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Learning to make the best use of your data


How a data strategy and positive data culture can help grantmakers get the most out of their data.

As the needs of society continue to outweigh the available grants, it is more important now than ever before that funding be distributed strategically. Grantmakers are increasingly thinking about how they can use data to maximise their impact, and help make their grantmaking more informed, effective and strategic – but this is easier said than done.

Grantmakers need to have the skills, confidence and knowledge to maximise the power of their data. Recognising these needs our strategy sets out how we are working towards creating a fundamental transformation in funder data culture and practice. Over the past 18 months we have expanded our training and development support, and through our data skills workshops like Data in a Day we’re supporting more people to practically use, understand and interpret data.

But data culture and strategy are just as important as practical skills, especially for organisations and wider networks. Our relaunched Data Champions programme aims to provide the best practice behaviours, awareness and tools to get the most of data and ensure its use aligns with organisational objectives. Through eight sessions, participants will learn how to improve their approach to data and its impact by developing a data strategy and building a positive data culture in their organisations.

What is Data Culture and Data Strategy?

An organisation’s data culture is reflected in the values, behaviours and expectations that are shared within that organisation regarding data collection, analysis and use.

An organisation’s data strategy is an approach and plan that sets out how the management and use of data will further the organisation’s strategic goals and efficiently utilise its resources. Every data strategy is different, and must be built around the needs of the organisation, their staff, key stakeholders and what they want to achieve with their data.

Both culture and strategy are critical to developing an organisational culture in which the use of data and evidence supports strategic priorities, and where staff are able to grow in confidence and ability using that data to inform their work.

That’s why our Data Champions programme will introduce participants to the latest thinking and approaches, with sessions bringing together core learning in culture change theories and methods alongside strategic data use. Learning alongside other grantmakers, participants can also make connections that provide an ongoing source of peer support and learning.

In our past two cohorts of Data Champions, an average of 90% reported greater knowledge of how to grow a data culture in their organisation, and 78% a change in workplans or practices as a result of their participation.

A circular workflow of data, with virtual post-it notes around it referring to different stages of the process.

Ready to get started?

If you work in a grantmaking organisation and want to be a part of improving data use, then you – or that colleague you know who’s always talking about getting more out of your data! – could be the Data Champion you and your organisation needs. Check out our online data skills workshops, in-person Data in a Day training, or sign up for Data Champions 2023-24 by 6th September, ahead of the first session on 21st September.

If you have any questions about any of our training then do get in touch at