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People Analytics: The Good and The Bad

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people analytics, disadvantages

People Analytics: What are the Disadvantages?

People Analytics: is it all it’s cracked up to be or are there disadvantages? It’s been a gradual and rather slow adoption of people analytics. Some companies have embraced it while others are not sure whether they actually need it or perhaps don’t want to cross that line just yet. One can’t blame them. It’s a tricky thing, people analytics, especially if not managed correctly. Let’s take a quick unbiased, objective look at both sides of the coin and how it can help your organization. 


If you’re a medium to large company you might reap most of the benefits out of people analytics. Once you have identified all the data points you’d like to collect for your human capital, whether it be for DEI, Employee engagement, wellbeing, performance or whatever you’re trying to measure it gives you a clear evidence-based picture of the status of your human capital. So if you need to do an appraisal, for example, you can go back to the data and find the evidence of what you’re looking for. This is really helpful for larger enterprises as it might not be so easy for HR to keep up with every single employee all the time. It helps you to compare data from previous years to analyze where there’s been improvement or where something is lagging. It can also give you the reasons why it has improved or deteriorated and help you set the targets for the future. Whichever targets it might be for your organization. There’s much to be praised about people analytics but nothing is without its drawback. 


If not managed correctly, it could lead to a lot of unhappy employees. For instance, before embarking on capturing these data points, it has to be openly discussed with staff and inform them what data will be collected and how the information will be collected and assure them that their privacy is of the utmost importance. Companies also have to guard against treating people as if they’re just a profile with a set of data. Humans are far more complex than that. HR shouldn’t get too comfortable just pulling up a spread sheet on screen and going with that information. There has to be a balance between going with the evidence-based data and having an actual relationship with employees. This is often the drawback with AI and tech and as HR professionals we need to guard against that. It’s easy to get absorbed and mesmerized by the capabilities of technology.

So there’s a lot of good in people analytics as long as it is managed correctly and as long employees are informed. Need to know more? Get in touch

WHP Consulting