Storytelling is nothing without a proper theory – here’s why

Storytelling is rightly hailed as a must-have competence in people analytics. In my own competency model, it is one of the six core competencies any analytics team must have. Other models do the same. Compelling arguments are being made about the value of good storytelling. In other words; master it or beat it. So don’tContinue reading “Storytelling is nothing without a proper theory – here’s why”

Six must-have competencies in a world-class analytics team

Succeeding with workforce analytics is difficult. It requires a mix of skills not found in one person only, and you should not assume, that you can do it on your own. We are all decent at most things but really only good in a few. You should therefore assemble a team, which has a multipleContinue reading “Six must-have competencies in a world-class analytics team”

Cost and value – the difference that makes a successful workforce analytics function

My second take-away from the workforce analytics case-studies and conferences I have heard, attended and experience over the last year is what I call the confusion of cost savings and value creation.  While the good news is that we are starting to deliver, my warning would be, that we should be careful not to deliverContinue reading “Cost and value – the difference that makes a successful workforce analytics function”

Prediction: The HR specialist will be back

The HR Partner role (the HR generalist) is very much in vogue.  Everywhere I look (here in Northern Europe) this model is being applied. In fact, over the last five years the title “HR Partner” has probably received a bit of a mini-revival again. It is cool to be a HR Partner theses days. TheContinue reading “Prediction: The HR specialist will be back”

The number one problem with ROI in HR (and other such metrics)

I am convinced that ROI can offer significant value to HR. ROI can make HR better by making better investment decisions and improve evaluation of activities. Also ROI can show how HR adds shareholder value. In theory at least. Because ROI has a lot of problems. The number one problem is that ROI calculations areContinue reading “The number one problem with ROI in HR (and other such metrics)”

Be careful with the sports metaphor – also in HR

Leading a company or managing a team in an organization is not like coaching a soccer or a basketball team. It’s not. There are some similarities – such as how to motivate, coach, prepare and celebrate successes – but even in those cases you should be careful. The metaphor of sports can limit you asContinue reading “Be careful with the sports metaphor – also in HR”

3 alternatives to ROI in HR – Part 3

ROI is used more and more in HR when justifying or evaluating HR projects. But it has at the same time come under a lot of criticism for being too difficult to use in HR. The first alternative I suggested was another financial ratio – CROCI – which may be better due to its focus onContinue reading “3 alternatives to ROI in HR – Part 3”

3 alternatives to ROI in HR – Part 2

In this series , I look at alternatives to ROI in HR. I was asked to come up with alternatives since ROI is sometimes met with some resistance. In my last post, I argued that CROCI is an excellent alternative to ROI if you are looking for an even better financial ratio. It is betterContinue reading “3 alternatives to ROI in HR – Part 2”

HR analytics should combat illusory correlation with a bit of fun

When I see people describe HR analytics as people who are “just collecting data”, I often wonder if they know how wrong they are. HR analytics have tremendous amount of power – perhaps more than it realizes. It’s real power lies not in obtaining data or facts and passing it on. Instead, the real powerContinue reading “HR analytics should combat illusory correlation with a bit of fun”

HR should measure against the pacebo effect – you will be surprised…

I believe HR can learn a lot from psychology – not just in terms of how to develop and manage people but also how to think about its own existence, which activities to do and approach to take. For example, I have recently argued that the concept of cognitive dissonance could make us understand whyContinue reading “HR should measure against the pacebo effect – you will be surprised…”

HR analytics: Don’t think for a minute that data or information change behavior. Knowledge does.

HR analytics promise to give HR better data so they can make better decisions. And who would disagree? If you don’t know your levels of, say, talent turnover, how do you know if you have a problem, which of your current programs work and which don’t etc. In other words, with no or poor dataContinue reading “HR analytics: Don’t think for a minute that data or information change behavior. Knowledge does.”

HR KPIs: The good, the bad and the ugly

This week I have had meetings with two HR executives about their HR KPIs (Key Performance Indicators).  They both complained about two things I hear a lot; 1) we have too many and 2) they are not very good. While recognising that they have too many they both found it hard to actually get ridContinue reading “HR KPIs: The good, the bad and the ugly”

5 myths about the hardest thing when measuring ROI on HR

Measuring ROI on HR is not difficult. In fact, with some training anyone can master this. If you know how to do it right, it is really all about planning, persistence and probabilities. However, at (at least) one point during the process, you will be left with a question which goes something like this: “HowContinue reading “5 myths about the hardest thing when measuring ROI on HR”

The ultimate definition of Human Capital

If you Google “definition of Human Capital” you will be surprised and overwhelmed. It is a vast and contradictory  amount of definitions you will get. And frankly not very helpful as they don’t explain exactly what it is. For example, if you look at Wikipedia under ‘Human Capital Management’ you will find that it redirectsContinue reading “The ultimate definition of Human Capital”

The most important argument for Human Capital ROI

I sometimes get asked; why measure Human Capital ROI? This is simple; to be more efficient and more effective and ultimately to add more value. Unlike any other asset, people have the potential to add value on an exponential scale. For HR to optimise its value creation, it must master two things: doing the rightContinue reading “The most important argument for Human Capital ROI”

