Making HR a mission-critical element of a business’s ongoing success.

Posted by Steve Carter on Aug 16, 2016 8:27:00 PM
Steve Carter
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Here’s a statistic to chill the heart of any HR manager: half of hires that fail do so because of a bad fit with their manager [1].

Here’s the good news: that number is going to fall steadily over the next few years. The reason? Organizations are turning more and more to the digital world to make good hiring decisions.

Right now, most hiring decisions are made on the basis of technical capability (can the person actually do what’s required?) and gut feeling. While that may work for some roles, it’s a terrible model for most.

Enter big data analytics. Organizations are already using this tool to gain profound insights into their customers, their supply chain and other, often complex, aspects of the business.

Just as the Hubble Telescope has done for astronomy, big data analytics both clarifies what’s already visible, and – more tellingly – makes visible things that were previously completely hidden from view.

And it’s doing that for HR.

In 2013, we set out to use big data analytics to eliminate the guesswork from the recruiting process. We asked if we could predict a culture fit between hiring managers and job candidates without the need for surveys and assessment tools.

The answer has been a resounding “yes”.

Our first client, one of the world’s largest cable companies in Charlotte, NC, has reported the following benefits:

  • A better fit between the organization and its new hires, leading to greater engagement, fewer conflicts, and increased productivity.
  • Reduced turnover, reduced waste, greater retention, reduced litigation.
  • Less time between advertising and ultimately filling a position.

One outcome of this sea change is that the strategic value of HR within organizations is now being recognized. By shifting the data crunching task to computers, while also receiving deeper insights from those same machines, HR is engaging in issues that profoundly impact the culture of the organization.

Among the drivers of this change are job candidates and employees themselves, who are flocking to cloud-based HR systems to manage their careers. They want to advance faster and adopt leadership roles sooner. They value mentorship, and expect employers to offer innovative reward and compensation packages. Companies who keep doing HR the traditional way will not have first choice of the top candidates.

Another driver is that analytics tools are getting simpler and cheaper. Another is that big data is making something possible that used to be just a pipe dream: actually quantifying the value of human capital. And guess what? When something can be measured, it gets taken much more seriously around the boardroom table.

All of that is good news for forward-thinking HR specialists. You’re being joined by analytics experts from other areas of the business – and their partnership will allow you to make great decisions. The business will enjoy a happier work environment, more vibrant culture, lower cost of engaging new staff, and effective pathways for individual career development.

The HR specialist, in the meantime, will enjoy an elevated status. With artificial intelligence to support decision making, HR will be seen as a solid, science-based contributor to the business, and those in HR roles will be seen as providing a mission-critical element of the business’s ongoing success.

Did you know?

To find out more download our infographic, The Brave New World of HR.

[1] “A Gallup study of 7,272 U.S. adults revealed that one in two had left their job to get away from their manager to improve their overall life at some point in their career.” http://www.gallup.com/businessjournal/182321/employees-lot-managers.aspx

Topics: employee culture fit, cultural fit, organizational culture fir, hiring

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