Posts tagged ‘Human resources’

May 18, 2012

Moneyball and the HR Department: the age of big data


The human resources department is known for being touchy-feely, but in the age of big data, it’s becoming a bit more cold and analytical. From figuring out what schools to recruit from to what employees should be offered flexible work arrangements, data analytics are helping HR professionals make more informed decisions.

European Pressphoto Agency
Jonah Hill in a scene from ‘Moneyball’.

The success of Oscar nominated film Moneyball isn’t hurting either, said James Raybould, director of insights at LinkedIn. The movie, based on the Michael Lewis book, tells the true story of Oakland A’s General Manager Billy Beane. Using statistical analysis, Beane was able to recruit undervalued baseball players and lead his underfunded baseball club to the playoffs.

“We’re seeing a lot of companies actually aspire to that movie,” he said last week during a panel on big data at the Impact 2012: The Business of Talent conference convened by consulting group Bersin & Associates. “How do I make Moneyball for HR?”

Capital One, the credit card company and bank, has automated data reports on employee attrition, headcount and promotions. It is also beginning to analyze the characteristics of its most successful employees, like what schools they went to and what their majors were, said Mark Williams, statistical analysis manager for workforce analytics at Capital One. “Now we’re going back through resumes and creating a lot of that data,” he said.

In the wake of the financial crisis, when the compensation structure of many banks were criticized for incentivizing excessive risk-taking, Williams has also been asked to do an analysis of how pay is linked to sales performance.

“We do risk very well; we don’t lend to people who won’t pay us back…. Part of that is we have really good governance over our credit models; we have a staff of statisticians and that’s their job,” he said. “What I’m looking to do is a very similar thing in creating a governance process around some of the risk metrics for compensation.”

The big data revolution is just beginning to penetrate the HR industry, said Josh Bersin, chief executive and president of Bersin & Associates. Some companies have a progressive view of how data analytics can help their HR departments. Most don’t. “Of the companies we talk to, five to 15% are very sophisticated at analyzing people data,” he said.

At Luxottica Group, the Milan-based eyeglasses conglomerate, data analytics have disproven assumptions about gaps within the company’s recruiting strategy, said Sean Dineen, vice president of talent management and organizational development.

The data showed it took an average 96 days to fill a position with an external candidate. The management team believed that the company’s recruiters acted too slow, but a statistical analysis found hiring managers dragged their feet about making decisions about who to hire, Dineen said. It now takes the company 46 days to hire external candidates.

Luxottica, the parent company of brands like Ray-Ban and Oakley, is also using analytics to see how well it is does in promoting its best employees. “Are we actually moving high potential people?” he said. “Why is this person [who rates highly] in the way we evaluate talent in the same job they were four years ago?”

Joseph Walker covers technology for FINS.com, The Wall Street Journal’s jobs and career website.

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February 10, 2012

Does social media reduce efficiency @ work?


That is what claims a recent survey published by harmon.ie (a US based company selling  social  enterprise collaboration solutions). I would however question those results, as the survey has been conducted with IT users only, in large corporations. I doubt this group really IS representative in terms of habits when it comes to the usage of internet and social applications @ work.

The 2 most common interruptions are caused by phone (28%)…and email /email alerts (23%). Who said emails would disappear from the corporate world in 3 year’s time from now?

A disturbing 45% works only 15 minutes or less without getting interrupted, surely this would be an argument for home working as a way to increase productivity.

Summary survey

The majority (57%) of work interruptions now involve either using collaboration and social tools like email, social networks, text messaging and IM, or switching windows among disparate standalone tools and applications. In fact, 45% of employees work only 15 minutes or less without getting interrupted, and 53% waste at least one hour a day due to all types of distractions.

  • That hour per day translates into $10,375 of wasted productivity per person per year, assuming an average salary of $30/hour. That is more than the average U.S. driver will spend this year to own and maintain a car, according to the Automobile Association of America (AAA). That means that for businesses with 1,000 employees, the cost of employee interruptions exceeds $10 million per year.   The actual cost of distraction is even higher in terms of negative impacts on work output, work quality, and relationships with clients and co-workers.
  • The increasingly common addiction to web-based activity – which psychologists call ‘online compulsive disorder’ – is pervasive in the workplace.  For example, 2 out of 3 people will tune out of face-to-face meetings to communicate digitally with someone else.  The addiction is also taking over people’s personal lives.  Case in point:  the majority of people under the age of 40 stay digitally connected in bed, and 44% of people under 30 stay connected during a night out at the movies.
  • Two-thirds of companies and technology users are pursuing tools and strategies to minimize digital distractions, reflecting an understanding of the need to restore productivity that is being sapped by misuse of digital applications.
January 10, 2012

10 presentations on Social Media in HR & Recruiting


I utilize several resources to keep on top of what’s new and who’s saying what in the worlds of recruiting, social recruiting and human resources – and one of my favorite resources is Slideshare.net.

Lately, there have been several informative and helpful presentations uploaded related to using social media in HR and using social media for recruiting. Here are 10 favorites, with special thanks to Jennifer McLure, from Unbridledtalent.


December 12, 2011

Five key global business objectives 2011-2012