Make the case for HR analytics budget
Every year, HR Directors need to complete the dreaded annual budget process. On such important occasions, HR Directors typically come in mentally ready for sacrificial budget cuts. This is counter-productive as securing a sufficient budget is necessary in the firs place for HR to reinforce itself as a strategic partner of the business.
During her talk at HR Tech World Congress, Jana Brown, HR Chief Operating Officer and Business Partner at TIAA, recommended clever ways for HR to use the budget process to gain strong credibility from the executive team. Jana communicated the challenge she faced at TIAA, highlighting that 49% of the TIAA workforce had been recruited in recent years, but there were no clear metrics of new recruit effectiveness. So the HR team tried various approaches- pitching an investment in analytics & planning platform to the business, to gauge its appetite. These were the results:
Pitch 1, Strike 1: This will help us analyse our workforce!
- Metrics Catalogs
- Workforce Planning
Result: Not enough interest from the business
Pitch 2, Strike 2: Let’s focus on performance
- Performance and retention
- Employee Engagement
Result: Better – but only a 50% result: got funding for analytics, if not for planning
Pitch 3: Let’s focus on problems relevant to the business
The final pitch spoke only the language of the business. Expenses, revenues, client satisfaction, risk and brand.
- Expense – workforce was 70% of the cost base, it was outpacing revenues, margins were shrinking and accuracy of headcount data was low.
- Client satisfaction
Result: Got funding for the whole analytics and planning solution
I loved this presentation because it was clear and focused on how HR Analytics needs to be positioned to get budget support and to have real impact in the business. And for me, Jana rounded it off brilliantly by pointing out the gap between what’s on the surface and all the hard work that’s needed to land it. Her iceberg image captured the real practical details that HR then had to deal with, to land the impact of the analytics they had carried out.
HR and Org Design practitioners, these are great insights to ‘make-it-real’ when executing your transformation plan. So the next time you speak to the business, start by looking at the data and tackle problems that are most relevant to it.
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