The role of the data strategist was introduced in 2020 to dispel fear and unlock the power of data and AI. These strategists are essential to bringing use cases into the open, ensuring knowledge development and maintenance and driving the overall data fluency of the organization.
In the last two years, the increasingly complex demands on strategists have led to the evolution of the role into three profiles: Transformation Leader, Operation Leader, and Product Owner. This article is about a fourth profile which is on the horizon: the Data Education Strategist.
Why has the role of the Data Education Strategist emerged?
The role of the Data Education Strategist (sometimes referred to as translator) has arrived because neither academia nor the business world is nurturing enough people with the appropriate data skills.
In the academic world—even if there are some examples of leaders coming through, universities and higher education institutions are not meeting the demand for data and AI professionals. Often, courses are either too business-oriented or too data-oriented, failing to offer the hybrid profiles that the market requires.”
Meanwhile in the business community, many firms simply have not got the time or expertise to integrate learning and development programs into work routines.
Some companies have tried to counter the shortage of skills by developing their own training. Firms use online course providers like Coursea to help with mentoring. Other companies develop dedicated in-house training environments for data science and engineering.
However these programs are often very technical—occuring in a lab-like environment with little relevance to the day-to-day workings of a business.
The rapid advancements in Generative AI, which can create content or models with little human intervention, have further intensified the need for professionals who can bridge the gap between AI technologies and business applications.
What are the objectives of the Data Education Strategist?
Data Education Strategists bridge the gap between data and the business domain. In short, they design the path to data fluency, establishing data cultures within organizations and allowing employees to solve problems with data for themselves.
As well as mobilizing more technical learning, they create Citizen Data Scientists. These people have strong analytical skills and are power users of traditional programs like Excel. They use applications to extract insights from data without formal training in advanced mathematics or statistics.
However, other elements are becoming more and more important. Data Education Strategists need to ensure that employees understand the ethical implications and potential risks of using Generative AI, such as data privacy concerns, biases in the generated content, and the potential for misuse in spreading disinformation.
How does the Data Education Strategist spread data literacy?
Data Education Strategists focus on learning strategy and instructional design. In this work they collaborate with HR teams. To do their job, they need to undertake the following:
- Understand the data strategy of the organization and its components
- Understand the data capabilities of an organization: This means they should know the platforms, use cases, and strategies that are either in place or in development.
- Understand the learning development goals and the learning solutions on offer: What skills already exist within an organization? What training is currently available? And what are the numbers of staff involved?
- Set up data transformation awareness programs: They develop learning journeys based on business problems. This involves spreading knowledge around the methodologies, frameworks, and practical experiences that lead to data-based solutions.
- Develop training modules focused on the responsible use of Generative AI, ensuring employees are aware of potential pitfalls and best practices for mitigating risks associated with the technology.
- Organize events: This includes activities such as webinars, workshops, and other sorts of gatherings focused on data, analytics, and AI.
Get data impact. Deploy Data Education Strategists.
These days, data and AI skills are a precious commodity in the business world. Bringing to life the digital transformation requires new, specialized abilities, but there is strong competition over talent—and supply isn’t always meeting demand.
That’s why we’re seeing the advent of the Data Education Strategist. The profile is designed to strengthen data literacy and fill the skills shortage. They create data cultures and harness training programs, so firms can unleash the power of data and AI.
Furthermore, as Generative AI continues to transform industries, Data Education Strategists will play a crucial role in equipping organizations with the knowledge and skills needed to responsibly harness the power of AI technologies while navigating the associated challenges and threats