HR Professionals Need to Utilise Big Data or Risk Falling Behind the Curve

LONDON, UK (November 3, 2014) Research from global RPO and talent management specialist, Cielo, reveals that HR professionals are risking falling behind the curve by failing to make the most of big data.

According to its Talent Activation Index, which surveyed 750 global HR and talent management professionals, 72% of leading companies across the globe rate their use of data and analytics to inform workforce strategies as ‘very effective’. In comparison, only 6% of organisations deemed ‘laggards’ – or poor performers – were using analytics well, significantly reducing their competitive advantage.

As a result, Cielo has called on HR professionals to improve their use of big data through a simple step-by-step process. As part of its new white paper Demystifying Big Data to Make Better Hires the global RPO and talent management specialist provides a straightforward guide for HR professionals unfamiliar with this vital tool.

  1. Leverage existing technology: In many cases the technology is already in place to allow HR teams to make the most of big data. For example, many businesses already have an applicant tracking system (ATS) or a human resources information system (HRIS), both of which record employee data, including demographics, academic background, training and much more information that makes up what is known as big data.
  2. Set benchmarks: In order to put the data to work, benchmarks need to be in place to not only provide the foundation for talent strategies, but also to ensure the outcome is aligned with business objectives. Using the information already available, HR can create organisational assessors, review quality indicators and process measurements such as time-to-hire, cost-per-hire and quality of candidate. Benchmarking these against wider industry standards can provide a baseline for on-going improvements in talent acquisition and management.
  3. Take this further: Having already used the data to source and manage talent more effectively, deeper analysis enables HR to challenge traditional perceptions of what ‘good’ looks like. Using predictive talent analytics HR teams can prove what performance indicators really matter for key roles and proactively target the right candidate pools.
  4. Collaborate to make better hires faster: As with many people processes, big data does not need to be managed by HR teams alone. Given that the analysis of statistical information might be a skill that such professionals need to develop, there needs to be serious consideration as to how other departments can input into this strategy. 

Sue Brooks, Cielo Chief Innovation Officer, commented:

“Big data isn’t a simple buzz term that will disappear over time. As our research shows, it is already providing a competitive advantage for many leading businesses when it comes to managing staff and identifying key potential talent. So why not more? Perhaps the biggest barrier is the misbelief that this requires the implementation of complex or expensive systems. But that’s simply not true because most organisations already have many of the necessary tools at their disposal. And these four steps provide a great starting point for HR teams to make use of them.”