‘Data Science‘ is not just something you see on ‘Star Trek’.
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This month the McKinsey Quarterly published a post “Power To The New People Analytics” which I recommend you take a look at. In short, it highlights the strategic and financial value to organisations’ they mention – and the value their own ‘predictive analytic’ modelling has provided.
This brought to the front of my ‘mind’s eye’ a post published on LinkedIn’s Pulse platform back in August last year. It was crafted, like McKinsey’s current article to focus attention of genuine talent practitioners who see themselves as innovators and early adopters of new talent / HR thinking and technology advancements. As I was the author of the August 2014 post, I thought it was worth updating and re-publishing in support of the Mckinsey article.
“Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.”Albert Einstein
Back in the 90’s when frontline recruitment at a commercial recruitment company was all about meeting performance KPI’s and never about analysing the reason around the useful KPR’s these KPI’s produced. Much of what recruiters did then, was a far cry from the day to day activities and experiences of both internal and commercial recruiters of today.
Corporate HR did not have specialist internal recruiters then, recruitment was just part of the general HR function and HR Business Partners were still a ‘fledgling’ strategy from David Ulrich’s HR model.
The fax machine was the technology of choice, offline press held the majority of job adverts and the applicant tracking and recruitment system looked remarkably like a grey metal filing cabinet and extra-long excel spreadsheet. You would be ‘upwardly mobile’ if you also had a desk based indexing system and a Filofax! Oh – and the only mobile device spoken about in early 90’s was this new technology from a leading tech company called ‘Psion’ and it’s new PDA.
Back then the rule for many businesses was to have its staff measured on a reactive based performance system, the thinking then was – historical evidence of previously successful performance tracking corresponded directly to creating a minimum ‘best practice’ activity target across key process actions. What was often lost to the many at the time; maximising operational performance was never about the numbers but it was all about the correlation between the actions or behaviours measured/tracked that provided them with the analytics needed to build informed decisions about operational performance of their HR and Talent Management strategy.
Move on to the present, and looking at all that’s changed since I started in the talent sector, there have been unbelievable (for me – as a first year recruiter back in 1990) advancements in business process understanding and the technology and skills to analyse it. Yet is seems our profession is still slow to take advantage of this great new age. Senior Management at too many organisations are still failing to see the greater value in embracing what they are already experiencing from their consumer marketing professionals. This department now expects data analytics as part of their business tool-kit, so they can undertake structured data gathering and perform layered data analytics.
“Data! Data! Data! I can’t make bricks without clay!”Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
If we visit performance measurement again today and look at Talent Management; granted we are now analysing more complex process interactions and outcomes. The recent Mckinsey article is an indicator that things are moving in the right direction. HR and Talent teams still have some way to go before they start catching up with the cool stuff Marketing are doing with data.
We now need to capture more data; specific to the wider needs of our overlapping ‘People Strategies’ – this will allow us to gain the insight we need to make successful decisions.
As your company looks to achieve its business goals it must understand and close the loop of business strategy – EVP – Employer Brand – Talent Management -– Talent Attraction/Acquisition. This will be successful or not; by how well you are able to conduct and understand your organisation’s Talent Analytics.
Knowing what this data is telling you and predicting what new behaviours might look like will then provide critical actions plans or action changes that go on to deliver successful outcomes to each segment of these interconnected strategies.
Talent Analytics provides the data to make management decisions across workforce and succession planning, promotion, compensation and talent acquisition, retention or placement strategies. In Talent Analytics, your HR or Recruiter employee performance efficiency is seen only as a part of what needs to be understood. Ratios like ‘time to new employee proficiency‘ can be far more useful to your company.
Back in July 2014 I tweeted a link to a great article in Forbes (#TalentAnalytics: A Crystal Ball For You) from Meghan Biro who explains the usefulness of Talent Analytics. I only had time to run a quick tweet then but thought the subject needed more comment from me. Do read her take on the subject.
“If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.”Albert Einstein
Top Image Source Via: As demand for Data Scientists grows, Dataiku raises €3 Million for Data Science Studio
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