum, even came out of retirement last year to work with Microsoft on their plans to support the community of Python programmers. It will certainly be worth keeping an eye on where this goes next. We’ll definitely be paying close attention! To read more about this, click here.  We've loved seeing all the news from Data & Analytics in the past week, it’s a market full of exciting and dynamic opportunities. To learn more about our work in this space, get in touch with us at info@harnham.com.    

Three Years Of GDPR: The Evolution Of Data Protection

Since its inception in 1991, the World Wide Web – or the internet – has grown immeasurably, with its capabilities exceeding the expectations of anyone who witnessed its implementation only 30 years ago. Now, it’s hard to think of a world without it; where would we be without unlimited knowledge at the touch of a button, the ability to maintain friendships with people halfway across the world or cat videos? Of course, the internet isn’t always a positive place. As the popularity of the online world grew, there also became an increased risk, particularly to our identities and our money.  In 1998, to combat the mismanagement of data both online and offline, Parliament passed the Data Protection Act. Compiled of eight different principles, from fair and lawful processing to disallowing data transfers from outside of the EU, this law aimed to help reduce the risk of data mismanagement and data breaches, while holding the power to fine and prosecute those who didn’t comply.  In January 2012, the European Commission wanted to take these laws one step further. As we began to enter a digital-first age, where the online world began to blend seamlessly with our daily lives, questions around whether the Data Protection Act of 1998 was robust enough to protect EU citizens.  On May 25th, 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was introduced. Not only did this new law enforce tougher rules around data protection, including the protection of genetic data and biometrics, but it made business data collection far more transparent. For the first time, internet users were able to see exactly how and why their data was being used, and they were given the autonomy to opt-out of giving away sensitive data. Additionally, consumers now have the right to request ‘to be forgotten’, with all stored data being wiped from a business’ database with the click of a button.  As we edge closer to the three-year anniversary of the implementation of GDPR, we look at how the new laws have impacted both consumers and businesses, for better and for worse.  Consumer trust Both sides of the coin tell a very different story when it comes to consumer trust and GDPR. The general consensus amongst businesses across the EU is that GDPR has greatly improved consumer trust, with 73 per cent reporting that the regulations have notably improved data security. Unfortunately, this sentiment isn’t shared by consumers.  84 per cent feel that GDPR hasn’t been taken seriously by businesses, and the level of security they feel when giving data to certain sectors varies hugely. While financial services, such as banks, have gained nearly half of consumers’ trust, hospitality, for example, are lagging behind with not even a quarter of consumers happy with the level of security.  But, looking at data breaches that have occurred since the implementation of GDPR, this level of dissatisfaction and worry from consumers comes as no surprise. From 280 million Microsoft users’ data being left unprotected to over a million of Mashable’s staff and consumer data being leaked by hackers, GDPR hasn’t necessarily solved the problems it was set out to manage, and consumers are concerned.  Consumer control Despite the worry of continued breaches and hacks, consumers do feel however that GDPR has improved the control they have over their own data. From being able to opt-in instead of having to opt-out, to having greater choice over the information given away through cookies, consumers feel much happier to be able to walk away from the brands they don’t trust and/or have no interest in.  Education around Data privacy  GDPR, since its inception, has been something that has eluded many. Filled with jargon and lacking much in the way of accessible educational assets, consumers – while aware of their data concerns – are still unsure of how to protect themselves against hacks or breaches. For example, only 14 per cent of internet users encrypt private conversations and only a third change their passwords regularly.  While GDPR has undoubtedly been a positive step forward for businesses and consumers alike, it is clear there is room for great improvement. It is expected that as the world continues to evolve into a digital-first society, especially post-COVID as many of us move online for good in our working lives, and the need for much-improved data security becomes paramount, GDPR laws and business compliance will need to continue to evolve and improve and fast.  If you're looking for your next opportunity, or to build out your Data & Analytics team, we can help. Take a look at our latest opportunities or get in touch with one of our expert consultants to find out more. 

RELATED Jobs

recently viewed jobs