A statistical consultant provides statistical advice, analysis and training. Clients can come from a wide variety of sectors including business, medicine, environment and government, but they all have one thing in common; they wish to collect and analyse data to make evidence-based decisions.
What does a statistical consultant do?
Consultants are responsible for liaising with clients, delivering statistical analysis and research, and for providing statistical training, advice and support.
Statistical consultants often provide bespoke statistical analyses tailored specifically to the requirements of their clients. This means that the techniques used will often differ from one project to another. As it is unlikely that these techniques will have been covered by undergraduate and postgraduate studies, ‘on the job’ learning can sometimes be necessary.
Take a look at our profile of statistical consultant Lynsey McColl to learn more.
What qualifications do I need?
Many statistical consultants will need to have an MSc in statistics or equivalent. More information on the various MSc courses in Statistics available throughout the UK is provided on the Committee of Professors of Statistics webpage.
Some statistical consultants may also have a PhD in statistics. Whilst this is not a requirement to becoming a statistical consultant, it does provide additional skills in research and teaching.
How do I find a job as a statistical consultant?
If you would like to be a statistical consultant employed by a commercial organisation or a university, then job vacancies are usually advertised in electronic mailing lists (e.g. Allstat), specialised recruitment websites (e.g. jobs.ac.uk and the RSS job board).
What are the career prospects of a statistical consultant?
With more experience a statistical consultant may expect to progress to a more senior role within a company with the opportunity to mentor more junior colleagues and project manage larger client deliverables. There may also be the possibility of moving into a management role with line management responsibilities (including developing more junior staff) and other business responsibilities.