According to a new report from Experian, the inability to use and analyse data effectively is crippling businesses, and improving data literacy rates among the workforce will be critical to future success. As part of the report, Experian polled 1,100 data practitioners and data-driven business leaders from around the world.The company’s findings suggest many organisations lack the necessary skills and resources to make the most of their data, despite the fact almost all (84 percent) consider data literacy a “core skill”. Data literacy is described by Experian as “the ability to read, work with, analyse, and form arguments with data”. The report claims data is one of the most valuable assets for the vast majority of businesses (85 percent), while a third see data literacy as “crucial” for future-proofing the business. To ensure data literacy improves, 30 percent have set up a formal training programs, and 36 percent plan to do so within the year. “Over the last decade, it’s clear that data has increasingly become a critical asset in helping businesses thrive, and therefore, there’s a strong desire to take advantage of the opportunities data enables in driving better customer and financial outcomes,” said Michael Kilander, Global Managing Director, Data Quality at Experian. “Unfortunately, a rising level of data debt and a data skills shortage are converging to make data insights harder to achieve,” he concluded.