The Power of Prediction: Leveraging People Data to Enhance Your HR Team

An effective Human Resources team will serve as the first and last line of defense against Covid-19 both in the workplace and surrounding it.

Whether the modern business world likes it, or not, Covid-19 is here to stay. For the modern Chief Human Resources Officer – which we will refer to as the CHRO from here on – and their HR Team, this is a significant issue. We are approaching the end of 2020 and many executives had assumed that by this point we would have made greater progress in negating the impact that the virus had on business in the day-to-day.

An effective Human Resources team will serve as the first and last line of defense against Covid-19 both in the workplace and surrounding it. CHRO’s are well placed to reach out to their employees and provide a helping hand in these trying times. As Kelly Steven-Waiss, CHRO of Here Technologies suggests, “as a key advisor to the CEO, the CHRO must not only be able to understand the external threats and drivers but translate those into strategies to mitigate risk and leverage opportunities.”

Leveraging People Data to Enhance Your HR Department

Skills, Culture, Retention, Recruitment and Recognition – these are the five areas of focus for the modern CHRO, but they are as nothing if these executives do not first build off of a base of actionable information and insight. Data and analytics have always been the tools by which human resources measure their success and now, more than ever, executives should be using it to enhance their systems.

Data and Analytics

HR teams are sitting on a powerful resource, but few are actively making use of it. Data, analytics, statistics; this readable information is generated constantly through the day-to-day activities of individuals and by meaningfully drawing patterns and conclusions from them we can see new ways of improving business as well as the internal processes of any organization.


Driven by widespread adoption of cloud services within HR, companies are beginning to invest heavily in the programs, platforms and tools that leverage data for all aspects of workforce planning, talent management and operational improvement.

According to a PWC’s recent HR Technology Survey, out of 600 HR leaders 72% have or will have core HR applications in the cloud in 2020, aside from increasing efficiency and productivity purposes, the most significant advantage of this technology was it’s ability to generate actionable workplace insights. Fewer than 39%, said that they had dashboards that could provide enterprise-level insight on employees that could then be used to enhance workplace processes.

Furthermore, we’ve seen a marked increase in the number of HR professionals looking to onboard innovative HR software which both generates and records Big Data for executives to utilize in pursuit of the enhancement of their HR divisions.

People Analytics

The last thing the modern CHRO should want to do is lose valued members of staff. Employee retention is a powerful weapon in the war for talent and according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) between January and June 2019, 3.5 million employees left their jobs in the US voluntarily.


Obviously, Covid-19 has facilitated a culture change within most businesses, but this needn’t be seen as a bad thing. In fact, it could potentially lead to a better system of operation entirely. According to SHRM 1 in 5 employees have left a job due to workplace culture and 58% of those who left a job due to culture claim People Managers are the main reason they ultimately left.


Human Resources expert Jonathan Ferrar describes People Analytics as “the discovery, interpretation and communication of meaningful patterns in workforce related data to inform decision making and improve performance”.

During 2017, Forbes found in their High-Impact People Analytics study that 69% of the companies that they studied were integrating their data to build a People Analytics database. In the intervening years, this will have skyrocketed and particularly now, the generation of actionable intelligence is essential.

McKinsey recently discovered that in companies with an effective people analytics resource, there was an 80% increase in the efficiency of the recruiting process, a 25% rise in business productivity and a 50% decrease in attrition rates.

To learn more, download the full report here or continue the debate at the HR Insight Summit, a GDS Summit, where we bring together senior Human Resources executives who are actively seeking to share, learn, engage, and find the best technology solutions.

GDS Group hosts experts to help experts. We strive to provide an atmosphere for our attendees that enables them to confidently lead their companies through major transformation projects. For information on upcoming events, view our  Digital Summits. To remain current on our activities, visit GDS Group on LinkedIn | Facebook | Twitter.