Welcome to episode 35 of the Rethink HR podcast, brought to you by bettHR.
In today’s episode, I share seven signs that it may be time for you to reboot or rethink your HR metrics strategy (including if you even have one or need one!). With the idea of having meaningful HR metrics and analytics to share with your organization.
Here are the seven signs I shared, so you can easily identify if it’s time to take another look at your own HR metrics strategy:
- Metrics, what metrics?
- You don’t have a consistent HR Dashboard
- Your “Dashboard” consists only of graphs and charts
- You only track the “traditional” things like retention, turnover, engagement
- The leaders in other departments never comment on or ask questions about your dashboard
- You don’t refer to your dashboard when making HR project decisions
- Your numbers are just that… numbers
If you want to get the free guide to help you get started with HR metrics, click the image below.
Melissa Anzman (00:00): The goal of your HR metrics strategy is to engage the rest of the organization with HR, to bring them into the conversation, showing the importance of the activities and projects that you are executing. I'm Melissa Anzman. An HR practitioner turned CEO of a thriving employee experience company, but it wasn't all that long ago that I worked as an HR business partner responsible for increasing employee engagement at companies nationwide. And I struggled to move the needle, even after trying everything under the sun. Fast-forward past many failed tactics and lessons learned, and you'll see how I've been able to crack the code and replicated at companies of all sizes for creating true engagement and doing HR work that matters work that changes the lives of leaders, HR professionals, and employees. By focusing on the employee experience, I created the rethink HR podcast to give you actionable step-by-step strategies to help you make an impact.
Melissa Anzman (01:03): If you're an HR leader or one on the rise, who's looking to stop spinning your wheels, doing the same tired activities that aren't driving results, or you want to have a career. You love your in the right place. Let's get started podcasts. We're going to continue the theme about HR metrics. And I've heard from some of you that, yes, you're super excited about knowing which metrics to start with and some of the ideas previously shared, but maybe you are stuck thinking what if I already have a strategy for metrics and it's not quite working. So here are some signs for you to pay attention to today. If you're just not sure if you're on the right path with your HR metrics, you're still not certain where to start, or you're not sure that your boss needs the HR metrics. So these are things that come up all of the time that are just signs for you to start paying attention to metrics.
Melissa Anzman (02:06): And even after listening to this, if you're like, that's cool, I fit one of the seven or five of the seven, or maybe all of the seven. And you're still not sure what to do. Don't worry. We're going to keep uncovering how to implement metrics over the next food podcast. So whether or not you are deep involved in HR metrics, or perhaps it's the first time you're hearing about it, or maybe you've heard about it. And it's the first time it's come to your, um, the front of your attention list. If any of us have that right now. But I want you to understand that metrics is something that you should pay attention to and you have to reboot your strategy every now and then kind of like what we have to do for all of the other things we do in HR. And so here are some signs for you to pay attention to.
Melissa Anzman (02:54): It's just not on the right track. So the first is metrics metrics. So maybe you're currently not tracking any metrics on a consistent basis, or perhaps you're not doing them at all, or maybe it's been relegated to just analysts or you worry about other things, or you don't really know what they are, or maybe it's just not front of mind. So it is no longer acceptable for an HR organization at a company of any size, whether you're an HR department of one or 100 or a thousand to not be using the available data points, to create quantitative measures for you to increase your HR credibility. That is what it does. It also showcases the ROI of what we do in HR to our senior leaders, to other people on the C-suite staff that are not HR. And it really helps us focus in a sort of fire drill world that is even more fire drill.
Melissa Anzman (03:54): That's a new word now than ever before, because it gives us real quantitative measures. And it's the HR metrics is the easiest way for you to prove your own worth to the organization, as well as creating HR to be seen as the profit center that you are instead of a profit taker. And it's not that complicated to get started, but if you're not already tracking your metrics, I want you to do not pass go. I want you to take this as assigned to say, okay, let's just track three, let's start small and let's do it. Now. The next sign for you to reboot your strategy is you don't have a consistent HR dashboard. So I remember goodness, maybe 10 years back now, totally dating myself. When I first implemented an HR dashboard at a company that I was working at. And since it wasn't a huge priority for the organization, HR metrics wasn't really on their radar.
Melissa Anzman (04:55): It had become a really important to me because that was how I increased engagement, was looking at the metrics. But the dashboard was something that just continually got dropped off the list of things to get done every month by everyone else, by, you know, the senior leaders in HR, by our associates in HR, it was just the thing that didn't happen. And when the dashboard came out, well, it came out when it could. And it wasn't really on a reliable schedule and it wasn't really helpful. So if right now your HR dashboard, which really is one glance, a one spot for you to share your HR metrics. If it is published on a Willy nilly basis, it is doing more harm than good for your HR metric strategy and more importantly, your HR credibility. So when you establish a new tools, such as a dashboard, it sets expectations to the rest of the organization and helps them learn what is important for your team and how to look at the bigger picture of HR.
Melissa Anzman (06:06): And when you provide that type of detail one month, but not the next you're reinforcing, not only that, the information you're sharing isn't important, but that you also have to continually reteach your organization, how to use an interact the dashboard over and over again. And that is not fun for anyone. So if you have an HR dashboard, amazing, but make sure that it's also going out consistently and in a consistent format. So you're not constantly having to recreate the wheel. If those things aren't true. If you have an HR dashboard and it's going out when you get to it, or you're trying out new designs for it, I want you to really get on a consistent schedule and a consistent design so that you can do a teach once and have it be a thing that occurs and relied upon going forward from here. The next sign is that perhaps that HR dashboard that you've created consists of only graphs and charts.
