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  • Sally Taher

If You Can't Measure It, You Can't Manage it: What's The Point of Investing in Human Cap

Let's start with one of Steve Jobs's best quotes:

Lot of people in our industry haven't had very diverse experiences. So they don't have enough dots to connect, and they end up with very linear solutions without a broad perspective on the problem. The broader one's understanding of the human experience, the better design we will have.

Yes, Connecting The Dots! It means the ability to find a common thread that binds the issues, concepts and resources in our organisation. Helping business finding and allocating people without knowing how to measure the business impact is a common example of creating the dots, but not connecting.

Let's ask ourselves...

  • How can we make sure that we have placed the right people with the right skills and motivation to achieve our company's business goals?

  • How can we measure the business impact of employee learning and development? Depending on the type of training and function, it may lead to new revenue generation such as increased sales or a higher success rate in winning pitches.

  • In the final analysis, how can we convince our senior leaders that all employee engagement activities generate positive ROI, which reflects the organisation's acceptable level of payback period?

  • Do we apply backtesting (analytical method to historical data) to see how accurately our HR strategy would have predicted actual business results? The notion is that an HR strategy that would have worked poorly in the past will probably work poorly in the future, and vice versa.

if you can't measure it, you can't manage it

And if you can't measure or manage it, we may well ask ourself exactly what the point is in investing in human capital. No matter how well-thought-out or innovative our strategic human resource planning and talent development program; from onboarding and performance coaching to training and mentoring; might be, if we don’t know how to measure the business impact, both at employee level and business level, we would never be able to achieve excellence, to maintain competitive advantage and to see the value in aligning agendas toward a common goal.

Connecting The Dots: The Ultimate Power of Human Resource

  1. Know the business. We must work closely with an organisation’s senior business leaders in order to develop an HR agenda that closely supports the overall aims of the organisation.

  2. Know the employee value. We should know how to measure the financial value and future worth of employee.

  3. Know the strategic use of analytics in talent management. We should know how to use data, numbers and statistics to show trends in people management and employee engagement to define the input and measure the output in order to align HR strategic plan with business goals.

The key is to set realistic measurable HR goals that can be directly attributable.

The end.

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