The data quality disconnect
According to PwC’s CEO Survey 2019, nearly all CEOs (96%) believe data on customers’ and clients’ preferences and needs is important or critical – but only 13% believe it to be comprehensive.
Perception over the inadequacy of this data might change over time, thanks to new data sources, better data processing or simply greater regulation.
For instance, the introduction of GDPR, while implemented as a privacy measure, has forced many companies to go back to the data drawing board.
Embracing the mindset of finding opportunity in adversity, cleaner – more accurate – data is enabling companies to engage more successfully with customers.
Regulation is just one route to more accurate data. Many things need to happen to help bridge the data divide; another important factor to address is the lack of analytical talent.
Recent regulations such as GDPR might be the push some businesses need to reconsider how they gather and use their data.
With data scientists, engineers and analysts ever more in demand, there is a clear role for businesses to play in encouraging a future pipeline from education.
A shortfall in the available number of data scientists could be attributed to several factors. However, one of the obvious solutions is to build a strong pipeline from education – either schools or universities – to address this skills gap.
And more emphasis should be placed to encourage more women in tech, percentages for which are currently worryingly low.
Organisations should continue to commit to collaboration in improving the number of women working in technology, as evidenced and supported by PwC’s Tech She Can Charter.
Bringing more women into data science could both bridge the skills gap and introduce a diversity of thought and perspective that better reflects UK society as a whole.