Businesses worldwide are in the midst of a data feast and statistical Renaissance. Data scientists are being hired at a rapid clip, the likes of which haven’t been seen since the launch of the Internet and the frenzied search to hire anyone who could do HTML programming and build web sites. Based on reports from the front lines of business analysis, it would appear safe to conclude that the promise of Big Data is being realized daily. But is it? (more…)
Right now senior leadership in both the business and in HR are leaving value on the table. We have to end the “business as usual,” nonintegrated way enterprise analytics and human capital analytics are conducted.
The lack of coordination is understandable at first glance. People are very busy: dividing business and HR process management and the accompanying analytics up into separate domains makes it easier to tackle the tasks. That way the leadership of the business and the leadership of HR stick to what they know best, including the analytics needed to monitor and assess progress. But the divide-and-conquer approach is precisely where things go wrong. (more…)
HR is becoming more and more data based and analytical. Yet the insights that we’re getting from the data are not increasing as quickly as the rapid proliferation of software tools, seminars, and people with “data scientist” titles. Why is that? A big part of the problem lies in the kinds of analysis we’re doing, with too much emphasis focused on techniques that appear to provide new insights, but which more often than not are a distraction: data mining and linkage analysis. (more…)
(a.k.a. Are You Helping to Improve Strategy Execution Where It’s Most Needed?)
For decades HR has been searching for the right ways to make strategic contributions to the business. I have my own opinions about how HR can do that, some of which are detailed below and in previous posts (for example, on HR scorecards and on measuring ROI). But even more important than what it should do is what it should not do. HR needs to stop obsessing over making HR processes world class.
The balanced scorecard has popularized the idea that organizations should regularly measure and monitor key metrics about people. And if there are data available that describe what is going on with the people in your organization, what’s the harm in reporting them? Isn’t more information better than less?
The answer is “yes and no.” Sticking your head in the sand and acting as if there are no data to inform human capital decisions ignores reality. But reporting HR data simply for the sake of sharing is not smart. If you present data without knowing its full value and how to act on it, you will create more problems than you solve. You need a model of what’s driving the behavior you’re observing and why you should care about it. (more…)