The mass consumerization of IT has had a wealth of existential impacts on the average business, especially when it comes to leadership and decision-making. Cloud computing and other as-a-Service solutions have certainly had a positive overall impact on the private and public sectors, but also presented relatively subversive challenges involving expectations of professionals, consumers and others for intuitive, always-on products and tools.
One example of this is the ways in which companies are approaching big data and reporting analytics, especially when it comes to the expectations of the tools compared to the realities involved. Easy-to-use and highly accessible IT has ushered in an era in which businesses are beginning to believe that all they need to do is purchase a solution, then it will immediately come back with high returns on investment in a somewhat inherent fashion, rather than one that demands work.
This is simply not the case, though, as a wealth of policy changes, acquisition of expert support and constant refinement are needed to really get the most out of these technologies. Although analytics solutions are indeed becoming more intuitive and easy functioning, they do demand the right types of expertise in management to work properly and come back with high returns on investment, and leaders appear to be learning this fact the hard way currently.
The HR focus
Human resources departments have been increasingly targeted by new analytics deployments and strategies, as companies have seen just how effective the technology can be in streamlining workforce management. Human Capital Magazine recently reported that some leaders have been less than pleased about the returns they are seeing on these investments, and that it might not be the solutions that are bogging them down, but rather how they are approaching them.
According to the news provider, the Corporate Executive Board Company, an advisory firm, released a study that found 92 percent of decision-makers have not experienced substantive results following the deployment of HR analytics tools, while only 15 percent have succeeded in using them properly. Again, these tools are highly advanced and truly effective when used properly, but there are several matters that must be reconciled before they will yield returns in any situation.
The source cited comments from CEB director Aaron McEwan who asserted that the HR analytics solutions are indeed sophisticated enough to improve decision making in these departments, but setbacks are arising due to poor applications of the solutions within the average business. To correct this, he told Human Capital Magazine that HR departments will need to boost the credibility of their data, as well as the trust C-suite members have in that information.
This needs to happen soon, as well.
"Present the data that's relevant to the executive team; the information that they want to understand and will help them make business decisions," McEwan explained, according to the source. "Board members and CEOs now see talent management and human capital as the number one barrier to their growth strategy – what they're looking for is information to help them make decisions about that talent, and if HR presents this data in the right way, it will be recognized as that."
Analytics is still a relatively novel movement for many firms, but these setbacks do not necessarily need to occur regardless of how much experience a given business might have with data science. HR analytics tools can be provisioned from a reliable software vendor that will handle implementation, configuration, management, maintenance and optimization to ensure that the company does enjoy high returns on investments earlier on in the life cycle of the solutions.