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April 16, 2024 - 7 minutes

AI Career Paths: Research to Industry

From researchers to engineers, your future in the AI field is bright.

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Artificial Intelligence

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You’ve known that artificial intelligence is all the rage right now and that’s because practically every single industry is realizing that using AI tools can completely transform their offerings and improve their productivity, efficiency, and overall functioning as a company. But to make the most of all the potential of what AI brings to the table as a professional, you first have to understand exactly what AI is, its applications, and how it can bring you closer to your overall career goals. 

If you want to jump on the rise of artificial intelligence, you’re in good company. Lots of professionals are seeing the benefit of diving into the field of AI and making that their career path; even more companies are looking to hire skilled AI professionals that know how to transform the potential of AI into a powerful asset for their business goals.

If you’re interested in exploring some of the possible career paths within artificial intelligence, setting yourself up for well-compensated roles in high demand is clearly the right choice. Therefore, you’ll need to center your efforts on learning the most in-demand skills and to do so, understanding your options within AI and where you should aim to end up is an important first step. 

Before we dive right into that, however, let’s review why learning AI skills is such a good idea and what you can expect to get back from the time you invest in improving your artificial intelligence skills. 

Why Should You Learn Artificial Intelligence Skills?

Artificial intelligence has brought about the most significant transformation that we’ve ever seen, bringing incredible capabilities to the hands of just about anyone. And the reasons to choose this area to focus your efforts are quite clear:

  • Many well-paying job opportunities: as the potential of AI came to the surface, so did a rush of demand for skilled AI professionals who can harness the power of AI and convert it into desirable results for a company. And because it’s such a new field with a limited number of professionals apt for the role, companies are willing to pay quite a lot for the right person. 

  • Wide career paths ahead: dedicating the time to mastering AI skills will only expand your employment options in the future; as you become more and more proficient in your chosen area of AI, you’ll be able to move into higher-level roles, taking advantage of even higher salaries and cooler opportunities. 

  • Broad skill range: perhaps one of the most noteworthy benefits of AI is that it can allow you to dip your toes into a wide range of areas and skills, taking care of the nitty gritty so that you can expand your abilities beyond what you could offer if you were working on your own. For example, if you choose to employ data analysis in your day-to-day marketing job, something you previously weren’t able to manage on your own, your results will only grow. 

  • Job security: it’s clear that every sector, regardless of if in tech or not, will continue to be affected by the rise of artificial intelligence because its potential is simply incredible. So if you choose to invest your time and resources in artificial intelligence now, your future career will thank you because these skills will not become obsolete–in fact, they’re only going to become more popular. 

The chance to be part of something major is also an incredible reason to dedicate your efforts to AI proficiency. You’ve probably heard lots about the ethical questions surrounding AI and it’s an essential question: how can we make the most of AI technologies while remaining ethical? As AI gets increasingly closer to accurately mimicking human decision making and responses, the issue of AI ethics will become very important. 

If you make the decision to get into AI right now, you’ll play an integral role in the development of ethical AI policies and how AI will be used.

The AI Career Path

Now that we’ve convinced you that AI is the right step forward, you’re probably wondering what roles would be a good fit for you if you choose to become an AI professional. The good news is that there are a ton of available paths; take a look at our list below and see if any pique your interest. 

Machine learning engineer 

This is probably one of the most common roles that you’ll find when you search for an AI role and that’s because ML engineers use data science and artificial intelligence to create ideal programming frameworks for their users. While these systems can be built without the help of AI, introducing artificial intelligence to these systems help speed up the development process, make the data analysis process more accurate, and use automation to free up your time for more exciting tasks. 

To become a machine learning engineer, prioritize your programming language knowledge, such as Python and Java, and other popular software development tools. 

Data scientist

Decisions backed by data are the best and there’s no doubt. But as you start to collect large amounts of data and face missing entries, questionable sources, or a simply mountain-high pile of data, the job can become quite the challenge. That’s why data scientists are turning towards AI to help build the systems that can meet the needs of the company. 

To become a data scientist, focus on the main programming languages used in AI like Python and statistical analysis. 

Research scientist 

If you’re more interested in the theoretical side of artificial intelligence, a career as an AI research scientist may be right up your alley. In this role, you’ll be able to explore the potential of AI; because we’ve only begun exploring the depth of all AI can do, these roles are in high demand and you can expect to see lots of room for growth if you choose to become an AI research scientist. 

To become an AI research scientist, make sure you have a deep understanding of computer models, the frameworks of machine and deep learning, and mathematics. 

Software architects 

Just like software architects build the foundations for programs, AI software architects handle the basis for AI programs, which is a fundamental part of an AI program taking off. Responsible for creating both the original framework for the program and building off of that idea to create the ideal final AI product, software architects have to have experience in software development, IT systems, and computer science. 

To become an AI software architect, make sure you fill your portfolio with evidence of your experience with cloud platforms, software development, and statistics. 

Robotics engineer 

This may have been the first thing that came to mind when you read about jobs in artificial intelligence and there’s a good reason why: for a long time, many people associated AI with robots and flying cars. And although we’ve used AI for more practical means in recent history, robotics engineering is a growing field that’s using AI to discover where robotics can be used to assist humans, such as in the operating room or on assembly lines. 

To become a robotics engineer, you’ll need to add IoT skills to your resume, in addition to machine learning and CAD/CAM knowledge. 

As you can see, artificial intelligence roles are widespread and there’s definitely a role out there that meets your interests and current skills. So if you’re looking to join the AI revolution, consider AI School by Ironhack to learn the necessary skills to pivot towards these incredible opportunities. 

We’ll see you in class! 

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