Case studies

Our collaboration projects between the public sector, industry and academia bring a real impact to Scotland.

Vicky Dewar

Vicky Dewar Data Champion Profile

Vicky Dewar is the Co-Founder of The Spirits Spyder, an intuitive pricing platform for the global Whisky market

She is a Chartered Accountant by trade, but has recently discover that data is her true calling. Vicky currently works as a Data Analyst for The Spirits Spyder, which she juggles alongside her other role as Finance Delivery Manager within the Finance Transformation team in SSE. Her 13 years of experience within the Whisky industry has allowed her to add context to the huge amount of the data that is out there.

“Everyone who knows me knows I am a real data geek and even have the T shirt to prove it.” – Vicky Dewar

Vicky’s journey with data

Following a number of business discovery sessions with TDL’s TORCH team, Vicky expressed a great interest in understanding the data technology and methods behind their project, telling us,

“We didn’t want someone to bake us a cake, we wanted somebody to help us buy the ingredients and then let us see how it’s baked”

TORCH supplier introductions meant that Vicky was able to work (and learn) closely from Alan Wood at Revelator IT, who explained that it was important for clients to feel empowered and learn about what had been built for them. The Spirits Spyder had also taken advantage of The Data Lab’s MSc programme and student, Spyros Anastasiou, supported Vicky as she grew her data technology knowledge.

Having built a wonderful relationship with our team, she was signposted to the Women in Data Science Course, funded by TDL and organised by Equate and Code Clan. In 2021, Vicky joined the programme and was able to apply her learnings to her work with The Spirits Spyder’s 2nd MSc placement. They now have a 3rd MSc student ready to begin work with them in summer 2022.

Having been bitten by the data bug, she is now in regular contact with TDL team, and in Spring 2022, will begin an Introduction to Data Science with Python programme with Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen.

Data learns from Vicky Dewar

  • The importance of good quality data in any industry is pivotal to the decision making process.
  • Don’t underestimate the value of learning by trying things out for yourself.

We asked Vicky about her thoughts around current and future demand for data skills, alongside her thinking around the potential for upskilling and retraining to address data skills gaps in the workforce

The role of an accountant within a business is changing quickly. They are becoming more data focused in order to provide good, clear data in a useful format (to allow data driven decisions to be made). This will leave a skills gap (that many larger companies are now identifying) as more and more go through the digital transformation programs.

Current teams will need to be upskilled in both data and IT skills, along with the need for increased automation, to allow the companies to use data and potentially data science in the future.

Other Links

Case Study: The Spirits Spyder | An intuitive platform for the Global Whisky Market
Connect: Follow Vicky on LinkedIn

More Data Champion profiles

If you liked this profile, you might also like our other Data Champion bios with Nicola Curran, Head of Commercial Revenue at ScotRail, and Pete Duncan, Business Analyst for Edinburgh First at The University of Edinburgh.