How to Align HR with your Business Strategy

A Review written by Emily Mankio – HR Administrator in Sweden

Data and analytics play a major part in the future of HR as it enables organisations to gain insights and make forecasts about their workforces and how to make better informed business decisions. I was curious to learn more about how HR can have a greater impact on business by adopting a more evidence-based approach and I wanted to gain a deeper understanding about how to get started with HR analytics. I signed up for the HR Analytics Workshop arranged by Rethink HR on the 1st of June which was held by Sven Hultin and Nora Jaavall Hansen from Zalaris.

One of the key insights from this one-day workshop is that HR need to have insight into strategic business objectives before getting started with collecting, interpreting and analysing data. It is important to start at the right end and that is knowing which questions to ask and which business problems are most pressing to solve in the organisation. How do rewards impact peoples’ performance? Is there high turnover, and if so what are the costs? How can we reduce turnover? Are absenteeism rates high? Why, what can be done and what are the costs of absent employees? How can we increase the quality of new hires?

When starting at this end, HR can use data to analyse business relevant issues. HR analytics can help the HR department to gain insights into processes, spot trends, make relevant decisions and take proactive actions to improve organisational performance and profitability. Although there is research [1] showing that HR analytics programs can result in a high Return On Investment, too few companies have chosen to implement HR analytics to address their business needs. Those companies who have been successful in adopting HR analytics and see the value therein outperform their peers in respect to quality of hire, retention and leadership abilities followed by a higher rank in their employer brand.

As many as 80 per cent of organisations are only dealing with reporting and statistics of HR challenges and not many at all are using their data for descriptive, predictive or prescriptive analytics. This may be due to poor data, HR professionals’ low abilities in analytics and not being successful in presenting the value of implementing an analytics program.

After attending this informative and insightful workshop held by #teamzalaris I am excited to start interpreting and analysing data in my daily work at Derivco Sweden. I was given the advice to start small instead of turning it into a too ambitious a project as that is one of the common pitfalls. I’m definitely taking this advice to heart as I dive into HR analytics further!