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Nesta builds job ads data platform

04/03/19

Mark Say Managing Editor

Innovation charity Nesta has developed a digital platform to provide an increased range of data to support careers advisers in the education system.

'Big data' imposed on crowd scene

It has created an early version of Making Sense of Skills to provide a publicly available taxonomy to provide a consistent way of measuring the supply and demand of skills, and help students and workers learn more about the skills that they need to develop careers.

The platform, which was initially published last August as a stage in an iterative approach, has been developed with job market analytics specialist Burning Glass Technologies as part of a research project for the Economic Statistics Centre of Excellence and funded by the Office of National Statistics.

Speaking to UKAuthority at Nesta’s education conference, data science research fellow Jyldyz Djumalieva said it is based on a dataset of 41 million job advertisements between 2012-17, and is using the data to help identify gaps of skills based on what employers have been seeking.

It is based on an increasing need for more granular data on the jobs market, and the organisation is aiming to develop it into a regularly updated version to provide something close to real time data.

Salaries and growth outlook

“We hope this could provide advice, especially on things like, if someone wants to work in a specific field, which skills are required and the outlook for salaries and growth,” she said.

“And we hope to make the taxonomy available for geographic areas and see how we can work with bodies such as local government to see how we can develop it for specific skill requirements.

“At the moment it is static based on six years of data, but in the next couple of months we might be able to update it with a new set.

“If we start to join forces with bodies such as the Department for Education and the Office of National Statistics we might be able to build this approach of using data to build improve knowledge of skills in the job market.”

Djumalieva added that the next steps could be to map regional skills shortages and measure changes in the requirements for skills, and that Nesta wants to talk to other bodies to understand how it can make the platform useful for a wide range of organisations and people.

Image from iStock, Peter Howell

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