A significant number of HR professionals do not have a clear understanding of what big data is nor have much knowledge of its importance. They are clueless about the effect of big data in their day-to-day basic activities. The term big data has become a huge buzzword in the business world for the last couple of years.
Big data refers to massive pieces of information that is constantly building from our every activity. The distinct quality of such voluminous information is that it gives predictive capabilities, to business/ managers, through different types of processing.
This data is helpful for HR as they will have the ability to use this data to identify patterns and at the same time establish links between engagement, productivity, well-being, management styles etc. HR managers simply need to identify the information which they need to access as well as its planned goal.
Feedback and communication should be encouraged by a team and for this different sources/ apps should be used. For instance if we need our team to be more engaged and focused on what they are currently doing by increasing communication and feedback, then we need to find out the factors which motivate the team members and also need to identify the major engagement drivers. Based on this information, we can plan and work out a strategy for improving team communication. So basically, we will collect data, and will analyze data using an employee engagement software so that we can set a measurable plan that can be optimized over a period of time.
Big data adds an immense value to different processes in an organization like learning and development, employee engagement, talent acquisition, retention etc. Big data finds a way to organize all the HR decisions made, then compares them with the ongoing workforce trends so that HR processes are improved.
Employee engagement using big data can be done in various ways. Some of them are explained below;
Recognize and Analyze relation between employee engagement and retention:
The primary goal of any business is to earn a profit, however managing human capital is the second most important factor to run a business. If a business is earning money then it must invest money in its employees, as it is rightly said to earn money you should spend money first.
Big data allows management of employees by identifying and analyzing the relationship between engagement and retention. As a result of big data it becomes easy to map how and why employees are engaged to what they are doing, how that engagement is useful for the business and also what the majors that can be taken to retain them. By this analysis, HR can easily identify trends, create success roadmap, make predictions etc. which will help to transform the ways of doing business. Cloud-based software solutions help organizations to collect, process and organize information, which later on HR can use for further interpretation.
Set clear HR Goals:
During earlier times, HR lacked focus and there was no clarity on where they were heading and what will take them there. Lewis Carroll had the perfect idea to describe this approach. He said, “if you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.”
However, now the scenario is completely different. By the introduction of big data, it is very easy and practical to choose and prepare the proper road for our organization. But before this, we need to finalize the purpose why we are going there because in order to construct a road our purpose should be clear. To achieve this we need to set clear KPI’s like;
- Tenure (Years of association)
- Happiness Index
- Retention Rate
- Voluntary Attrition Rate
Decide and choose the correct Software/System/Solution:
Digitalization is the necessity of current era and businesses are gaining a lot from it. HR managers can use online tools that are easy to operate and are very convenient as it offers flexibility to collect and store bigger volumes of information. These online tools are easily accessible anytime from anywhere and from any device and even can be used during meetings, holidays etc.
Big data ensures that right data is collected which is important for employee engagement to take it to another level. It ensures that proper time is spent in collecting data and gathering feedback from the employees. The time frame should be selected for data collection and employees should be involved in it so that relevant information is collected. So HR should always make sure that if any new software is introduced proper training should be given to employees so that data collection process goes smoothly.
Measuring collected data:
Once data is collected and relevant analytics is done, then we need to compare this data with the current set of HR goals and we need to see if we are meeting the milestones. In this process, we end up planning and implementing strategies that will help us meet our goals.
Adjustment and Re-Planning:
Information gathered by using big data will helps check if right strategies are in place for the benefit of the organization. Next year strategies for the business should be adjusted based on the data collected and the results generated. We need to re-plan and fine tune our system, set new goals, and keep a constant check if there is any improvement in the data collection.
The major requirement for HR in the present time is to be a strategic partner for the business. Old generic methods of HR are no longer applicable. Big data gives more advanced ways to processes that focus in the right direction so that maximum results are achieved. This data is more valuable for HR in employee engagement and also helps them increase productivity and improve employee retention ratio.