People analytics is the study of data, related to employee management processes and functions, to allow an organisation to make better data-driven decisions.
What is people analytics
People analytics is a methodical gathering and evaluation of data, through a variety of collectors, integrated into the daily people processes and functions within an organisation, helping to identify challenges and opportunities.
The reporting and forecasting based on this data should generate goal-orientated insights for organisational leadership to use when creating future strategies for talent acquisition, upskilling of the current workforce, better performance management approaches, and much more. While the roots of people analytics stretch back to the middle of the last century, recent trends have shifted toward predictive analysis, to allow organisations to be better prepared for change and more dynamic in their operational outlook. Examples of this more pro-active attitude to analytics can be seen in the use of machine learning (or AI), real-time interactive data visualisation, and a much more sophisticated appreciation of data science at the senior levels of the HR function and represented in the C-suite.
HR and analytics
People analytics is changing the way HR functions and what some of it’s core interactions with the rest of an organisation look like.
What HR is and does – Now able and expected to collect and analyse increasing volumes of data, has empowered HR to have a larger voice in organisational strategy. Critical insight is the new currency that HR deals in and aligning this to the people it services is essential.
HR business interactions – The importance of HR’s engagement with internal and external stakeholders has taken on even more importance and people analytics can make conversations more transparent and facilitate more evidence-based decision making.
The HR-employee relationship – A consumer-grade experience is the expectation of most employees today. HR has to mobilise the data and analytical tools it possesses to make every interaction personal and productive.
The quality of data and insights – No longer ‘a nice to have’, the demand for data from HR teams at a much greater frequency puts additional pressures on the traditional HR tech stack.
The importance of people analytics is only likely to increase so ensuring that HR teams are being instilled with a data-enabled mindset is a must for the future to create more sustainable long-term business success.