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U.S. Department of Labor Announces Inaugural Enterprise Data Strategy

Deputy Secretary of Labor Su calls collected data one of the department’s superpowers.

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The U.S. Department of Labor has released its inaugural Enterprise Data Strategy, a three-year plan by the department’s Office of the Assistant Secretary for Policy that will guide department efforts to improve its collection, management, and use of data, and enhance its ability to share data to advance opportunity and equity for the nation’s workers. 

Deputy Secretary of Labor Julie A. Su announced the plan at the June 15 “Putting Data to Work on behalf of America’s Workers” event at the Brookings Institution in Washington.

“Without strong data, we cannot take wise action,” said Su. “The U.S. Department of Labor’s data is powerful because of what we can do with it. Even more importantly, the data is powerful because of what others can do with it. When cutting-edge data is put in the hands of advocates, unions, employers, researchers, workers, and others, the nation’s economy benefits.”

The Enterprise Data Strategy includes four guiding principles and five goals that together can help the department develop more consistent and effective data governance and align agency planning to improve data management. The four guiding principles seek to make data findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable -- also known as the FAIR principles.

The strategy’s five strategic goals are ensuring data is:

  • managed to be open by default
  • comprehensible
  • fit for purpose
  • available in consistent and predictable ways
  • managed as an enterprise asset that incorporates stakeholder input, and as appropriate, made public in ways that provide real benefit to data users

The Enterprise Data Strategy describes initial areas of focus and strategic goals to advance organizational and cultural change, strengthen governance, increase data talent, improve data documentation, modernize data infrastructure, integrate data management into existing systems, and expand data use to inform program administration.

In addition, the department today published its first Open Data Request for Information in the Federal Register to solicit comments, feedback, and suggestions from the public for targeted improvements on data quality, availability and modes of access.

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