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Analytics in HR: A Game Changer for Workplace Performance


Kanupriya Manchanda

November 15, 2023

Analytics in HR is changing the way we work and manage talent. Also known as people analytics, it refers to the use of data and statistical analysis to make informed decisions about an organization’s workforce.

Being transformative in nature, it works on the principle that ‘what you can’t measure, you can’t improve’.

More on HR analytics:

HR is all about people and their skills. There’s nothing more valuable on the balance sheet than the skills within the organization. HR analytics play a crucial role in helping identify and nurture talent. But what’s truly valuable about analytics is that it enables us to not just look back but also to look forward. We can make decisions based on past and current trends and predict our future workforce needs.

Steps to get into HR analytics:

When venturing into HR analytics, it’s crucial to define your goals. Start by asking yourself what specific goals you want to achieve. For instance, are you aiming to boost productivity, enhance retention, or improve time to hire?

Once you’ve established your goals, the next step is to identify the areas you want to focus on and the key metrics that will help you gauge progress. For instance, you might want to track metrics like time-to-fill for job openings or the conversion rate from offer to joiner. 

The most significant challenge with data is not just collecting it but also interpreting and synthesizing it into actionable information. Decide what information is crucial and how it should be organized. Remember, this isn’t a one-time effort. 

It’s an iterative process. Investing in technology, even with limited budgets, is essential. Even a tool as simple as Google Sheets or a free Power BI dashboard can be a powerful starting point. Excel, too, is a robust tool that shouldn’t be underestimated. It provides a solid foundation for data analysis and management.

Towards a data-driven mindset

As business leaders who value their people and as HR professionals who appreciate the human element, embracing a data-driven mindset is crucial. 

When it comes to fostering a data-driven culture, the foundation rests on a fundamental mindset shift—a shift toward embracing data. Leadership plays a pivotal role. If you want to instill a particular behavior, you must begin by rewarding and recognizing it at the leadership level.

The second crucial step is training and coaching your team on how to effectively use data. It’s important not to assume that providing them with a spreadsheet full of pivots and dashboards is sufficient. Interpretation and utilization require guidance and education.

The third key aspect involves cross-functional collaboration. While each department may have its own data, the real value emerges when you connect the dots. 

For instance, linking a new hire to their skill set, the project they’re assigned to, their deployability, efficiency, and competency enrichment This holistic approach necessitates gathering data from HR, Delivery, Resource Management Group (RMG), and Finance. Collaborating across functions amplifies the value of data and insights.

The evolving role of HR analytics

When we think about the future, it’s crucial to recognize that data is fast becoming our DNA. Look around—almost everyone’s got a fitness band, keeping tabs on their steps and what they’re eating. That’s like a little glimpse of how things are changing, and you can see the same shift happening in organizations too. 

Rather than exclusively relying on prescriptive analysis, the emphasis is shifting toward predictive analysis. HR is less interested in just knowing the source of hires and wants to project the future. AI and analytics together are powering this predictive capability, enabling us to make informed decisions about the future.

The true power of analytics emerges when it’s applied consistently over time, allowing us to leverage accumulated data for deeper insights. This long-term perspective is where the real value lies. These insights become the cornerstone for strategic decision-making, shaping the future of our organization.

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