Consultants struggle to differentiate between HR metrics and HR analytics and use the terms interchangeably when selling and recommending technology solutions. This causes unnecessary confusion in the marketplace as pointed out by Luk Smeyers from iNostix in The Netherlands. Luk addressed this confusion by providing a handy reference guide for HCM consultants outlining the difference between HR metrics and analytics terminology. This entry takes a look at the difference between talent metrics and analytics technology in terms of what they measure and which area – HR or the business – receives the most value.
Talent Metrics: Tangible Data (Easy to measure, Low Value).
Talent Analytics: Intangible Data (Hard to measure, High Value).
Talent metrics (also known as workforce analytics) measures tangible data such as headcount, attrition, and compensation. This is appropriate to recommend when you are selling to HR. Talent analytics provides strategic talent insight and measure intangibles such as how employees work and what they are driven by, providing context that’s otherwise missing from the data. This is appropriate to recommend when you sell to the business. Here are some common talent challenges that illustrate the differences (and who derives the most value):
Talent Metrics (HR): How many top sales reps left last quarter?
Talent Analytics (Business): Why do my top performing employees keep leaving?
Talent Metrics (HR): What is the average compensation for engineers across the organization?
Talent Analytics (Business): Why are our top software engineers dissatisfied even after we’ve given everyone a department-wide raise?
Talent Metrics (HR): Who is next in line to become our CEO?
Talent Analytics (Business): Will the CEO candidate align or conflict with the rest of the executive team?
Talent Metrics (HR): How many customer service reps do we have?
Talent Analytics (Business): Is our customer service staff optimized to meet this quarter’s customer service improvement goal?
Again, it really depends on your goals and what challenges you are seeking to solve. If you are selling to HR and seeking a technology solution that provides transactional, historical talent data such as headcount, compensation and attrition, talent metrics technology has done that for the past 20 years. If you’re selling to the business and seeking solutions that provide your clients with strategic talent insight, let’s talk.
Mike Kennedy is a Technical Evangelist at Talent Analytics Corp. He can be reached via firstname.lastname@example.org.