Nine in 10 business leaders surveyed in Singapore are keen on hiring data-literate employees, regardless of their team size or job role, especially for non-data specialised job roles. In fact, close to half (48%) are willing to pay up to 10% more for someone who is data-literate for a role that did not require data specialisation; and for 33% of the leaders surveyed, they are willing to bump this premium to 20%.

This shows how being data competent has transcended its typically specialised job scope, as published in the NTUC LearningHub Data Skills Report 2020. Changing expectations among business leaders require everyone, even those in non-data related jobs, to widen their knowledge on applying data to their work.

With that said, the report highlighted 10 data-related skills that employers believe are most necessary in today's day and age, yet are also among the most lacking skills. These 10 skills are:

  1. Data analytics
  2. Data interpretation for decision making in business
  3. Data protection and risk management
  4. Data visualisation
  5. Data preparation and data cleaning
  6. Data science engineering
  7. Advanced statistical techniques
  8. Competency in advanced analytics with Python
  9. Competency in Microsoft SQL Server and SQL databases
  10. Creating and implementing machine learning algorithms

It is no wonder that the data-related skills cited above are more in demand, as among the over 700 working professionals in Singapore surveyed (which included 200 business leaders), 94% of employers and 88% of employees said a resounding 'yes' when asked if their teams leverage data more to make business decisions now as compared to a year ago.

Industry clusters such as Professional Services, Trade & Connectivity and Lifestyle top the list when it comes to experiencing increasing use of data in the workplace to drive business decisions.

Kwek Kok Kwong, CEO of NTUC LearningHub stated: "While data literacy was considered a new skill last decade and only for a select few, we want to make data literacy a basic skill for Worker 4.0 — our future workers."

Lead image / Data Skills Report 2020