We often cover the impact of data analytics on job roles and functions here on the APEX of Innovation, including how new technologies are transforming employee training and future job skills and the pros and cons of using algorithms to manage people.

Data-driven changes have impacted virtually every area within organizations, making the role of the citizen data scientist increasingly appealing to business leaders. A citizen data scientist, as defined by Gartner, is, “A person who creates or generates models that use advanced diagnostic analytics or predictive and prescriptive capabilities, but whose primary job function is outside the field of statistics and analytics.” 

According to a related blog post by Carlie Idoine, Research Director for Business Analytics and Data Science for Gartner for IT Leaders, the rise of citizen data scientists is happening for two reasons. First, they’re proving to be a strong—and cost-effective—complement to expert data scientists, who are typically more difficult to find and more expensive to hire. Second, data science is getting easier. According to the Gartner post, the use of new analytics and business intelligence tools are extending further into the enterprise. Additionally, solutions like augmented analytics and machine learning-powered tools are helping employees accomplish data discovery and analytics tasks that once were reserved for expert data scientists only.

Are you unleashing the power of citizen data scientists?

Whether they’re already at work at your company or you’re just getting started mainstreaming data analytics practices to a broader range of employees, here are some tips for empowering citizen data scientists at your company:

1. Support a data-driven culture: In addition to factoring in people, processes, and technology when empowering citizen data scientists, it’s also important to ensure a data-driven culture across the company. This will help open up the role of citizen data scientists to more people and increase their acceptance and ability to bring about change among employees.

2. Keep an open-door policy: Especially during the early stages of digital transformation, citizen data scientists need executive support and a place to go when help is needed. Consider your citizen data scientists as change agents that need to win over employees from across your company. They can’t go it alone.

3. Provide the right tools and training: Opening up the business benefits of data analytics requires opening the technology up to more people. Today’s analytics and business intelligence tools are enabling companies to make huge leaps forward in less time. Combined with the right ongoing training, companies can significantly accelerate their data strategies and scale the value of data analytics across the business.

To learn more on how to tap into the power of citizen data scientists, check out this eBook from TIBCO.