Exploring the Demand for Non-Technical AI Talent Across Industries

Artificial intelligence (AI) is changing the way we do business, leading to a huge demand for people skilled in AI. But it's not just about finding people who can write code.

by Faruk Imamovic
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Exploring the Demand for Non-Technical AI Talent Across Industries
© Getty Images/Tristan Fewings

Artificial intelligence (AI) is changing the way we do business, leading to a huge demand for people skilled in AI. But it's not just about finding people who can write code. Businesses in all sorts of areas really want to use AI to get more done, spend less, and come up with new ideas.

As technology keeps changing, there's a growing need for folks who understand the nitty-gritty of AI and can also figure out how to use it to make smart business moves.

The AI Talent Rush

As organizations vie to leverage AI capabilities, the role of human talent in navigating this complex terrain has never been more critical.

"Companies are desperate to get people figuring out AI for their organizations," notes J.T. O'Donnell, a seasoned career coach. This urgency has paved the way for a new wave of job roles tailored to bridge the technical and business facets of AI application.

A glance at job listings on platforms like Indeed and LinkedIn reveals a variety of positions that demand a nuanced understanding of AI without necessarily requiring programming expertise. This trend underscores a broader shift in the job market, where adaptability and cross-disciplinary skills are becoming key assets.

Navigating the Non-Technical Pathways

Despite the technical foundation of AI, there is a growing cohort of roles that rely more on strategic, ethical, and communicative competencies. For instance, AI product managers play a pivotal role in translating technical capabilities into market-ready solutions, ensuring that AI products meet the nuanced needs of businesses unfamiliar with the intricacies of AI.

Salaries for these positions are compelling, with AI product managers earning between $120,000 and $400,000 annually, reflecting the critical nature of their role in the AI product lifecycle. Similarly, AI ethics specialists are emerging as vital players in ensuring that AI deployment aligns with ethical standards and societal values, with potential earnings ranging from $90,000 to $150,000.

Sales engineers with a grasp of machine learning principles are becoming indispensable for demonstrating the business value of AI tools, commanding salaries between $100,000 and $200,000. Meanwhile, AI business analysts and data annotators offer crucial support in identifying opportunities for AI integration and training AI models, respectively, with salaries that vary based on the scope of their responsibilities.

Emerging roles like prompt engineers and AI product designers highlight the industry's need for professionals who can enhance the usability and human-centered design of AI applications, with salaries reflecting the specialized skills required in these areas.

Lastly, the article touches on the niche yet vital roles of AI policy analysts and sector specialists, who navigate the regulatory and application-specific landscapes of AI, illustrating the diverse opportunities available to non-technical professionals in the AI sector.

ChatGPT© Getty Images/Leon Neal

AI Product Manager: The Strategist Bridging Two Worlds

AI product managers are at the forefront of transforming AI capabilities into tangible products that businesses can utilize effectively.

Their work involves closely collaborating with engineers and designers to ensure the product meets market needs while also being technically viable. The role demands not only an understanding of AI but also a strong grasp of market trends, user experience, and project management.

With salaries ranging significantly, the compensation reflects the crucial role these professionals play in the success of AI applications.

AI Ethics Specialist: The Conscience of AI Development

As AI becomes more integrated into daily life, the importance of ethical considerations grows.

AI ethics specialists are tasked with ensuring that AI technologies are developed and implemented responsibly, considering potential societal impacts. This role requires a deep understanding of ethical principles, legal standards, and the technical nuances of AI.

By focusing on mitigating risks and fostering transparency, these specialists help steer AI development towards beneficial outcomes for society.

AI Sales Engineer: The Technical Sales Maestro

Sales engineers in the AI domain use their understanding of machine learning to tailor and sell AI solutions effectively.

They need to possess a blend of technical knowledge and sales acumen, able to articulate the benefits of AI tools to a non-technical audience. This role is critical as it bridges the gap between the potential of AI technology and practical business applications, ensuring that clients understand the value AI can bring to their operations.

AI Business Analyst: The Navigator of AI Integration

AI business analysts play a key role in identifying opportunities within organizations where AI can bring about significant improvements. These professionals analyze business processes and recommend AI solutions to enhance efficiency and productivity.

Success in this role requires a mix of analytical skills, an understanding of AI technologies, and the ability to communicate complex ideas clearly.

AI Data Annotator: The Architect of AI Learning

At the heart of every AI model is data, and AI data annotators ensure that this data is accurately labeled to train models effectively.

Though this role may not require advanced technical skills, it demands attention to detail, patience, and a methodical approach to handling vast datasets. Data annotators are the unsung heroes of the AI world, laying the foundation for sophisticated AI systems by enhancing the quality and reliability of the training data.

Prompt Engineer: Crafting Conversations with AI

Prompt engineers specialize in designing interactions that make AI chatbots and virtual assistants more human-like. This unique role requires a blend of creativity, understanding of human psychology, and technical insight into how AI models function.

By refining the prompts that guide AI interactions, these engineers play a pivotal role in making AI accessible and engaging for users.

AI Product Designer: Shaping the AI User Experience

The role of an AI product designer goes beyond aesthetics, focusing on creating intuitive and user-friendly interfaces for AI applications.

This requires a deep understanding of user-centered design principles and the technical limitations of AI. By prioritizing functionality, AI product designers ensure that AI tools are not only powerful but also accessible to a wide range of users.

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