NatWest is looking to train up its staff for the data revolution by pumping £1 million into an academy open to all of its 70,000 employees.
The bank is aiming to train 1000 employees on how to better understand and harness data in its first year, with the senior executive team, including CEO Ross McEwan, all enrolling.
Data is now considered the "fuel for innovation," says NatWest, making it central to the bank's digital transformation and the quest to take advantage of new technologies such as AI and machine learning.
The data academy will offer a range of training, courses and qualifications, with participants gaining experience points and badges to chart their progress, with more advanced units professionally accredited.
Specific courses will cover data fundamentals, data science, data architecture and data engineering, decision science and data governance and ethics as well as performance insight.
Frank Meere, director, data, NatWest, says: "This is another important step towards building a bank that gives our staff the tools to innovate and create services and products that our customers really value."
NatWest says that its academy is a UK first, but banks around the world are looking to make their staff more data literate. ING is setting up a similar analytics academy while JPMorgan has introduced mandatory coding courses for all employees in its asset management division.