It’s really gratifying to see Data Science becoming a primary means of strategic differentiation – the companies on Fast Company’s list enjoy a competitive advantage from their investment and it takes relatively little capital outlay to achieve it: data science talent, some data storage and compute resources, and an environment in which to innovate.
That last part – the environment – is important and often overlooked. At Stitch Fix, Data Science reports to the CEO. This enables the department to define and drive their own tooling, workflow, and competencies. Further, we’ve designed the Data Science roles to provide autonomy, mastery, and impact; many of our Data Scientists own capabilities from end-to-end, taking on all aspects of problem-framing, modeling, implementation, product management, measurement and communication. We call it the “Full Stack Data Scientist” and it is such a fulfilling role.
And, with the rich data that our business model affords, the applications are vast and diverse! From recommendation algorithms to inventory management algorithms to logistic algorithms to matchmaking algorithms – there’s even fashion design algorithms! In some cases, we’ve exhausted what machine learning can achieve and have also incorporated even more sophisticated processors – humans! With access to more than 3,400 human stylists, we can harness the power of improvisation, empathy, aesthetics, and the ability to relate to other humans. Together, humans and machines can produce better outcomes than either one alone and represent the future of work.
Finally, there’s impact! Is there nothing more thrilling than compelling change? Not just change, but measurable change – often, right down to causal impact! It’s such a noble way to compete as it brings efficiencies that benefit both consumers and businesses alike.
You can learn more about how Stitch Fix works by visiting our Algorithms Tour or by reading our blog posts on Multithreaded (a short list of some of our favorites are below). If this content resonates with you, checkout out our careers page for openings on Stitch Fix’s Algorithms Team.
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