The Value of Assessment
Assessments are a fundamental prerequisite for effective planning and management. Assessment measures capabilities, adherence to policy, progress towards goals, and maturity in data governance process and practice. Without assessment, organizations would not be able to establish a meaningful data strategy because they would lack clear, objective, comprehensive, and accurate benchmarks of current data capabilities. Assessments can distinguish between areas in which organizations are strong or meeting goals, and areas that are limiters and may need change.
While strategy acts as a department-wide pole star to identify goals, assessment identifies the amount of progress being made toward those goals. In addition, assessments serve a vital function though their objective and neutral measurement to help lead people to common understandings of inefficiencies or barriers, and support building consensus towards more optimal or improved processes. Described below are the Data Management Maturity, Skills, and Digital Transformation assessments that DOL conducted to inform strategic planning and move the Department towards more effective and optimal data management and use.
Data Management Maturity Model Assessments
Assessing capabilities and maturity in areas like data, analytics, people, technology, and organizational culture enables agencies to prioritize issues of greatest concern and evaluate where investments of limited resources can have the largest impact. To learn more about DOL’s current capabilities and maturity, and recent work being done to improve these, see information on DOL’s Data Maturity Assessment.
Improving staff data skills enables agencies to turn data into information that can inform decision making and program administration. To learn more about DOL’s efforts to assess the skills needed to effectively define, collect and manage data, current inventories of staff capabilities with those skills, and ongoing efforts to close critical skills gaps, read the results of DOL’s Skills Assessment.
DOL recently worked closely with the Partnership for Public Service to leverage their Federal Data and Digital Maturity Index. This instrument is similar to a data management maturity model assessment, but expands on the ways in which appraisals are done and allows agencies to identify both a current level of maturity and a desired level of maturity. This assessment covers 29 baseline dimensions with a focused view on people as a resource and our ability to execute in an environment that is becoming increasingly technical and data-dependent. You can see the results of the Labor Department Assessment Here.