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IDA partners Google to produce more data analysts

Called the Squared Data & Analytics Program, the latest tie-up between Google and IDA will see 25 fresh graduates or early career professionals undergo intensive training in data analytics.

SINGAPORE: On the back of growing demand for tech professionals in Singapore, the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) is partnering industry giant Google to produce more data analysts.

Google has helped IDA train data analysts in the past, and IDA is hoping more industry players will help train the next generation.

Called the Squared Data & Analytics Program, the latest tie-up between Google and IDA will see 25 fresh graduates or early career professionals undergo intensive training in data analytics.

The programme was first launched in 2014 and the latest course is the third.

This eight-month programme will combine classes with on-the-job training, giving trainees real-world work experience.

A graduate from an earlier programme said an internship with a bank sparked his interest in this emerging field.

Mr Khairul Anwar Abdul Aziz, a data analyst at Sparkline, said: "If you want to enter the data field, there is no specific programme out there that can get you there.

“And Squared has helped me get there, because of its unique programme; there are eight to 10 weeks of learning at Google, and eight to 10 months of real-world experience outside. So, this unique blend really prepared us for a career in this field."

According to Minister for Trade and Industry (Industry) S Iswaran, Singapore needs another 2,500 data analysts between now and 2020.

In addition, as data analytics is relatively new, IDA hopes more companies can come forward to help train professionals in this area, by offering internships and structured on-the-job training.

IDA's Assistant Chief Executive (Development), Khoong Hock Yun, said: "What is important for us is for the industry to come along with us, as the Government, with our funding, support, rally people and work together to create more technical specialists because the industry is crying out.

“We want to be more competitive, but we need the manpower. So, for many students out there who are looking for new jobs, there are a lot of specialist roles."

IDA said businesses that use data analytics are better at deploying resources, helping them navigate the slowing global economy.