1 The aim of data competence & culture
With the daily establishment of better and better tools and methods in the field of data management, analysis, and automated forecasting in all business software areas, the training of the corresponding users and people who interact with it is lagging behind in many companies. The growing gap between data science specialists and actual consumers creates a very high-risk potential. This has already been recognised by the market and in research & education, and has been proven in many different initiatives and detailed studies. The current buzzwords in this field are data science, data literacy, data competence, and so-called “factfulness”.
In most cases, however, the training paths offered are based on individual tools or specialist areas and can therefore only be used to a limited extent to establish a uniform data culture throughout the company. However, a uniform data language and cross-departmental cooperation and mentoring are absolutely necessary for this area in particular.
2 BE-terna training in ”Improving Data Competence & Culture“
With the training series "Improving Data Competence & Culture", BE-terna can offer each company its own "best practices" and a company-wide training and development program. This inclusive concept integrates every department in the company and is manufacturer-independent. The series is offered bilingually (in English and German) and can also be carried out simultaneously and integratively in one company.
2.1 Result-orientated iterative procedure
As with every measure to increase quality, the goal is continuous improvement and not just the one-time attainment of a training certificate. For this reason, BE-terna can offer each company or partner an overall concept, which takes into account the current company-wide requirements and can be used in the long term without major additional expenditure. At its heart, great value is placed on learning based on daily work. The increase of data competence & culture can only be experienced and consolidated in real business areas with the result that real goals are achieved.
3 Mediation via several training channels and methods
Although this is also a modular concept, a wide range of learning opportunities and media can be used to create a profile that can be adapted to each company and each user. The following areas represented in the framework can be provided for companies. These always pursue the goal of being integrated into the company and adapted to the respective current goal.
Since the same concept is already in place at BE-terna, it can also be used in a version that is comprehensive in both companies. However, the exclusive use of BE-terna infrastructure is not recommended.
3.1 Applied methods and technologies
Like every qualitative improvement process, this one can only be based on one that actually exists within the company. Thus, the commissioning company is the technological and decisive basis for the method. Research carried out by BE-terna in the future desired area of application makes this approach possible. The methods and technologies established within the company for data competence and culture are used and supplemented accordingly.
Of course, business software projects that are currently being introduced are an excellent opportunity to increase data competence and culture, but this possibility should not be overestimated. However, clear orientation and adaptation to the technology strategy of the respective company is a matter of course.
3.2 Living digital transformation
Due to constantly increasing levels of digital transformation, this development area of data competence & culture is particularly important to increase. However, we normally advise against exclusive virtualisation of all workshop, learning and development modules, as well as quality audits. However, we can currently confirm a trend in this direction and the continuing professionalisation of these developments.
4 Modules in 5 areas
Each of the modules used in the areas shown in Figure 1 can either be taught as a BE-terna module or can also be transferred to the company’s respective internal branding with little additional effort.
4.1 Area target agreement and individual assessments
If the client is planning an overall introduction of "Improving Data Competence & Culture", this is usually the first module:
4.1.1 How do we live with the data and information culture today
A one-day workshop at management level that takes place outside the normal, familiar environment. For example, a common leisure interest at management level is a good way to conduct it. On this day, the result of a culture check carried out by BE-terna at the company beforehand is jointly evaluated and translated into a corresponding internal data culture initiative by means of mediation.
If the client has already defined the data culture or handed it over to an appropriate responsible person, the BE-terna program usually starts with this:
4.1.2 Individual evaluation of future participants
This can be done through an anonymous questionnaire, a personalised online test with self-assessment, or a short workshop. This area can also be integrated into the in-house training technology. The website, thedataliteracyproject.org, can be seen here not as an example but rather as an orientation.
4.2 Instructor-led & self-directed learning in each area
From each company's own experience and their experience in the market, a generalised learning concept for a company in the area of data competence & culture may be considered to be almost impossible. Our offered mix of self-directed and instructor-led learning has proven to be much more successful. To begin with, however, a one-day workshop with the people involved in the programme (on-site or virtual) is the best approach.
4.2.1 Modules in continuous education
Possible modules are offered in this training program for each client and are adapted accordingly. Based on the previous evaluations and assessments, an individual learning path is generated for each group and each participant:
- Best Practices in Data Competence & Culture (Introduction)
- Strengthen fact-based management
- Mentoring in the company-wide data culture
- Further training in data presentation and communication skills
- General Statistics & Analysis Basics (Basic Course)
- Extension modules on individual topics (e.g. regression types)
- Continuing education in visualisations & digital mediation in the current technology of the company
- Training in business software
- Thinking in the data culture
- Critical and analytical thinking
- Improve fact-based decision-making competence
- Data journalism (basics)
- Data competence & culture in current technologies
- Further training in the software to maintain an overview
- Develop and learn the basics of statistics and software languages.
- Training in the appropriate business software
- Establishment of a common data language in the company
- Establishment of data training for new employees
- Suggestion system KVP & error culture
This list cannot be exhaustive, as it is also constantly evolving and expanding.
4.3 Certifications & Audits
On the one hand, this area shows the development of each individual person in the company, continuously sets new goals for further development, and enables transparent reflection and communication of the goals already achieved. However, this is not primarily about evaluation, but rather about the motivation of the teams and employees. These goals can be achieved in several ways:
- Internal certifications
- External certifications
- Internal and/or external audits
In doing so, the attention and reflection on effectiveness must be constantly evaluated.
4.4 Academic cooperation
Due to rapid digital transformation, academic cooperation in many areas is of great value to a company. Here the concept of Data Competence & Culture offers either cooperation with academic institutions via the BE-terna programs, or support for the self-initiative of the client. Necessary specialist departments at the client company are always divided into Human Resources and Development Departments.
5 Important preparatory steps
5.1 Non-disclosure agreement
If this does not yet exist between the client and BE-terna, we recommend that due to the sensitive information on both sides, an agreement to this effect be signed before any further interaction.
With this training concept BE-terna Business Intelligence Services provides a system that improves your use of business software in all areas of the company and continuously reduces the risk of misinterpretation of data and information
We see this as a great opportunity to bring the communication and information standard within every company closer to the future quality requirements in digital transformation. We ask you to expect "more" from us and your employees, and also to set very high-quality goals for the company for this project.