Potential of HR analytics still underused by many companies

Results of the HR Barometer 2018

The Belgian human resources departments are focused on attracting, developing and motivating talent once again this year. Recruitment and selection are number one here, followed by leadership development and talent management. Those are the results from the fourth annual HR Barometer study by HR consultancy firm Hudson and Vlerick Business School. HR analytics, however, has not really established itself yet. Although companies collect lots of data, those responsible for HR indicate that they are often not proficient enough in analysing it.

HR data – measure or also analyse?

At the request of last year’s respondents, the focus of the HR Barometer 2018 is on HR analytics. The most obvious personal data, such as information about absence, progress, staff planning and performance data etc. is collected by 95% of the participating organisations.

Although there is plenty of HR data available, 75% of the participating organisations only uses the data for ‘measurements’ and not for analytical purposes. Only 25% takes it a step further and analyses the information. They are looking for connections to be able to make better forecasts and to take more decisions based on facts and conclusions,” says Ellen Volckaert, R&D Manager at Hudson. “Organisations that perform further analysis can use it to achieve a greater impact on the business results, such as increasing productivity and quality. That could increase the relevance of HR.”  

The impact of GDPR

Another notable observation is that less than half of the participating organisations regularly uses Big Data Analytics. Only a third of the participating organisations thinks that GDPR will have a negative effect on data analysis in the future. And 9.7% even expect a positive impact. Of the HR departments, 94% indicate they are ready for the new GDPR legislation.

Most significant shift:  the importance of agility

This year, agility, cultural change and employer branding are seen as the three most important domains for improvements. Cultural change was also one of the working points last year, while employer branding was given lower priority. Considering the ‘war for talent’ is becoming increasingly prominent, the attention paid to employer branding has clearly grown in the past 12 months.

Dirk Buyens, Professor of Human Resources Management at Vlerick Business School: “It is clear that HR directors are acknowledging the increasing importance of agile attitudes and competencies in the rapidly changing business environment. Even more so, agility is the subject that HR professionals want to learn more about. That is why the HR Barometer 2019 will focus on a detailed survey around agility.”

About the HR Barometer

The HR Barometer falls within the collaboration between the HR consultancy firm Hudson and Vlerick Business School. The two have had a strong partnership for years with a focus on innovation in HR, knowledge sharing and exchange and on network initiatives within the broad landscape of HR. Ellen Volckaert, Manager within the Hudson Research & Development department and Professor Dirk Buyens, Head of the HRM Centre at Vlerick Business School, have written this report together. They surveyed those responsible for HR at the BEL 20 and the 200 largest Belgian businesses in terms of employee numbers. Sixty-two organisations, who together represent around 258,000 Belgian employees, took part in the study.  

About Hudson
Hudson is a HR consultancy firm with over 35 years of experience. Their most important mission is supporting organisations in their growth processes by focusing on their staff. Whether regarding recruitment, development, coaching or rewards, the HR experts use their expertise every day to support their customers in their ambitions. Hudson is the ideal HR partner for the private and public sector as well as for start-ups, SMEs and multinationals.

& Rankings

Equis Association of MBAs AACSB Financial Times