What is HR Analytics?

Today I attended a very insightful seminar which focused on HR Analytics, the new buzz word or phrase, that is being bounced around the HR market. The aim of the event, held by CIPD and UCD Smurfit Business School, was to enlighten the audience and offer an understanding as to what HR Analytics is, the benefits of implementing this in to your organisation and how to implement.

For me, I was keen to attend as more and more of our clients seem to be investing in to this area and it’s important that I’m up to scratch with the lingo and requirements when asked to help them hire HR Analysts in the future! If, like I was, you are unsure about what HR Analytics actually means then hopefully this blog will provide a brief overview for you.

According to CIPD; HR Analytics is the use of people-data in analytical processes to solve business problems. In essence, HR Analytics helps HR and their stakeholders to measure and report on key workforce concepts such as; performance, well-being and productivity and thus enables more evidence-based decision making.

Why implement HR Analytics? There are numerous reasons why companies should follow suit and consider implementing HR Analytics. Overall the main aim of it would be to improve a company’s performance and analytics can help by;


  • Improving staff retention; as analytics can uncover patterns and predict employees who are likely to resign
  • Improving hiring; algorithms allow companies to identify which traits lead to success and therefore companies can shape who they should target
  • Gaining a stronger understanding of motivation; which in turn can help develop the HR strategy and improve engagement with employees
  • Providing an accurate record of progression; companies can measure how far they’ve come or changed over time by using and tracking the HR data available to them


The above are only a number of examples that show how HR Analytics can help and as John Riordan remarked today; there is no limit to what can be measured by analytics. Mary Jo Leatham concluded the seminar by providing a step-by-step guide on how to implement HR Analytics in to your organisation and the main point I took from this is that you must have complete buy-in from the business and a clear objective before you take the first step.

I definitely feel more informed about HR Analytics but still have a long way to go. I think I’ll leave that to the professionals!

Many thanks to CIPD and UCD Smurfit Business School for hosting such a topical talk.