How Workforce Analytics Improves Talent Management


While the workforce is one of the largest expense heads and one of the greatest risks for an organization, it is also one of the top differentiators which can make or break the organization. There is a lot more to workforce analytics than just getting insights into payroll to manage the expense.

With huge volumes of data being generated by the various applications used by organizations, workforce analytics tools can provide critical insights into different aspects of the organization’s human resources. These insights can be leveraged to take informed and proactive decisions. Also called human capital analytics, workforce analytics can be used to quantify employee emotions, sentiments, relationships, interactions, decisions, transactions, company culture and more.

There are various uses where workforce analytics can be leveraged for different aspects of talent managementOpens a new window .

Talent Acquisition

Compared to applicant tracking systems, workforce analytics has more comprehensive and relevant data, keywords, and algorithms, and are therefore able to return more relevant results. While performing background checks, the workforce analytics algorithms are designed to automatically carry out background checks and use external data like social media activities to get a more detailed profile of the candidate, which helps reduce recruitment time.

Workforce analytics can also be used to find candidates who have a profile similar to existing employees. They also provide insight into which sources or channels have a higher ROI. As a result, organizations can target their recruitment spend on the sources and channels where the returns are the highest.  They can be used to find out the major risks in employee retention, the best candidate for a role, compliance risks, diversity related risks and many other similar insights.

Talent Nurturing

Workforce analytics provides insight into employee performance. While this information can be used to identify top performers, it can also help organizations identify what skills need to be improved for specific employees. To ensure enhanced performance and therefore revenues, such information can be leveraged for organizing relevant training programs and for carrying out highly focused interventions on high performers. As a result, organizations don’t suffer from skill gap, and at the same time, employees are happy to learn more skills.

Workforce analytics also helps alert employers or HR managers about employees who are thinking of changing jobs. Employees who are planning to leave their current jobs usually exhibit certain traits and these can be picked up by the workforce analytics solutions. Workforce analytics is also able to find certain attributes in the employee data that can point to any potential problems related to employee or team morale and productivity.

However, organizations have to take the necessary proactive or preemptive action on the insights to ensure key employees are committed and productive.

Talent Retention

One of the major factors that cause employees to leave is compensation. Workforce analytics can be used to analyze compensation anomalies and to determine a fair compensation on the basis of data collected from various relevant external sources, years of service, performance, etc.

Organizations usually conduct pre-interview behavioral analysis which provides insight on the basis of the candidate’s public record, social media usage, and psychological testing data. But, pre-hire analysis, a relatively new type of workforce analytics, can be used to find and predict problematic and undesirable behavior on the basis of candidate’s/employee’s behavior pattern during the hiring process. This information can be used to avoid potentially problematic candidates.  

Apart from problematic behavior, workforce analytics is also being used to analyze security or productivity related vulnerabilities with respect to current employees.

Another area where workforce analytics is being leveraged is succession and continuity planning. Organizations can use the insights into employee capabilities and career paths to identify, retain, and groom potential successors. In such cases, apart from training needs, workforce analytics can be used to predict time between promotions and this information can be used to retain potential successors.