Here’s a question… What is Chandler Bing's job?
Well we all know what he’s not, and that’s a transpondster, right? If you’re a fan of the popular sitcom, Friends, it’s likely that you know what we’re talking about. And if you’re not a fan (we’re not judging!), then read on and you’ll gain some insight into one of the six friends, Chandler, and how to work towards getting a career like his.
A constant theme throughout the earlier series of the show made the viewers, and the rest of the friends, question what Chandler did for work. We knew that he wore a suit, and carried a briefcase. But this long-running gag about what he actually did every day led to Monica and Rachel briefly losing their apartment.
To answer the question, Chandler works in “statistical analysis and data reconfiguration.” It’s a long one to pronounce, but what is it?
What is Chandler’s job?
Throughout the majority of the show, Chandler essentially worked in Data Science. There are many titles that you can call his career: data science, data processing, and data analysis. But, ultimately he worked in the field of Data and IT, where he would analyse quantitative data and design statistical models to present said data so that the businesses will understand it, and know what to do with it.
It sounds confusing, but Chandler’s job role serves as an essential in most successful businesses, and it’s not as ‘boring’ as some of the other Friend's characters suggested!
Why did he find his job boring?
As Friends is a sitcom, it’s no surprise that you may think Chandler’s job wasn’t very interesting. The gang spent the majority of their time in the coffeehouse and, for the most part, all enjoyed their jobs which complemented their personalities.
So, why would you want a job like Chandler? Well, if you love numbers and problem-solving, this job would be great for you. But there is much more to it.
In a nutshell, the world wasn’t ready to appreciate such an intricate job role. The television show was filmed in the 1990s, back when technology was still in the earlier stages. With Chandler working in the Data and IT industry, we can understand that it was very different to what we see now. The field has, and still is, rapidly advancing, making technology more and more interesting every day.
Today, to work in a job role like Chandler’s requires attention to intricate detail while still holding the personal skills to present this to a group of people. Not everyone understands data, so as a data analyst, you need to be able to portray this in a way which is easier to understand. Therefore, this will require a high level of creativity, analytical thinking, and storytelling.
Good communication and problem-solving skills are necessary to succeed in a career like Chandler’s. It’s not all about staring at numbers on the screen.
Was his career considered successful?
He could work anywhere
Chandler was easily one of the highest-earning friends. Remember his office when he got the promotion? He had a beautiful view of New York City with wall-to-ceiling windows. Not to forget, his promotion was pretty much handed to him after all the work that he did for the business.
In today’s world, data analysts are in demand almost everywhere. You can now work remotely, or anywhere in the world. The smooth transition for Chandler from New York City to Tulsa was admirable, with no mention of any additional complexities in his job role despite being in a completely new state.
Although there are so many working opportunities in this career, remember that it’s a sitcom and you don’t need to relocate if that’s not what you want. In the real world, you will (hopefully) not fall asleep and offer to transfer to Oklahoma, otherwise known as “the sooner state!”
He was financially stable
It wasn’t uncommon for Chandler to financially support Joey while he was looking for acting gigs. The show saw that he would fund the majority of their bills, pay for Joey’s acting lessons, and be able to splash out on fancy dinners with little notice. When it came to Monica and Chandler’s engagement, it was Chandler that had a lot of savings for their future. And, don’t forget, New York City is not a cheap place to live.
It is estimated that in the 1990s to early 2000s, Chandler would have seen his income rise upwards of around $50,000 per annum in his data science career, and the advancement of technology has only led to an increase in the demand for skilled workers in this field.
Employers in the Data, IT and Technology industries are aware of the increasing demand for skilled professionals, such as data analysts and scientists. Businesses need these people to help them make informed decisions, and this is only expected to increase further as data continues to be a valuable commodity for organisations of all sizes.
This huge demand means that, in today’s world, those working in the same field as Chandler will be generously paid, with the average salary of entry-level jobs starting from around £38,000 upwards, while more experienced and senior positions can expect a salary of £75,000 to £196,000.* Although the average earnings depend heavily on factors such as region and experience, it is fair to suggest that a career in this field offers competitive pay.
The only time that Chandler’s income wasn’t so healthy was when he began to pursue a career in advertising, which leads us to our next point …
Didn’t he leave his job?
You’re right, he did leave his job, but this doesn’t mean that you can’t be happy in this career field. As we’ve established, the field is much more different today than it was back then, and the long-running joke that he was the only friend who didn’t necessarily suit his job needed to be concluded.
He ultimately left his job as he didn’t want to live in Oklahoma and away from his wife and friends. Whereas today, with the high demand for people in this field, it is highly unlikely that you’ll find yourself working somewhere you don’t want to be.
Chandler then went into advertising, which is what he majored in during college. This can be considered a completely different job, and certainly a different field. However, this means one thing: he had transferable skills!
Through advertising, Chandler was essentially aiming to find the best way to sell a product. To capture attention to the product, you need great communication skills, attention to detail, creativity, and can tell a good story… could he BE any more adaptable?
All of these skills are transferable throughout many job roles, all of which were required during Chandler Bing’s job as a data analyst, data scientist, data processor or, better known as, a transpondster!
So, there we have it. Chandler was well-paid, adaptable, and highly skilled, but the world just wasn’t ready to appreciate how interesting his important job role was. And that’s why you should be more like Chandler Bing!
How do you become more like Chandler Bing?
If you’re interested in a career in the Data and IT industry, take a look at our Data Analyst Level 4 apprenticeship. The skills, experience and knowledge that will be taught by expert tutors will guide you down the path of success.
If you are interested in kick-starting your career in this evolving industry, encourage your employer to get in touch with our team to find out more.
* Harnham UK Data & Analytics Salary Guide 2022
All images courtesy of FRIENDS (TV Show) Official Facebook Page