When I talk with federal human capital officers about some of the challenges agencies face confronting the prospect of moving toward a more analytical approach to federal talent acquisition and federal performance management, here’s some of what I hear:
- “I know it’s important, but the thought of really ‘doing’ Talent or People Analytics is daunting.”
- “We’re uncertain about where to begin.”
- “An analytical approach sounds great, but we don’t have the expertise to pull it off.”
- “We have so much data that I’m sure can provide insight, but I don’t know how to start.”
- “Our organization and workforce data is dispersed in too-many silos.”
- “We don’t have adequate training in this area for our non-analytical HR resources.”
- “The tools we’ve looked at are difficult to use.”
As a federal human capital leader, if you’ve ever thought or uttered any of these refrains, you’re not alone.
The challenge of federal Talent Analytics
In our ongoing conversations with human capital executives and leaders, we hear these types of concerns often. There seems to be universal consensus that data and so-called Talent Analytics is the wave of the future in HR. However, there also seems to be a corresponding concern and trepidation about actually implementing Talent Analytics…or even fully understanding its value.
We’ve listened to federal HR leaders, asked them questions and researched this area extensively.
One of the things we hear consistently is that federal HR leaders are looking for easy-to-use tools that empower the people in their organizations. Tools that enable hiring managers and others within the organization to make better decisions with reliable information. Information that removes the guesswork from all aspects of talent management and workforce planning. Furthermore, they are looking for help in this area without the requirement of having to hire expertise such as a data scientist.
Human capital leaders understand that better decision making means no more reliance on instincts, but a reliance on hard data. And the faster they can analyze that data, the faster they can make decisions to help their agency. Speed can be the difference between hiring a top candidate and losing the candidate to the private sector or even another agency. Acting fast can be the difference between retaining a top employee and losing that employee.
Here are a few key elements that federal HR leaders tell me they expect from federal analytic solutions:
- easy-to-use analytics
- faster-to-implement analytics
- the ability to realize the benefits of analytics with fewer resources and fewer “experts”
- tools that help users of all experience levels – from novice to data scientist and everyone in between
- tools to easily gain insight into an organization’s workforce and improve decision making.
Getting to Federal Talent Management insight
The good news? Solutions to provide this insight now exist for federal agencies.
When federal human capital leaders can gain access to this type of solution, a whole new world opens up for them. As these solutions get implemented, these leaders and their organizations become empowered, as they gain insight that can truly transform their agencies. But the key here is that they can now achieve all this more quickly, as they implement HR technology that helps them gain this insight without embedding their agencies with data scientists and without high-priced consultants taking years to implement a solution.
The questions that can be answered are seemingly endless. But imagine the insight that can be gained and the accompanying impact on agency planning and strategy that can be achieved by answering important questions. Questions like this:
- Is there a logjam in the hiring process? Where is it occurring?
- Why is your agency losing out on hiring critical talent?
- Which teams’ new employees become faster contributors to agency success?
- What is the correlation between your best employees and their managers?
- Which employees are most at risk of leaving – and why?
With answers to these questions and a host of others, your agency can truly be transformed — and it won’t take years.
Federal People Analytics — the future is now
Imagine the power of obtaining and providing sophisticated insight on your agency’s applicants, hiring, onboarding, succession plans, engagement and performance that might be provided by a dedicated data scientist –without that data scientist.
True federal people analytics.
This is the future of federal talent management, and it’s here now.
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