The interest in people analytics is booming. Over 70% of organisations now consider people analytics to be a high priority1.

Increasingly, there is a shift away from internally focused HR data insights, to embedding people analytics in wider business operations.

As Concentra explains:

‘people analytics is tied directly to business strategy. It combines HR data, such as payroll and absence, with business information like operations performance data to inform decision-making on business outcomes, such as employee productivity and profitability.’2

However, what does the reality look like? Is investment being made in people analytics? Are the right processes in place to make it a success? And have organisations built the capability needed for effective people analytics?

At Change Associates, we recommend focusing on three areas to deliver successful people analytics:

1. Prioritise investment in the tools

  • A study by Tata Consultancy Services showed that only 5% of big-data investments were in human resources (where people analytics typically sits).3
  • Without investment in putting the right tools in place, organisations are struggling with data quality. We see many organisations trying to carry out analysis using their existing HCM system or resorting to using spreadsheets. But in many cases, this doesn’t provide the insight needed, as it doesn’t connect all the different data sources. It also means there is a risk to consistent and accurate data.4
  • We recommend the tool orgvueTM for people analytics. orgvueTM brings together data on people, processes and systems, enabling organisations to deliver people analytics for the organisation overall. It also allows you to easily cleanse and visualise data, ensuring data quality.

2. Ensure collaboration across the business

  • Collaboration is essential to join-up reporting systems and tools across the business
  • To deliver effective people analytics there needs to be cross-functional collaboration beyond HR. Concentra’s recent research highlights this, ‘as capability matures, collaboration with departments such as Finance and Operations, particularly on data sourcing, tends to increase’.5
  • One way to help achieve cross-functional collaboration is to build a multi-skilled team. This team brings together a range of skills and business knowledge and is responsible for getting support from other areas of the business. Building an effective team with the right skills is vital, in fact, ‘62% of HR professionals say that acquiring the right skills is the single biggest barrier to people analytics’.6 

3. Establish clear processes

  • People analytics need to be monitored on an ongoing basis, to track performance in the organisation and identify opportunities for improvement.
  • We recommend using orgvueTM to manage and streamline reporting. orgvueTM enables organisations to model different scenarios and drive data-led decision making, helping to translate insight into actions.

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Charlotte Gatehouse