NSW public servants eager for data skills

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Thursday, 31 January, 2019

NSW public servants eager for data skills

NSW public sector officials are overwhelmingly confident in the transformative potential of data and are interested about learning how to safely and effectively apply it in their everyday roles.

A survey of subscribers to the state government's digital.nsw digital transformation portal found that 94% believe they could benefit from learning more about data in their current role.

This enthusiasm extends across government — survey responses were received from all government clusters, and 81% of respondents confirmed that they are not currently data professionals.

According to the respondents, the top data skill priorities for respondents include learning how to use data to improve decisions and service delivery, and finding data to help them complete their work, creating and using data visualisations, as well as understanding data governance, privacy and security issues.

Meanwhile, the top data challenges that respondents are already facing in their roles include accessing and using data, as well as data quality.

Respondents are most interested in learning about data through e-learning modules, online tools and resources, or face-to-face learning.

The NSW Department of Finance, Services and Industry plans to use the findings of the survey to help refine and augment its data skills initiatives.

Key recommendations of the report include building a data practice team to help strengthen data skills on an agency basis, establishing a Data Champions Network to foster collaboration across government and share data-related resources, and using the state's dMarketplace program to expand the policy, practice and platform elements that support data skills and maturity.

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/4Max

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