The digital era is upon us. Companies around the globe are already online or moving online. Digital marketing has grown substantially over the years and becoming a priority in many companies. Social media and mobile platforms are becoming pivotal to brands eager to reach customers. All this has created for an explosion of data. Useful data. But data on its own is just numbers – you need analysis to unlock its secrets and put it to work. And that’s where the problem starts. Where on earth are all the digital analysts?
Skilled data analysts are needed now more than ever to analyse data and make sense of the findings to help justify, improve and optimize marketing efforts and customer engagement.
The lack of digital talent is not just a problem here in Australia but around the globe as well. As the demand for digital increases, it seems likely there will be a talent vacuum for a few years yet to come.
Analytical talent requires practitioners to possess a whole variety of skills, as Damon Scarr, Commercial Director of Yahoo!7 says. “Today you can’t just be a data analyst; you need to be a sociologist, an anthropologist, a strategist and a developer – a veritable digital jack of all trades.”
There are several suggestions companies can follow to help bridge the talent gap. Here are a few:
1) Invest in the education path for digital talent. This can be done by working together with universities to promote digital courses, internships and help popularise the trade. Think of ways of making it ‘cool’ to young graduates, show them the potential of having such an in-demand talent and let them know that the digital sector is the place to be at the moment!
2) Take the time and effort to train and up-skill your current team. Instead of waiting around for new digital analysts, invest in your current employees. Get your traditional marketing experts trained so they embrace the digital world.
3) Given the lack of talent at the moment, ensure that you offer the right work environment and culture to make your company a highly desirable workplace. This means investing in the most sophisticated technology and tools, and developing a culture where digital analysis is central and highly valued to marketing and the business.
4) Hire and train specialists. Being an expert in every element of digital analysis is almost impossible. The role requires constant training and updating on all the latest technologies and methods. Companies can avoid overwhelming their digital analytics team and optimize their efforts by investing in specialized analysts – such an implementation specialist/engineer who solely manages the implementation of web analytics tools and maintains ongoing implementation changes to capture data. For more information on the sort of specialized roles analysts perform, click here.
As companies are starting to embrace digital media and marketing more and more, the demand for digital analysts skyrockets. What else can we do to bridge the gap? What other suggestions do you have that companies can do to increase the talent pool for digital analysts?