AI talent in high demand in Taiwan: job bank

In this Sept. 28, 2017, photo, David Hanson, the founder of Hanson Robotics, talks with his company's flagship robot Sophia, a lifelike robot powered by artificial intelligence in Hong Kong. Sophia is a creation of the Hong Kong-based startup working on bringing humanoid robots to the marketplace. Hanson envisions a future in which AI-powered robots evolve to become “super-intelligent genius machines” that can help solve mankind’s most challenging problems. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

Taipei, Feb. 22 (CNA) Individuals with skills in developing artificial intelligence (AI) are in high demand in Taiwan, with a local job bank reporting up to 6,000 openings for such jobs in the local market.

The 104 job bank revealed Thursday the findings of its comprehensive analysis of the AI market in Taiwan, which shows a conservative estimate of 6,000 AI-related jobs listed on its job search platform.

The figure marks a 100 percent growth over the past three years, showing the focus that has been placed on AI development by Taiwanese companies as use of the technology has become more widespread since 2016.

According to 104’s head of data analysis Lu Cheng-yu (呂承諭), as AI transitions from laboratories to the marketplace, there is an urgent need by companies for data scientists, algorithm engineers and robotics engineers who can work on developing AI.

The urgency of the demand is evident in the high compensation that these companies are willing to provide to their AI-related talent.

104 found that on average, data scientists have an annual salary of NT$1.22 million (US$41,650), while algorithm engineers enjoy an annual salary of NT$880,000 and robotics engineers NT$830,000.

With such high paychecks, data scientists are required to have at least a master’s degree in a relevant field, with a wide range of knowledge in computer science, physics, finance and even psychology, Lu said.

He noted that AI requires both hard and soft skills, so it is a field that is not exclusive to those with an engineering background.

(By Chiu Po-sheng and Kuan-lin Liu)