HC analytics

I just received a report from Accenture called The New Generation of Human Capital Analytics. It synthesizes the work of several writers on this topic predominantly Thomas Davenport and John Boudreau in a practical way with useful case examples.

Reading it through HR and line managers could compile a checklist of things that need to happen to turn raw data into valuable business insights. To save them time – I've had a go at it. See what you think, and let me know.

Reading it through HR and line managers could compile a checklist of things that need to happen to turn raw data into valuable business insights. To save them time – I've had a go at it. See what you think, and let me know.

• Metrics: must be both historic and predictive, consistent across the business lines and stable over time to enable comparisons, benchmarking, and performance improvement activity.

• Analysis: must be across the enterprise not localized, allowing strategic decisions (HR and business) to be made confidently.

• Leaders: must be interested in fact based analytics and good advocates for a rigorous and organization wide approach to this. Leaders must also be ready and able to act on insights yielded by the analytical process.

• Analysis: should be focused and targeted on the few main value added HC activity and not be an across the board process. (This assumes that people have the skills to identify what to focus on).

• Skills: there must be people in the organisation who are skilled analysts capable of providing a useful and actionable flow from metrics identification to metrics interpretation, assessment, and recommendations.

The report concludes by saying:

HR departments are now beginning to look beyond historical data that is a byproduct of transaction and compliance reporting systems. They are asking important questions about what really matters: Do our recruiting processes create an adequate leadership pipeline? Do we currently have the right skills mix to achieve our goals? What skills will we need in five years? Which people and what positions create the most value for our organization?

Showing them a path to answers to these types of questions is a a graphic in the document the "Ladder of human capital analytical applications" that shows how analytical capabilities tend to build on each other from a foundation of good data – data that is accurate, consistent, integrated, accessible and relevant. I think this is true, and also perfectly obvious but is also probably the most difficult step on the ladder to achieve. Wresting different data sets from different software into a consolidated warehouse that people have easy access to is no mean or cheap feat. Thinking about this brought to mind a John Farnham song I used to like – and re-found just now 'The first step is the hardest to take'

If you wanna change the system
You better build a better one
You're gonna meet resistance
But the time will come

You need hope (the will to learn)
Don't give up (the tide will turn)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s