Data Analytics Service Guidelines
This document aims to establish guidelines for implementing a high-quality citywide data and analytics service, led by the Office of Performance Analytics (OPA). The vision for this service is an empowered, informed, and efficient City. To accomplish this, OPA collaborates across the City to transform data and information into insightful policy, impactful investment, and effective services for all Alexandrians.
Focus on issues, questions, and needs that are a priority for the organization
The analytics service partners with the organization to determine high priority areas where stakeholders need analytics support. For specific projects, OPA closely works with stakeholders to develop research questions, scopes of work, and other approaches to identify needs and goals. This is important to clarify project objectives and select priority valuable projects.
User Needs are central
Understanding end users needs and the manner in which a product or service will support their work maximizes the impact of data and analytics. A user’s needs should be the starting point of analytics work rather than a specific solution.
Deliver objective, reliable analytics products to inform decisions
The analytics service’s role in the organization is to provide insights and recommendations to help inform the City’s decisions. OPA strives to provide analysis that is objective and rigorous, so that it can be effectively used to provide insights and information to decision makers. This is important to help the organization continuously improve and deliver efficient and effective services to Alexandria.
The analytics service strives to involve departments and multi-disciplinary teams. The objective of which is to have a holistic view of an issue and expertise on a topic. This close partnership endeavors to ensure analysis is thorough.
Data usage complies with relevant laws and procedures
OPA uses data in adherence with relevant laws and procedures. OPA partners with the Office of the City Attorney, Department of Information Technology Services, and relevant data owners to collaboratively protect data. This is important to protect sensitive and confidential data.
City of Alexandria and OPA are committed to public transparency. As such, the analytics service strives to share key indicators on important topics across the organization. Examples include the City Council’s Priorities and select priority indicators for each City department.
OPA strives to continuously improve and evolve the data analytics service to incorporate best practices and expand the organization’s capacity for analytics and data-informed decision making. This is important to ensure the analytics service effectively supports the organization’s needs and goals.