Report: 80% of employees say they will stay with a company that offers data training

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A new study from Tableau and Forrester Research shows that data skills are growing in importance, but training is lagging behind. Eighty-two percent of decision makers surveyed expect basic data literacy from employees in every department, including product, IT, HR and operations. And the expectations are only growing. By 2025, almost 70% of employees are expected to use data intensively in their work, up from 40% in 2018.

While business leaders and employees agree that data skills are becoming increasingly important, awareness does not translate into data training investment. Only 39% of organizations make data training available to all employees, with the responsibility to train people who usually fall at department heads or team levels. Meanwhile, nearly three-quarters of decision-makers believe that employees should strengthen their data skills through ad-hoc, on-the-job knowledge, usually from colleagues or trial and error.

While the global data literacy gap is obvious, so is the opportunity. With companies rapidly moving to digital-first models, data literacy — people’s ability to understand and interact with data to the right degree — can be either a stepping stone or a stumbling block.

Even small training investments drive business performance, employee retention and innovation. Upskilling initiatives, both formal and informal, deliver clear benefits to employees and businesses, including improved performance, customer and employee satisfaction, and employee retention.

Employers across the board value data-savvy employees — they view them as making better and faster decisions, while being more productive and innovative. Employees agree: 83% believe they make better decisions and 82% make faster decisions when using data. In addition, nearly 80% of employees surveyed say they are more likely to stay with a company that adequately trains them with the data skills they need.

Forrester surveyed more than 2,000 executives, decision-makers and individual employees in ten countries, including Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Mexico, Singapore, the UK and the US. Respondents work at global companies with more than 500 employees.

Read the full report from Tableau and Forrester Research.

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