HR Strategy

Why you should be running a data-driven HR department

data-driven HR

There was a time when the notion of a data-driven HR department was the stuff of science fiction - something a Vulcan colony might use to man their starships in a bid to keep emotion out of the on-boarding process so their green-tinged, pointy-eared fleets could maintain order throughout the galaxy. In real life, however, most HR professionals can attest to the fact that they have been flying by the seat of their pants rather than according to a expertly-tailored flight plan. Up until now that is.

Cue drum roll please... the Age of Big Data.

If Vulcans were real, Commander Spock would be utterly stoked to be manning a star-fleet from planet Earth right now. Why? Because technology has finally put us in a position to manage our employees efficiently by leveraging the use of data in order to provide them with happier, healthier work situations and simultaneously building a truly epic company culture. This is everything poor half-human-half-Vulcan Spock could ever have dreamed of in an HR department. It’s logical and people-centric all at once. Can we get a hell yeah?

If you’re wondering how you can implement data-driven HR at your place of business to boost performance management and improve employee productivity, we recommend taking a page out of the playbook of the greats. A Bersin by Deloitte study has indicated that companies using sophisticated people analytics see a 30% higher stock market returns than the Standard & Poor 500 index. That's some serious stats. Here's a look at how these trail-blazers are using big data.

How innovative global companies are using data-drive HR in 2019:


1. Using talent analytics when they hire & recruit

The reach of social media platforms has increased the global talent pool exponentially, and continues to do so every day. In fact, we're now at the point where there is no earthly way for a single person to sit down and assess the seemingly unending pool of recruits to suss out those individuals who will ultimately turn out to be good, long-term hires.

However, when you provide your data-driven HR department with the ability to combine big data with deep-learning algorithms they can jump in the deep end and hone in on those stellar candidates who are likely to bring fresh innovation and drive to your workforce. When used correctly, these algorithms will pinpoint top performers, allow you to tailor offers that will entice them to join your team, and provide you with the input you need to give them the tools and resources that will shape them into unmissable members of your team.

2. Boosting employee retention with predictive analytics

There is nothing that pulls the rug from under an HR director quite like a star employee walking into their office to announce their imminent departure without even a hint of being unhappy or looking for greener pastures prior to that ominous knock on the door. It's the kind of thing that dedicated HR professionals have sweaty nightmares about - especially the type of HR aficionado who likes to keep their finger on the pulse of their highly-prized flock.

Fortunately, predictive analytics can now be used to determine which employees are a risk for jumping ship by keeping tabs on certain key indicators. When a red flag pops up, HR can then immediately step in to address these risk factors, e.g. reduce overtime, offer stock options, etc.

3. Planning their workforce with the aid of data-driven HR principles

Does your HR department know when you might have to deal with a mass retirement situation in future? Or whether the shifting economy will require that you bolster or trim a certain faction of your workforce to ensure that your company will survive the inevitable ebb and flow of supply and demand in your industry? How about the introduction of robotics or AI to bolster your ROI in coming years? Should you or shouldn’t you?

At a time when countries around the world face severe skills shortages in every industry, from nursing, to tech security and transport and beyond, these are the kinds of things a data-driven HR department should provide the answers to. Workforce planning is no longer a matter of budget VS head count, it's a matter of predicting who might leave, when they are likely to leave and how this will affect your productivity on a whole.

These are only a few ways in which your business can adopt data-driven HR practices to bolster talent retention and more. 

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