09 Apr 2021 20:31 IST

Rethinking HR for remote work

People analytics, an incredibly data-driven and goal-oriented method, is key in digital HR

Human resource management has evolved dynamically to keep up with the sudden shift in the current business culture. With the rise of digital advancements and remote working environments, HR professionals need to update their skill set to make smarter, data-driven decisions for better talent management and increased business profits. This has given rise to the demand for individuals who hold expertise in people analytics and digital HR.

Often referred to as talent or HR analytics, people analytics is an incredibly data-driven and goal-oriented method of analysing all people processes, functions, challenges, and chances at work, to elevate these systems and attain business success. On the other hand, digital HR is process optimisation in which social, mobile, analytics and cloud (SMAC) technologies are held to make HR more productive, effective, and united. In other words, it's a structural shift in the way human resources function.

Let us look at some of the key jobs that people analytics and digital HR professionals take on. They are as follows:

Senior manager-HR analytics

HR analytics managers manage extensive HR products, analytical projects, and design-innovative HR solutions using people-data. They work closely with their senior stakeholders.

Global people analytics specialist

Global people analytics specialists gather, analyse, and maintain employee engagement data. For this purpose, they may use SaaS tools. They also deal with analysing multiple key projects such as designing Worldwide Employee Survey.

Specialist HR intelligence and people analytics lead

This job role deals with the development and documentation of platform-level HR reporting and metrics. These experts offer steady and clear communication of demographics, compensation decisions, and talent management.

Head of people and culture

These individuals must report to the CEO and senior management. They ensure high employee engagement outcomes. The role requires supervising all regular HR functions, industrial relations, occupational health and safety, and risk functions.

HR business intelligence specialist

They use business intelligence to create, implement, and communicate employee performance results. HR BI specialists collaborate with senior human resource leaders on data collection, presentation, and storytelling to make better business decisions. A few basic skills that people analytics and digital HR professionals must possess are as follows:

Interpersonal skills

Among numerous must-have professional skills, interpersonal skills are at the top. It helps employees develop and cultivate influential working relationships with each other and with their clients. Adding to that, they build an overall positive work environment with good interpersonal skills. Non-verbal communication, empathy, self-awareness, active listening, and interpersonal skills go a long way for HR experts.

Reporting and analytical skills

HR experts can communicate the insights they gather through data to the stakeholders efficiently using these skills. Reporting and analytical skills can include creating, reading, and interpreting HR reports, using data from different HR information systems.

Technical skills

HR professionals need to know how to use social media tools such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to build stronger networks. Softwares for talent acquisition, and talent management come in handy as far as digital HR is concerned.

Good understanding of KPIs

An excellent understanding of KPIs is an essential part of people analytics. Absenteeism rate, overtime hours, training costs, and employee productivity are a few critical KPIs and metrics that HR experts should be familiar with.

Future-ready skills

Another important set of skills in people analytics and digital HR are the ones that enable HR professionals to future-proof their organisation. Companies want to invest in the upskilling of employees, who provide long-term loyalty and services to the organisation.

They say necessity is the mother of all inventions. Due to the restrictions imposed on businesses due to the pandemic, there have been tremendous changes in organisations and their teams' working methods. Most companies have taken a moment to rethink what their future workforce might look like and how they can start preparing for it right away.

As per EY's global Physical Return and Work Reimagined (PRWR) research, 79 per cent of hiring professionals are looking to extensively or moderately enhance digital workforce tools, and more than 84 per cent of employees believe that this is absolutely necessary.

People analytics and digital HR is the need of the hour for aspiring human resource professionals. Skills such as basic data manipulation, data visualisation in excel, digital transformation, measurement maturity, workforce analytics, and measures in talent acquisition equip the modern HRM with the tools and techniques that help to create a industry-ready workforce. The Jigsaw Academy and the Indian Institute of Management, Indore, provide HR enthusiasts with the three-month online instructor-led people analytics and digital HR programme that enables learners to master advanced techniques to produce insights based on people-centric data.



(The writer is Co-founder & CEO, Jigsaw Academy.)