The ability of an individual to comprehend, interpret, communicate, and act on data, enabling people to collaborate around data and make better decisions.
Data literacy is a starting point: it’s the fundamental knowledge and skills that every person who interacts with data needs to have. Data literacy includes numeracy, basic statistical knowledge, and basic business knowledge as well as the ability to interpret data, assess its validity, and use business intelligence (BI) tools at a basic level. It also involves knowing what steps to take in response to data and a curiosity to dig deeper in the data when necessary.
Data literacy is the ability to understand, find meaning, interpret, and communicate using data. Just as language literacy is the set of knowledge and skills to communicate and inform with words, data literacy encompasses a similar set of knowledge and skills to communicate and inform with data. Data literacy is both an individual and an organizational skill set. A data literate individual has the ability to understand, interpret, and apply data to fulfill communication responsibilities of their specific job role. A data literate organization has the ability to communicate, collaborate, and innovate using data.
Data literacy ensures that business people have the skills to accurately interpret data represented in charts, tables, and dashboards, as well as the knowledge to use those tools to gather and analyze data on their own.