Statistical consulting with Zombal

This is a guest post by Bene­dict Noel of Zom­bal. Many sta­tis­ti­cians do a lit­tle bit of con­sult­ing in addi­tion to their main job, and Zom­bal pro­vides a way for peo­ple to find such work.


Zom­bal: con­nect­ing free­lancers with projects

Zom­bal is an online mar­ket­place for free­lance work in the maths and sci­ences. Employ­ers (aka “launch­ers” on Zom­bal) can post project list­ings for free, and can­di­dates (aka ‘catch­ers’) bid to ful­fil projects if they have the appro­pri­ate skill set. Can­di­dates can also pop­u­late their pro­files with their skills and expe­ri­ence and employ­ers can browse and approach pre­ferred can­di­dates. If the launcher wants to engage a can­di­date, based on resume and/​or fur­ther com­mu­ni­ca­tions, the next step is to pur­chase cred­its which are locked to the job guar­an­tee­ing that the work is paid for upon suc­cess­ful com­ple­tion (with some room for medi­a­tion in the case of dispute).

Although the site is still in its infancy, so far the most suc­cess­ful type of work has been related to sta­tis­tics and applied math­e­mat­ics. The major­ity of sta­tis­ti­cal work that has been posted is from small com­pa­nies who don’t have the bud­get to employ a per­ma­nent sta­tis­ti­cian. Sta­tis­ti­cal work that’s been suc­cess­fully ful­filled via Zom­bal include the cre­ation of sta­tis­ti­cal mod­els and sur­vey ques­tion­naires as well as analy­sis of data using pack­ages like SPSS or lan­guages like R. Sta­tis­ti­cal work has been car­ried out for a vari­ety of sec­tors rang­ing from med­i­cine to finance. A cou­ple of exam­ples of sta­tis­ti­cal projects com­pleted through Zom­bal in these sec­tors include deter­min­ing the risk of early-​​onset basal cell car­ci­no­mas based upon sta­tis­ti­cal data and regres­sion analy­sis of data from stock and FOREX markets.

Next — con­nect­ing free­lancers with not-​​for-​​profits

Cur­rently we’re look­ing at ways we can start con­nect­ing sta­tis­ti­cians with not-​​for-​​profit organ­i­sa­tions, many of whom des­per­ately need to improve their sta­tis­ti­cal prac­tices and method­olo­gies. We see this as a win-​​win sit­u­a­tion for both the sta­tis­ti­cian and the not-​​for-​​profit: Sta­tis­ti­cians get real world job expe­ri­ence and also a good refer­ral on their resume, while the not-​​for-​​profit receives much needed assis­tance pro-​​rata or at a reduced rate. We began our first trial last week with African not-​​for-​​profit Young Africa Live, and fol­low­ing this pilot, we hope to organ­i­cally grow the num­ber of not-​​for-​​profits that utilise our service.

We’re look­ing to reg­is­ter more sta­tis­ti­cians who are inter­ested in tak­ing on small con­tract posi­tions or poten­tially work for Not-​​For-​​Profits. And, of course not-​​for-​​profits can hire a sta­tis­ti­cian.


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