The costliest mistake you can make in Talent Management

Talent Management is difficult to get right. Let’s be sure about that. In fact, most talent programs have a negative ROI if properly measured. However, there is one mistake you should avoid at all costs as it will lead to high turnover of talents (and a negative return on investment). That mistake is not havingContinue reading “The costliest mistake you can make in Talent Management”

Why Talent Management no longer matters

Since McKinsey in 1998 published their article on “The War For Talents” it has been widely accepted that Talent Management should be a key priority for any HR department. Actually, make that for any top management team in the world. Indeed when surveyed “Talent Management” or “Attracting the right talent” always come up as oneContinue reading “Why Talent Management no longer matters”

5 ways to improve the ROI on Talent Management

Lets face it – most companies don’t measure ROI on their Talent Management programs. Perhaps this is because they don’t know how to, that they know the result will be scary (very negative) or just because they don’t believe in measuring HR. For whatever reason, they are starting from way behind the starting line. ROIContinue reading “5 ways to improve the ROI on Talent Management”

Why most succession plans don’t add any value

At its very core, the problem is that most succession plans are never used. And if not used, it is hardly a controversial to say, that they don’t add value. Many large international companies spend much time and resources on developing a complete success planning program, which intends to identify a person who will takeContinue reading “Why most succession plans don’t add any value”

Do talents or systems make the difference?

What makes the difference; talents or systems? If you take, say, a great soccer player like Lionel Messi and put him into an inferior team will he do well and make a difference to that team or is it the fact that he plays for Barcelona that what makes him great? This question – formulatedContinue reading “Do talents or systems make the difference?”

Human Capital move stock prices

I went to a very interesting event in London a few weeks ago. It was arranged by Human Potential Accounting and the event was titled “The Future of Investment: Human Capital”. A panel composed of people from different parts of the investment community – private equity, regulators, pension funds, investment banks etc. – discussed howContinue reading “Human Capital move stock prices”

Should Human Capital be fully capitalized on the Balance Sheet?

Book value accounts for about 20% of a company’s market value today. The rest – 80% – is down to immaterial ‘assets’. This makes valuing companies very difficult indeed. There are many good reasons why book value always will be lower than market value. However one way to close this gap – and thereby makingContinue reading “Should Human Capital be fully capitalized on the Balance Sheet?”

ROI is a dangerous tool – here is how to use it

ROI (Return On Investment) has become the tool which HR increasingly use to show that they are adding value to the company’s bottom line. And rightly so. HR has the potential to create a lot of value to a company – also Shareholder Value. And this value  should be shown and highlighted. ROI is aContinue reading “ROI is a dangerous tool – here is how to use it”

Wrong assumptions lead to bad decisions

Human Capital is the ‘hard’ side of Human Resources. It is about making strategic decisions, measuring the impact and basing decisions upon ‘objective’ and measureable data. One of the most important things for a Human Capital Manager is therefore to get quality data. Without that you cannot make good decisions. Daryl Morey writes on HBR’sContinue reading “Wrong assumptions lead to bad decisions”

Five popular myths about Talent Management

To produce a value-added Talent Management program you need to understand – and avoid the pitfalls of – five popular myths about talents: 1) Talents are easy to identify. Talent are rarely in the position they ought to be in or in a position which reflects their potential. Identifying an organization’s talents require a rigorousContinue reading “Five popular myths about Talent Management”

3 reasons why not to measure retrospectively

It is tempting to measure retrospectively – but try to stay away from it. You may have just held a course or completed a successful leadership training program. Or you are finding that your talent management program is being well received. Now you want to show that it added value to the business by measuringContinue reading “3 reasons why not to measure retrospectively”

Human Capital in Financial Statements

Looking through financial statements today it is clear that there is a huge gap between what companies say are their most important asset – people – and what they report in their financial statement – tangible assets, products etc. Financial regulators – such as SEC and FSA – as well as stock exchanges are notContinue reading “Human Capital in Financial Statements”

Measuring HR is a mean – not an end!

I was speaking with an executive HR person the other day. He told me that one of the things he measured – and which was a KPI for him – was the response rate for the semi-annual employee satisfaction survey. His target was 90%. At the time when I spoke with him the response rateContinue reading “Measuring HR is a mean – not an end!”

Leadership in bad times – lessons for HR

I was reading a study of group behavior of baboons (which we humans share 99% of our gen-material with). The study was looking into how often the males in the group was looking at the Alpha-Male (the leader) for clues as to how to act. The average was once every 30 seconds. The interesting thingContinue reading “Leadership in bad times – lessons for HR”

Welcome to my blog on Human Capital Management

Welcome to my blog about Human Capital Management – something I am passionate about. What is Human Capital? Other words could be; “The strategic framework for HR”, “The business focused HR”, “Putting value on people and competencies” or simply “Strategic HR”. I don’t really care about what it is called or what the right definitionContinue reading “Welcome to my blog on Human Capital Management”