Harnessing the Power of Predictive Analytics in HR

What if you could predict when a certain employee would leave your company? Or better yet, a large group of employees? The application of predictive analytics might be the biggest thing to hit HR in decades—and a great bonus to RPOs or MSPs, who are in charge of maintaining staffing levels for their customers.

What does it mean?

Predictive analytics means using computer models to analyze data and predict patterns and trends—usually in fields like finance and marketing. Until now, HR has put more emphasis on human intuition. But studies show that predictive analysis can actually trump human judgment, because it can balance and reconfigure more variables than we are capable of.

How can it be applied in HR?

Knowing the probability of important employee events before they happen can have a big bottom-line impact. For example:

  • Talent management and retention – Predictive analytics can identify trends such as when employees are likely to quit, factors that influence retention, and how accurate particular answers from employees are likely to be. The data it provides, such as how likely particular groups of employees are to resign at any given time, allows MSP and RPO managers to plan accordingly, ramping recruiting up or down.
  • Outside recruitment – Instead of the traditional practice of using past performance as an indicator of future performance, predictive analytics can identify more reliable indicators, and show your RPO or MSP the mix of skills, experience and competencies that will identify the right candidate.
  • Training and development – On a broad scale, predictive analytics can help you identify which competencies are easiest to learn, and which skills might benefit your company in the near future. On a smaller scale, you can use it to discern the approaches to training that will most suit a particular employee, and decide when they will next be ready for a significant learning opportunity.

But using predictive analytics on such an individual level brings up several legal and ethical questions, too. Where do we draw the line between the greater good of the company and the privacy of the individual? In the current heightened sensitivity following NSA spying revelations and other hacking concerns, employees might have a real problem feeling that they’re being tracked.

Can predictive analytics help you know your employees as well as you know your customers? Should it? Be sure to develop a number of safeguards regarding what types of employee data it will and will not collect, and assess the impact, both positive and negative, of any analytics project before proceeding.

Data plays a crucial part in making smart recruiting and staffing decisions. By partnering with a staffing expert, you will be able to leverage their expertise to collect, analyze and make sound decisions on your staffing data. Contemporary Staffing Solutions is the leading provider of Managed Staffing Programs (MSP) and Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) services and we would welcome the opportunity to discuss how we could help your organization. Contact us today to learn more!