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Analytics Skills Gap Hinders Digital Transformation Efforts for Businesses

Alteryx, Inc., the Analytics Automation Company, announced survey findings that highlight lack of data skills as a leading roadblock to organizations’ digital transformation efforts in the United States. In a poll of 1,500+ U.S. data workers, Alteryx found that while most executives see data skills as a core business enabler, few companies are enabling access to analytics across the enterprise.

The study found that while 78 percent of business leaders agree that data and analytics enable them to make decisions faster, 62 percent say they are not making the full use of the data they have, and 48 percent of C-Suite leaders fear they are falling behind the competition as their data strategy stagnates.

Leadership teams are focused on digital transformation, but research shows workforces are not adequately equipped to extract insights from their data. While 58 percent of C-Suite executives say they have driven business-changing outcomes through self-service analytics, only 12 percent of non-leadership workers reported having the same opportunity. Just 29 percent of the workers surveyed are aware of the importance of data, fewer than a quarter say their entire organization has access to data, and fewer than a third say they have the tools they need to make data-driven decisions.

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Despite business leaders valuing data to inform decision making, workers feel unprepared to unlock the full potential of their data for day-to-day business processes. Underscoring the training disconnect, 61% of business leaders in the U.S. claim that data training and mentoring is available in their business while fewer than a quarter of non-leadership employees agree.

Analytics for All

One way Alteryx is addressing the data skills gap is through its no-cost SparkED analytics education program, which launched as the brainchild of Alteryx cofounder Libby Duane Adams in May 2021. In just one year, the program has grown to partner with more than 800 education institutions in 45+ countries.

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To keep pace with the market demand for analytics skills, Alteryx recently appointed Nathalie Mainland as senior vice president and global head of SparkED. In this new role, Mainland will focus on scaling the program to provide even more academic faculty and students with free renewable education software licenses, teaching materials, learning pathways, scholarships, certification preparation, paid internships, and a global job board.

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“During my time at the University of Colorado (CU) Boulder, I had the opportunity to participate in the SparkED program which taught me how to use Alteryx Designer to prep, blend, and analyze different types of data,” said Claire McCollough, SparkED graduate and 2022 Alteryx ACE Inductee. “The Alteryx skills I learned through the SparkED program were fundamental to my success as a data engineer last summer and for my new role as a forensic accounting intern at a major accounting firm.”

“Claire is an amazing testament to how SparkED empowers students and job seekers with in-demand analytics skills and certifications that set them up for success in their careers and beyond,” said Adams. “Through our Inspire programming, business leaders will learn the importance of democratizing data analytics via upskilling their teams to streamline current manual processes. Meanwhile, educators will be able to network with industry peers and learn how to best equip their students with analytics skills that help them stand out when they enter the workforce.”

SparkED will host an array of programs at Alteryx Inspire 2022, the company’s annual customer and partner conference taking place in Denver, CO from May 16-19. This year’s programming will present attendees with the opportunity to:

  • Listen to a discussion panel around the need for additional education on data analytics in nearly every academic discipline where keen insights from data are required.
  • Hear from Alteryx Co-Founder and Chief Advocacy Officer Libby Duane Adams about how customers, educators, and graduates are finding success from Alteryx’s SparkED program.
  • Meet faculty and students at the SparkED booth and discover how learning analytics skills through the program is impacting their lives.

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[To share your insights with us, please write to sghosh@martechseries.com]

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