Posted by  Lance Mercereau  Published on  12 Jun 2017
  • HR Strategy

"The data is there in organizations. It just needs to be aggregated for visualization and analysis"

I wonder if there is an imbalance in the world of human resources. 

In the past six months, I have witnessed two significant trends:

  • HR leaders are doubling up efforts on improving how they recruit candidates, bringing into their organizations the right talent
  • The number of software firms focused on helping HR teams better recruit employees has skyrocketed with some experts estimating the market to reach $2.7 billion by 2022

Are these two trends related?  Most likely.  If there is a market need, software and services providers will quickly fill the gap and offer solutions.  However, and this is the crux of this article: should HR focus on other high value work?

Don’t get me wrong.  Identifying and recruiting the right candidates is vital because hiring the wrong candidate can be costly for organizations with the price tag being up to $50,000 per employee, according to a survey from CareerBuilder. Furthermore, based on research by Jobvite, 65% of recruiters claim talent shortage is the biggest challenge in hiring employees. Better recruitment can’t be neglected.

Yet, should HR leaders slightly realign or re-order their focus?  I believe so, and it is on improving the productivity of current employees.  This is accomplished by collecting more business insight into the workforce, which will be the foundation for multiple HR initiatives including improving the candidate recruitment process and success rate by bringing in higher quality employees into the organization.  

Taking into consideration that the largest cost is the hundreds or thousands of current employees, HR teams using data and analytics can create much more value faster by looking after its known human capital than focusing on the much smaller candidate pipeline.

I know, from speaking to many HR teams, a challenge they face is creating a holistic view of their workforce, including the cost and contribution of people through each stage of the employee lifecycle.   The data is there in organizations. It just needs to be aggregated for visualization and analysis.  It sounds easier said than done – and it’s true. 

Turning data into insight is much easier with recruitment data than grappling with the many types or variety of data required to create a single view of workers through the entire employee lifecycle. However, the business value justifies the time and effort to focus on leveraging data on current employees.

To help HR leaders and their teams value human capital, and to use data to direct immediate action, we have developed an HR analytics savings calculator.  This free self-service tool shows the benefits of focusing on the middle part of the employee lifecycle (current employees) than on the earlier stages of recruitment.