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BrainStation Report Underscores Importance of Digital Skills for Transformation

Digital skills are incredibly important to how modern companies function and grow—but just how much do fields like data science, experience design, product management, and others really impact a business?

BrainStation is in a good spot to understand that question and their newly released 2019 Digital Skills Survey offers insights into the digital trends that really matter as well as what the day-to-day experience of professionals in a technology-enabled world is like. The survey asked thousands of professionals across six disciplines and job functions (data, design, development, product management, marketing, and executive) about digital shifts within their industries.

The results go into detail for all of the six represented industries, creating high-level findings that show almost three-quarters of companies are involved in some form of digital transformation. Beyond that, half of responding executives say they will be doing the most hiring in development, and close to four of five data professionals did not start their career in data. Many of the findings highlight the extent that workers are switching careers to match the evolving industries springing up around them.

“The findings point to a dramatic shift, across industries, which really highlights the digital transformation initiatives companies are undertaking around the world,” said Jason Field, founder and CEO of BrainStation. “They also underscore the growth of fields like data science, user experience design, and product management, as well as the gap in skills needed to meet that demand.”

Some of the most interesting results come from the executive portion of the survey. The report found that companies most often invested in content marketing, social media, SEO, and email when it came to digital marketing. Beyond that, companies most often used data to optimize and develop their organization, and the key areas for executives to invest in for 2019 were AI, machine learning, and e-commerce.

digital skills

The areas executives want to invest in for 2019.

“The speed at which entire industries are evolving with the power of digital means that you have to be aware of digital trends and shifts, or risk being left behind,” says Field. “Knowing things like which programming languages are most widely used, or how many organizations are working on digital transformation initiatives, or what discipline executives are most intent to hire for, really highlight the need for proactive strategies, and can help hiring managers and talent alike plan ahead for the future.”

As the survey gets deeper into each of the represented fields, a few trends begin to emerge. Employees in data for instance mostly use Excel and SQL, but as they become more specialized—progressing, for example, to a data scientist role—they begin to use Python more than other tools.

digital skills

Key takeaways from BrainStation’s digital skills survey.

When it comes to marketing, the survey found that most widely-used CMS system is WordPress, Google Analytics rules the analytics platform world, and Salesforce is the most-used CRM platform.

“The Digital Skills Survey is an extremely valuable tool for any company, new or old, large or small, to define or refine their strategies moving forward. The survey offers a closer look at the most commonly used digital platforms, channels, tools, and objectives,” says Field. “It’s also invaluable from an employee training point of view, as it highlights the growing demand for data science, development, product management, marketing, and UX design.”

BrainStation is a digital skills training organization, offering diploma programs and certificate courses at campuses in New York CityToronto, Chicago, Vancouver, and Boston, as well as online, through a proprietary online learning platform. They recently launched Canada’s first data science bootcamp, and with this survey are looking to understand which skills are most in demand when it comes to digital transformation.

Check out the full results of the 2019 Digital Skills Survey here.

Note: BrainStation is a sister company of Techvibes.

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