28 Mar, 2012

Businesses Seek a Bigger Picture

A recent survey has found that 86 percent of businesses globally have a process to capture talent analytics data but less than half indicated they used the information to make informed business decisions. These findings are revealed in SHL’s annual Global Assessment Trends Report 2012. This highlights the need for organisations to convert their people intelligence into meaningful, quantifiable metrics helping them make people decisions that will translate into improved business performance. Talent analytics is a new entry to the trends report this year and is now a top three priority for the HR department.

“Our research has shown that businesses want to understand the bigger picture about the people in their workforce. This goes far beyond productivity: it’s a question of understanding what makes employees tick, how to get the best performance from each individual and keeping them engaged,” said David Leigh, CEO of SHL. “The potential of talent analytics has now been recognised by businesses but there are still lessons to be learnt about capturing meaningful data that can be used to inform critical business decisions.”

The survey was completed by 481 HR professionals worldwide across a variety of industry sectors and outlines key trends and insights into talent assessment practices year on year and challenges facing businesses in 2012. The report revealed a further three key findings:

Behaviour prediction is key

3 out of 5 of the most popular pre-hire assessment types favoured by HR professionals are behavioural predictors suggesting employers want a more forward-thinking, comprehensive view of their employees. ‘Personality tests’ moved up to second place on the rankings list this year and job fit and situational judgement tests were also placed in the top five. The data implies that employers are now not only focused on a candidate’s knowledge and skills, but require a well-rounded view of their employees and how they will react and behave in the future.

Social media helping to provide a bigger picture of candidates

The survey’s findings also suggest that the growing need for employers to have a full view of their candidates is also reflected in social media trends. More companies are finding new ways to use social media for recruiting and hiring, and acceptance for this usage has increased – with perceptions of it being an effective tool for recruiting candidates growing 10 percentage points from last year. The research indicates that the highest growth of social media information sought after by employers is looking for a candidate’s hobbies and interests, current activities as well as group affiliations and recommendations from others.

Engagement a top priority for businesses

Engagement and retention of staff are found to be high on the HR agenda this year, with over 56 percent of respondents citing it as their top priority in 2012. However, SHL’s research also found that over a third of companies (39{6060b2de664e4eaa3e7b7e86961ce2c4bbd7a29b6c1097abf8257a4e5b07383e}) don’t have formal processes in place to engage or keep their staff within the company. Moreover, in spite of growing emphasis on internal talent for hiring, data from the Trends Report indicates that only one third of HR professionals (36 percent) viewed career development as a top priority and even fewer stated this as a successful employee retention strategy. Interest in career development has in fact dropped year on year leading to speculation that companies are giving up on these strategies.

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