KPMG UK partner Robert Bolton gave a fascinating insight into how professional service companies can help HR understand the changing business landscape. From how aggressive incentivisation brings down overall performance to the trend for removing employee performance rating scales, Bolton looked at how HR can affect business success.
One of his key themes was how to decode the HR dilemma – namely, how HR can show value in the C-suite. “HR wants to be a value driver at the top table instead of a back office function, but the way we’ve sought to do this is through initiatives which have little evidence behind them,” said Bolton.
According to Bolton, data and analytics are key to transitioning to an evidence-based approach to HR, but too many organisations don’t understand how to implement them.
“The most important skill for HR is to frame great questions. The best data analysis comes from developing hypotheses so you know what you want to find out and you get the best from your data,” he said.
Utilising evidence-based HR allows us to show directly where HR can add to a business’ value chain and also perform detailed analysis of trends and prediction of future problems, but too many HR professionals are rely on old benchmarks and best practices, which may not apply to their organisation.
“Data can set us free, so please have a go,” he concluded.