Recognise This! –HR should make as many decisions based upon evidence and data as finance or engineering do.

I was at HCI Human Capital Summit this week in Atlanta co-presenting with Globoforce client Quintiles.   Two great themes really flowed through the entire summit.  VUCA was the first, a military term that seems to sum up the environmental reality that so many of us HR professionals face today. VUCA it describes an environment characterised by constant Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity.

V = Volatility     U = Uncertainty     C = Complexity     A= Ambiguity

Is this your HR world?  It certainly seemed to be for a majority of attendees.  Markets are changing faster than ever, we’ve acute talent shortages in certain skills and abundance in others, innovation cycles are quicker than ever, and all around us the economic climate behaves like the weather in Ireland!  All four seasons in one day!

So what does the military do to cope with VUCA?  Data is a major component of coping within this world.  The time for soft, “gut feel” decision making is over; the time for doing certain HR projects because it’s the “right thing to do” is also over.  Know your terrain and build your evidence to prove your strategy is the right one.

Speaker after speaker I heard spoke about HR data analytics, what they proved recently, and how they plan to do much more.  This was true also of Beth Susman, my co-presenter from Quintiles.  She told the audience how important recognition had become for Quintiles, how it is now a part of their culture, and importantly how it was positively influencing a critical corporate goal around employee retention.  And she had the data to prove it!

I often say, “Never underestimate the power of a metric to signal to the organisation that something is important.”  It is how management is hard coded – manage the figures. So for recognition to become truly a part of the culture in your organisation, you need the data to prove recognition matters – recognition works to achieve your goals.

How are the data analytics of your recognition programme?