Using data to impact positive change

It comes as little surprise to me that Google is now worth 1 trillion dollars. Let’s think about some of the amazing innovations which have been born from data and how they’ve moved us forward as a society. At the top of the list for me is Google itself. The company crawls the entire internet, cataloguing all of the information it finds and presents relevant information in under a second with one simple button – Search.

The next front of mind innovation is GPS navigation. We used to rely on a printed map to navigate our way through the city streets. However, with data, we now have optimised routes based on traffic analytics, congestion and historical information about the travel times we can expect. It is amazing isn’t it, with just these two simple innovations you can see how profound their impact has been by making use of data.

We often forget how things were before we had these brilliant solutions to everyday challenges, but why? I think it is quite simple, the old solution is redundant, and unless it has any further use, we discard that information making way for newer and more relevant thinking. This is the progression we make as a collective, and the adoption of these solutions across our world is our digital evolution. The more problems we solve, the greater our velocity towards our potential.

What happens when we analyse ourselves through data though? I recently purchased a SmartWatch to track my health statistics and sleep. The data I’m collecting has informed me of several areas I can work on to improve my overall health. It’s fantastic to have a visual on the status of these various elements, so I can make informed decisions and monitor my progress towards the goals. There are many use cases for using data to improve our position or status, but what if we used data to inform our careers?

When the journey of developing My Careers began, it was a simple goal. Help students make more informed decisions towards a rewarding future. As we delved deeper into what this meant, it became clear that providing a level of self-awareness to students was the key. Imagine seeing yourself in a new way, aligning yourself to a career pathway which makes sense based on data and tracking yourself towards that goal. Amazing right! Given that work makes up such a massive part of our lives, isn’t it fair to think that we should manage our pathways like we manage our health?

Education is one sector which is yet to fully embrace the power of data analytics, and we are trying to solve that. Reducing the friction between students and their career pathways is just the beginning. Helping Australian schools design a more agile education system, now that is an impact we would like to make.

Data can be used in many ways but what is most exciting is when it is used to drive a positive change in our society. I cannot wait to see the impact we make in 2020, the opportunities to improve the educational outcomes for students are abundant and drive everything we do here, each and every day.