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Data and analytics skills

Summary of the changes and additions for SFIA 9 for data and the professional skills related to data

Summary of the changes and additions for SFIA 9.

SFIA skill - name
SFIA skill - description
Value and impact of this skill
Changes for SFIA 9
Data management DATM Developing and implementing plans, policies, and practices that control, protect and optimise the value and governance of data assets. Ensures data is treated as a valuable asset, maximizing its usefulness while minimising risks. Enables better decision-making, regulatory compliance, and data-driven operations.

More emphasis on data governance.
Levels 2 and 3 added for entry-level data management roles.

Readability changes.

Data modelling and design DTAN Developing models and diagrams to represent and communicate data requirements and data assets. Creates a shared understanding of data across the organisation. Improves data quality, reduces redundancy, and enables more efficient use of data assets. Minor readability changes. Reference industry reference data standards such as those used in healthcare .
Database design DBDS Specifying, designing and maintaining mechanisms for storing and accessing data. Optimizes data storage and retrieval, improving application performance and scalability. Enables efficient data management as business needs evolve. Levels 2 and 3 added for entry-level data management roles.
Guidance notes updated.
Data engineering DENG Designing, building, operationalising, securing and monitoring data pipelines and data stores. Enables timely and reliable data flow throughout the organisation. Supports advanced analytics and AI/ML initiatives by providing high-quality data pipelines. This skill was introduced in SFIA 8. Feedback on use has been positive. Very small  changes for readability.
Database administration DBAD Installing, configuring, monitoring, maintaining databases and data stores, ensuring performance and security while adapting to evolving technologies. Ensures critical business data is available, performant, and secure. Minimises downtime and data loss risks while adapting to new technologies. Large changes to levels align with other operational skills and cloud-based working.
Data analytics DAAN Enabling data-driven decision making by extracting, analysing and communicating insights from structured and unstructured data. Transforms raw data into actionable insights to drive business strategy, improve operations, and identify new opportunities. Enables data-driven culture across all levels of the organisation. Additional skill for SFIA 9.  It provides a umbrella skill for analytics, data science and  business intelligence. Includes strategic leadership levels which were previously under Data science.
Data science DATS Applying mathematics, statistics, data mining and predictive modelling techniques to gain insights, predict behaviours and generate value from data. Uncovers hidden patterns and insights in data to drive innovation, improve products/services, and optimize business processes. Enables predictive capabilities for better decision-making. This skill was introduced in SFIA 8. Feedback on use has been positive. Level 6 edited and level 7 moved to Data science.
Machine learning MLNG Developing systems that learn from data and experience, with the capability to improve performance over time. Automates complex tasks and decision-making processes. Enables personalised experiences, predictive maintenance, and other AI-driven capabilities that can provide competitive advantages.

This skill was introduced in SFIA 8. Feedback on use has been positive. Updates for SFIA 9 made to reflect increase use of this skill.
May need to be split between model development and model operation although the operation of MLOps needs more than just a single skill.

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Business intelligence BINT Developing, producing and delivering regular and one-off management information to provide insights and aid decision-making. Provides timely, accurate information to support strategic and operational decision-making. Improves organisational performance through data-driven insights. This skill was introduced in SFIA 8. Feedback on use has been positive.
Data visualisation VISL Facilitating understanding of data by displaying concepts, ideas, and facts using graphical representations. Makes complex data easily understandable for faster, more informed decision-making. Improves communication of key metrics and trends across the organisation.

References to developing narratives and storytelling around data have been added.

Level 2 added for entry-level roles.