Less than half of UK graduates believe data analytics skills essential to their future

UK graduates are greatly underestimating the importance of data analytics skills required in today’s workplace.

New research from Tableau Software reveals that just 40 per cent of recent graduates believe data analytics skills are essential for their future job and only 30 per cent believe data analytics to be critical in fulfilling their career goals.

This is in sharp contrast to a recent study from LinkedIn that ranked “statistical analysis and data mining” the number one skill to get you hired in the UK.

The survey polled 1,000 recent graduates from across the UK about their level of data analytics skills and its place in their future professional development.

With more than 75 per cent of companies planning to invest in big data through 2017, the results reveal a concerning disparity between today’s business requirements for data analytics skills and a lack of understanding of the value of data analysis from graduates.

James Eiloart, VP EMEA at Tableau said: “What is startling from the research is the clear disparity between the need for data analysis skills and the awareness about its importance.

“Students must realise what is clearly apparent to employers: our technology-driven world means that the jobs graduates seek in just a few years’ time will be fundamentally different to those they are now training for.”

Despite the relative lack of importance UK graduates place on data analytics, results show that almost 80 percent have heard of data analytics and just 19 percent say that data skills are “just for tech geeks,” showing that graduates understand that the role of data analytics is no longer confined to IT and tech sectors.

Paul Chapman, Business Intelligence CoE Manager at easyJet and Tableau user said: “Today’s workplace is one where data analytics skills are no longer a nice to have, but a must.

“The sheer amount of data available today means that the ability to quickly draw valuable insights is absolutely critical for business success. It is certainly a skill that will present a key advantage to recent graduates over their peers.”