Geetha Varma

Freelance HR Professional 


Amongst the HR professionals the new buzzword is “HR Analytics”. It has brought along with it a renewed excitement in the Human Resources function. We all agree that HR over the period of time has evolved from being a mere support function, caretaker of humans to now being the business strategic partner. This evolution has also forced the Organizations to look at HR with a new challenge and vigor. HR itself has evolved from being “gut – feeling” approach to data oriented business partner.

Definition – What does Human Resources Analytics (HR Analytics) mean?

Human Resource Analytics (HR Analytics) is an area in the field of analytics that refers to applying analytic processes to the human resource department of an organization in the hope of improving employee performance and therefore getting a better return on investment. HR analytics does not just deal with gathering data on employee efficiency. Instead, it aims to provide insight into each process by gathering data and then using it to make relevant decisions about how to improve these processes.

Techopedia explains Human Resources Analytics as correlationbetween business data and people data, which can help establish important connections. The key aspect of HR analytics is to conclusively show the impact the HR department has on the organization as a whole. By establishing a cause-and-effect relationship between what HR does and the business outcomes and then creating strategies based on that information – is what HR analytics is all about.

HR has core functions that can be enhanced by applying processes in analytics. These are acquisition, optimization, paying and developing the workforce of the organization. HR analytics can help to dig problems and issues surrounding these requirements and using analytical workflow will guide the managers to answer questions and gain insights from information at hand, then make relevant decisions and take appropriate actions.

Data of sorts has always been present in the corporate world to arrive at the right decisions. In HR however, its presence was not seen hotly. The pressing need for HR analytics is ever increasing as more & more organizations are demanding leaner, business intelligent and more strategic HR. Economic necessity too has played an important role in ensuring that HR focus on HR analytics. As Tracey Smith has analyzed HR analytics has evolved through stages in order of increasing value to the business; stages passing through opinion driven decisions ↔ reporting ↔ metrics, dashboards ↔predictive analytics ↔ strategically aligned data analysis.

HR analytics its tools, approaches will assist HR Managers to numerically tag people data and add value to the HR role. HR analytics will mean well for the organizations if they know what do they wish to achieve from the available data and which tool to use for the desired results.

Undoubtedly, in the coming years HR analytics will demand more attention and specific focus, pave way for more research on people data by HR to add & enhance people value in the organization apart from making HR emerge as a technical HR strategic partner.

End of the day what do the organizations want from their people – return on investment (ROI) and higher value added by their assets.

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