If the internet revolution helped businesses conquer new heights in the past few decades, data analytics is helping them make smarter and efficient choices. Big data analytics has been successfully driving product innovations and sales in all major corporations.
But with a bit of experimentation, industry experts have also uncovered how analytics can be used in Human Resources to help brands push the envelope and become more attractive. We’ve compiled a list of 10 ways this can happen:
At a single glance, it is easy to mistake HR analytics to be a component that is best left to the folks at Human Resources to deal with. But think about it – wouldn’t combining other business data with HR analytics actually yield new insights? Not only would such an approach benefit the HR department, but would also open up new options for the entire organization as a whole.
Large enterprises are in a race to find the top talent and retain them. It’s not uncommon for companies like Facebook, Google, Apple and Microsoft to acquire whole companies just because they have a strong and a talented team. HR analytics is a relatively new field that has gained popularity because of the access to more sophisticated software, big data and processing systems. Insights from these systems help much smaller companies to compete with large enterprises in the war for top talent. On a related note, read our similar article on how enterprise analytics generates ROI.
The adoption of analytics will slowly consolidate and automate all HR systems. This means that these tools can be accessed from virtually everywhere – even from home. Such flexibility not only makes lives easier for the HR department and its employees but also improves their efficiency. How often have we regretted not making a backup of office data for access at home? That should be in the past. Cloud based software applications such as “SuccessFactors” from SAP and Workday makes this process easier. These are high-end applications specially build for large scale enterprises to onboard, track and manage their employees. These applications allow users to create department level access controls and give more authority to their department leaders to make HR decisions based on data. By doing so, it eliminates long waiting queues and decision delays – making both the Managers and Employees happier.
We’ve all come across this before – employees always need to contact different people or access different intranet locations to get certain services up and running. HR analytics enables an organization to create a one-stop solution that processes information and enables these employees to receive relevant data. This self-service approach can save a lot for time for everyone. In addition, these systems provide data which can be used to optimize HR processes. Employee self-service is a large area of automation many HR systems focus on. Simple questions such as “how many leaves do I have left?”, “when does my probation end?” might seem simple questions; but if you’re heading an HR department of an enterprise, it makes sense to make that information available to Employees directly and let the Employees make the decisions based on that data.
There’s no doubt that the upper management (executives and managers) constantly needs to keep in touch with multiple departments to ensure the organization runs smoothly. These tasks are also traditionally shared by HR. With analytics, managers can monitor the attitude and performance of their workforce in real time. This is critical when you’re working on a competitive work culture. Competent Employees will be tolerant for small issues, but if those issues are not raised to upper Management, those Employees will get frustrated and will start to leave the organization. Before competent Employees start leaving the organization, the Upper Management must be able to use metrics provided by People Analytics systems to identify any issues with the Employees and resolve them.
As stated by Intel’s former CEO Andy Grove, 1-on-1 evaluations is one of the most important actions that must be done by a Manager. Advanced HR analytics and scheduling systems are able to schedule this automatically, so all employees can get periodic undivided attention from the Management.
In a world where technology is advancing exponentially, employees need to constantly update themselves and learn new skills. Programs that are designed to improve learning can help tackle this problem and identify what each employee needs to learn. What’s more? It’s also possible to determine the best ways respective employees can go about learning those skills. From a branding perspective, this is also very valuable. A lack of development opportunities is one of the key reasons why younger employees are leaving their jobs.
Big data grows in volume, variety, and velocity. You got structured as well as unstructured data. When you have to deal with such large amounts of data, there’s no other smarter way to deal with this situation than to rely on machine learning. Software technology that analyses employee information can be used to create teams and assign roles for better efficiency within the organization.
With HR analytics, you no longer need third party organizations to visit your offices to measure the happiness index. Things are much simpler and effective with analytics software, as you can monitor performance and job satisfaction at all times. Moreover, it’s a well-known fact that periodic assessment isn’t a great way of measuring job satisfaction. It has to be monitored each and every day. For example, Goldman Sachs recently introduced a real-time employee performance review management system called Feedback360+. This breaks the tradition of annual or bi-annual performance reviews which has been a tradition for many years in the corporate world.
When your employees proudly identify themselves with your brand and organization, that’s when you know that they are putting in their best efforts. However, monitoring this sense of belonging was always a complex task until analytics came along. Integrating analytics and data mining tools to HR enables managers to measure this parameter effectively. Most companies are now realizing the importance of culture and its effects on Employee performance. A strong work culture that not bound by bureaucracy and politics significantly improves output and reduces employee turnover.
HR tracking tools such as Culture Amp and Glint focuses on this specific area of People Analytics, and we estimate the investment in this sector will grow in the future.
The biggest benefit of integrating analytics to HR (or other departments in the future) is that it has the uncanny ability to automate tasks and thereby reduce the employee strength. Smaller teams make the best teams. Also, existing employees can choose to concentrate on other tasks that have a higher priority.
However, the good news for HR departments and CEOs is the cost of tracking and automation is falling to a point which makes it easier for up and coming organizations to deploy People Analytics solutions with a much tighter budget. This happens because of the increased interest from Venture Capital firms in this space and because of the rapid advancements in Machine Learning and automation systems. Now it’s not uncommon for small companies that focus on HR systems and tools to receive Series A funding beyond $5 million to deploy more affordable and automated HR systems.
It’s possible to measure and predict workforce requirements and prevent risks in human resources with the help of analytics. It’s also possible to devise contingency plans. This is like a personal time machine that enables managers to fiddle around with all possible scenarios. Got a big project coming up? All it takes is a few inputs to simulate how well it could be handled with the existing workforce. Based on that performance, hiring managers can decide to look for prospective employees.
One of the key factors that the CEOs should be focusing on is the use of HR analytics to attract the best talent and to retain their existing top talent. With the increased research and investment in the automation and Artificial Intelligence technologies, we will be seeing lower level jobs becoming redundant. We’re already seeing the signs of increasing skill shortages in the horizon. Therefore as a step in reducing business risk, it will be essential the HR Analytics data is used to find, keep and train the Employees to ensure the long term success of a company.
To implement HR analytics in your organization, select a suitable business intelligence tools for small and big business that enables you to get actionable insights from your HR data.
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