Everyone knows that Big Data offers tremendous benefits for businesses, from sales to marketing, accounting, and everything in between. When you think about Big Data, HR is probably not a business function that immediately comes to mind, yet it’s a business function that can reap big benefits.
But Why HR?
Aren’t analytics best suited for helping companies better target their customers, attract leads, and convert website visitors? Yes, but many of those positive customers and bottom-line outcomes are made possible by people. And when companies leverage Big Data to determine the right perks and benefits that foster loyalty, find the right level of flexibility to provide employees with work-life balance, improve the effectiveness of training programs, and predict how likely a particular candidate or employee is to jump ship, they can leverage their human capital in incredibly effective ways.
Streamlining Hiring with Big Data
It’s always been relatively simple to gather certain data on employees, such as salaries, the value of benefits packages, and sales data. But today’s technology puts Big Data at HR’s fingertips, making it possible to readily gather and analyze data before, during, and after the hiring process, empowering companies to make smarter hiring decisions and build a more efficient workforce.
Talent acquisition software, for instance, enables human resources teams to gather essential information about candidates, narrow down the candidate pool to only the most qualified applicants, hire the most desirable candidate, and keep them with an attractive benefits package perfectly tailored to their needs.
What’s more, Big Data is useful for tracking and monitoring the effectiveness of recruitment efforts, enabling HR teams to hone in on the most effective recruitment strategies that produce top-tier candidates. Because every functional business unit aims to do more with less, the power to shorten the hiring process and cut recruitment costs is quite appealing.
Tapping into Employee Engagement and Motivation
By tracking employees’ activity on the job, HR can readily identify and reward top performers. Of course, the flip side of the coin applies here, too: on-the-job data can reveal insights into ineffective behavior and even violations of policy or expected standards, activities which always impact the company’s growth in some way – enabling HR to take prompt corrective action.
Metrics on employee engagement, motivation, and performance can also enable companies to retain their most valuable team members and make more efficient use of their human capital. Big Data can reveal if an employee is struggling in their position, for instance, prompting HR and management to implement additional training and other support that can boost performance. In some cases, moving an employee to another location or to a different role is a win-win, making it possible to leverage their skills and talents in a way that benefits the business. Every worker wants job satisfaction, and few are happy in jobs in which they’re struggling to succeed.
Improving Resource Utilization
Human capital management is a big focus in today’s workforce. Companies who make the best use of their resources – including their talent – can achieve more than competitors who are wasteful with their resources. Poor scheduling, for instance, can mean the death of a field services organization, as field techs become frustrated with inefficient routes and have to deal with angry customers because they didn’t arrive within the scheduled service window.
There are dozens of tools that enable HR to leverage data for better workforce management and resource utilization, from tools that facilitate data-driven dispatching and scheduling to those that help balance revenue-producing tasks with expense-generating tasks. In the modern enterprise, it’s all about efficiency.
Improving Employee Retention
In industries that typically experience high employee turnover, Big Data can be a powerful tool for improving retention. Traditionally, employee exit interviews provided some insight into an individual’s motivations for leaving the company, but this anecdotal data often did little, if anything, to improve overall retention in the long run.
By leveraging data analytics, today’s HR teams can identify trends and patterns, uncover the reasons employees leave, and implement data-driven programs aimed at enhancing loyalty. Through regular employee satisfaction surveys providing quantitative data, HR can analyze their workforce in new ways to uncover the needs and desires of employees, providing the right benefits and perks, the right level of support, and the right level of flexibility to retain top talent.
Big Data didn’t arise initially as a tool for human resources, but it’s certainly proving to be a valuable strategic opportunity for HR teams that leverage its power to streamline hiring processes, provide better, more efficient, targeted training, better engage employees, and foster retention. Your people are the driving force behind your business. Don’t you want to utilize them to their fullest potential?