21st Century Workplace

The right technology investments can help drive growth for small business owners (although employees sometimes need some convincing).

According to a survey by Sungard, just 12% of HR departments work closely with the CIO. Unfortunately, the Information Technology and Human Resources departments of most organizations tend not to have a close relationship. Yet HR and IT share numerous areas of common interest that could serve as the foundation for a closer and mutually beneficial relationship.

In its 2015 Human Capital Report, research and analysis firm Deloitte identified a confusing and potentially worrisome new trend in HR: machines as talent. In this brief, we’ll explain how “machines as talent” doesn’t necessarily mean what you fear, and why many executives see it as the future.

What does “machines as talent” mean?

“HR is the new frontier for data science applications in business,” says Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder. According to a CareerBuilder survey, 90% of CEOs believe it is important for HR leaders to be “proficient” in workforce analytics, and 35% believe it is “absolutely essential.”
We previously posted an article on Workforce Analytics 101, introducing readers to one of the hottest new trends in HR. In fact, we’d almost hesitate to say “trend,” which might suggest it’s only temporary. Workforce analytics – which is the process of using people-related data to make HR and business decisions – is here to stay. That article is a good place to start; but once you understand the basics, how do you get started? Here are three ideas to keep in mind.
Workforce analytics – sometimes also called “people analytics” – means using data to make workforce and HR decisions, but it’s actually a little more sophisticated than that statement might suggest. Many companies trade in plenty of data, but they don’t necessarily ply that data in smart ways. According to HR researcher Josh Bersin, founder of Bersin by Deloitte, “only 14% [of businesses] have done any significant ‘statistical analysis’ of employee data at all.” That analysis includes things like using statistics to make or back up hiring decisions, linking pay and incentives to production and performance, and more.
Security – especially protecting customer and confidential company data – is a major concern for businesses in the modern world. From Target’s now infamous breach in 2013 to last year’s breath-taking theft of the records of 22.1 million U.S. citizens from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, security breaches have become all too common. But did you know that protecting your records is not just about encryption and other security protocols?
Big Data is, in a word, big. And it’s not just a trendy buzzword; serious money is being poured into its pursuit. A Towers Watson survey of over a thousand organizations found that HR data and analysis was one of the top three areas for HR tech spend. But what is Big Data all about, and how does it relate to HR?
There have never been more options for digitizing HR and HR functionality: onboarding employees, records management, recruiting, reporting.
How might HR technology serve you better?
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