Data’s Evolution in the Cloud: Data Forges the Way Forward in Education

This article was written by Snowflake and originally appeared on the Snowflake Blog here:


Lack of technical capacity is the biggest challenge to the education sector’s ability to collect data, according to a recent survey conducted by The Economist Intelligence Unit and sponsored by Snowflake. Challenges such as data privacy regulations (41%), lack of accurate data (32%), barriers to data sharing among departments (25%), and lack of internal talent to build technical capacity (24%) [were cited by respondents as preventing] the sector from effectively drawing insights from data.

These are some of the findings from the survey, which queried 914 global executives across eight industries, including 111 from the education sector. The survey results reveal how this sector’s leaders are adapting their data strategies, engaging with the broader data ecosystem, and converting data insights into growth and better performance.

Data silos exist on many levels—among school departments, educational institutions, and outside parties such as governmental funding agencies—because many entities in the sector struggle with outdated legacy systems. As a result, education sector respondents rank highest among industries citing high costs as their biggest challenge with regard to sourcing or sharing data with external parties–by 36% versus a total survey average of 26%.

But education sector leaders believe access to data-driven insights opens opportunities for strategic growth. They believe the biggest opportunity is increasing student satisfaction and improving the student experience.

Innovation in products and services is one of the top three priorities that will be most critical to their organization’s success over the next three years, according to education sector respondents (in addition to digital transformation and revenue growth). Education leaders believe a digital transformation will be important to help them innovate and succeed in the future.