Big data in HR? Although the idea of big data isn’t new, lately it’s entered almost every organization regardless of industry or size – no sector is untouched by the power of it. This shift in the corporate environment has led to numerous changes that have been good for the business, and even HR professionals. According to Rachel Russell, Allegis Group Executive Director of Corporate Strategy, data is the fuel that enables organizations and individuals to grow and compete in modern times. Every function in an organization has opportunities to improve, but our ability to improve is limited by our understanding of where those opportunities are.
Data, in this case, provides a means of pinpointing those opportunities. Think of data that tracks how an operation is performing, identifies where different leads are coming from or measures how fast initiatives can be executed. In any of these performance measures, data reveals where improvements can be made. So, how can it help HR professionals? First, let’s take a closer look at big data.
What is big data?
Big data is essentially large amount of structured, semi-structured and unstructured data that is constantly streaming in through various mediums. SAS defines Big Data as a term that describes the large volume of data – both structured and unstructured – that inundates a business on a day-to-day basis. But it’s not the amount of data that’s important. It’s what organizations do with the data that matters. Big data can be analyzed for insights that lead to better decisions and strategic business moves.
According to Niti Sharma, analyzing the big data is crucial for the growth of your organization and business as a result. For the main reason that data analysis will reveal patterns and trends. This becomes very helpful for HR managers if they are trying to study attrition rate and other employee related patterns in an organization and find a solution. Ultimately, HR professionals can take data from any source and analyze it to find answers that enable cost and time reductions, new product development and optimized offerings, and smart decision making.
So, how can it help HR?
Performance Metrics is the one of the most common uses of Big Data for HR departments, and one that has helped HR managers in augmenting the productivity of employees. With the help of Big Data , HR professionals can measure employee performance and improvise on the work conditions for their employees. Performance Metrics can help even further by measuring high-performing employees and weeding out the lower-performing ones, so actions can be taken to help increase their productivity.
Big data can help in finding a source that will become useful in modeling numerous changes that will further impact on talent hiring, retention and engagement. In this case, predictive analysis offers greater ability to study the past hiring decisions and ensure that future hiring is done with sound and insightful decisions. From analyzing Big Data, HR managers can find out the pattern through which it can attract, recruit and retain top hires in the organization. Once equipped with visibility and knowledge into what works, HR professionals can work with other departments to scale solutions and make them operational. The winning organization is one that turns Big Data into real improvements that get baked into the way things get done.
Last but certainly not least, Big Data can have a tremendous impact in helping recruit top talent. Big Data analytics provides HR managers with the tools and information needed to visualize the pattern that leads in selecting the top talent available in the market. Big Data helps in mapping the skills set in align with an organization’s strategy, thus ensuring that the candidates coming for the interview are best-suited to the roles advertised for the positions in a company. Combine this with talent management software, and the HR department is locked and loaded for sorting through [what could’ve been endless amounts] of applications to find the best-suited candidates.
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