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Overwhelmed by People Analytics? 3 Baby Steps you Can Take Today

Adrian Dixon

July 4, 2016

BabyStepsBlogJust when you thought you were on top of the newest HR trends: video interviews, payroll automation, virtual conference rooms… “People Analytics” crops up. What does it even mean? And where should you start?

The term people analytics refers to any data-backed people management decision. While it seems to be the hottest buzzword in HR circles today, be weary of implementing too quickly. In an expert panel last week David Woodward, Chief Product and Innovation Officer at Ceridian put it well, “HR mustn’t run before it can walk. Getting an accurate headcount is still a challenge for some companies.” 

If this rings a little too true at your firm, don’t panic – small, calculated steps can quickly put you ahead of your competition and there is a lot of new software out there to help you.

Have 15 minutes? Here’s where to start:

  1. Assess Your Current Pain Points
    What is ailing your company the most right now? Remember to be specific. Hiring process is outdated? Too big, narrow it down. 70% of new sales hires are leaving within 3 months? That’s manageable.
  2. Select a Metric to Attack
    Now that you’ve identified a pain point, what is the strongest measure of success in that area? In hiring and retention, reduced turnover (how to calculate turnover) is a good place to start. In benefits, reduced employee sick days may be a strong indicator. What number speaks to your goals?
  3. Research Your Options
    Now that you’ve selected a single metric, you can begin to research available people analytics for your target. Software is emerging for all areas of recruiting and talent management, and many companies offer free trials or reduced prices for early adopters of their technology. These types of discounts will not last long as people analytics become common practice.
  4. (Bonus) Ask Around
    Depending on your line of work, you may be among the first or last to hear of people analytics. Start the conversation at the watercooler. If you’re the first, you can plant the seed that may one day make you the office hero. If you’re the last, you may find your firm is looking for more ways to implement data-backed decisions and score yourself a lucrative new project.

15 minutes to be the office hero? Not bad. Let me know how it goes!