Melissa Anzman (07:13): So maybe you're still at phase one of our HR metric strategy of just doing those three metrics of just getting started. That is totally okay. And I want to celebrate that you are there. How ever, if you are only using graphs and charts in your dashboard, it is a clear sign that you need to step up your game. And here's what I usually see. And it makes me giggle every time because it's so unhelpful. And if you ever see me speak live, I like to show visuals. And the visualize show is one of a dashboard from, I believe it's Oracle. I'm not picking on them. I'm just sort of using that for reference from all of you out there. Um, so whether it's Oracle or a Workday dashboard of just like lots of pie charts and bar graphs and all the information with lots of numbers.
Melissa Anzman (08:05): And that is how we tend to present our dashboard in this thing that either we get from our HRA assistant, which is a good place for us to mine data, but we either get that. And then we just share it, or we create something that is very, uh, graph. And chardy now here's the thing. Your HR dashboard has to be relevant and understandable, and it should have many stories included. And this is really the game changer for those who work with me on HR metrics. Because I believe in storytelling for HR, that is something that I have been teaching forever. And this is where it comes into play for HR metrics. You're going to say, but a story, what does that really mean? We're not making up stories, but when you think about sharing your HR metrics and information, particularly in a dashboard, it needs to be presented in a way that anyone in the organization can take a look at your dashboard and clearly understand why the information you've shared is critical to the company's success and what it actually means.
Melissa Anzman (09:18): So simply plotting points on a chart or sharing numbers does not do this. It leads, uh, leaves a lot of the interpretation up to the reader, which creates biases, confusion, and so much more. Now there are various ways to include stories sometimes with words sometimes with how you create your graphics. Um, sometimes it's with where you emphasize and actually even what metric you share. But essentially if you're only plotting numbers and showing them your not providing any value, like full stop. And I know that crushes your heart, I know that you think it's so exciting to have a plug and play type a visual solution from your HRIF that looks like a chart and looks like a graph and looks amazing. But by not providing any stories around it, by not having your metrics be meaningful, they're not providing any value. So the whole point about your dashboard is to tell consistent stories that are important to the company. So if yours now is only graphs and charts and lots of charts and lots of bar graphs and lots of numbers, it is not being as helpful as it can be. You didn't get into HR crunch,
Melissa Anzman (10:41): But there's got to be some way for you to show the results of your hard work and figure out what's really working for your company and spatially. Right now, every HR professional today has to be able to identify what to track, how to quantify it and what to do with the results at better. We want HR pros to be able to leverage HR metrics, to do more great work for their people. Our goal is to help you track the right things in the right way, without relying on out of touch outsourcing or a one size fits all solution, HR metrics, 101 is designed to help you do just that it's a four week online course that introduces you to HR metrics, how to choose the right ones for you to track in your current role, how to turn numbers into stories and build a business case around what you discovered when you know your metrics, you can focus time on the work that matters by having a clear roadmap for your priorities. You can significantly increase your results across the board by boosting your and forgetting the days when you felt like you were throwing spaghetti against the wall. And you'll instantly raise your authority and profile at work, meaning more great opportunities will come your way to find out if HR metrics 101 can help you meet your goals and accel in your role in HR text: bettHR to - 44222.
Melissa Anzman (12:21): The next sign that you may need a reboot is that you're only tracking the so-called traditional metrics, things like retention, turnover, and engagement. And this is one of the biggest indicators that it's time to reboot your strategy, because if you're only tracking those things that you're tracking five years ago or 10 years ago, or, you know, what have you, because they made the top five things you need to track on the Sherm website, which is a real thing, and makes me cringe every time you need to reboot your strategy because an effective HR metrics strategy is one that is directly tied to your company's annual goals, which means it's plausible that the metrics that are important for you to track that your company needs to know can be updated on an annual basis. That is fair. That doesn't mean we stopped tracking things that are still important, like retention or toner, turnover, or engagement.
Melissa Anzman (13:22): If those are the things that are important, but we need to make sure that what we are tracking, what we have our eye on for HR metrics is actually valuable to our company. Now, there may be some metrics that you track to see consistency over time, such as retention rates, but you should always be updating new metrics based on what your company is telling you is important and what they want to accomplish and what they value within that year. Because we always want to keep the employee experience, framework. Those things that are super important to the company for our employee success, which means our company's success at the front of mind, you need to be able to pull the thread from your HR metrics, to the company, success, showing that direct correlation through what you're tracking, otherwise, your metrics that you are sharing are absolutely meaningless.
Melissa Anzman (14:19): They're just another number. And what we don't want to do is we don't want to create numbers for numbers sake. We want to share meaningful HR metrics to those in HR and also our employees outside of HR. The next sign that you need a little bit more focus is that the leaders in other departments never comment or ask questions about your HR dashboard or about the metrics that you are sharing. I call this sort of the kiss of death. If other leaders not asking you questions about your dashboard or commenting on how helpful or useful it is, you are basically creating something in vain. The goal of your HR metric strategy is to engage the rest of the organization with HR, to bring them into the conversation, showing the importance of the activities and projects that you are executing. That is our goal. Now, if they are not caring about the information that you are providing, we are failing at that goal.
Melissa Anzman (15:28): Now I want to also say if on the other hand, your questions are along the lines of what does this mean, or what can I do with this? Or how should I be using this type of information? That's a clear indication that your dashboard isn't clear and you are not telling meaningful, compelling stories with your data. So you need to keep testing and tweaking with your dashboard until you're sure that you're providing meaningful information through your metrics and insights that are important to leaders outside of HR. And to do this, it's quite easy. You ask them, what do you want to know? How can we support UNHR that may in a way that makes most sense, things like that and say, Hey, you know, here is a metric. How are you interpreting this? Just to see where they're going. So you understand how to tell the right actual story.
Melissa Anzman (16:20): Number six is that you don't refer to your dashboard when making HR projects decisions. So when you look at things like how, how does your HR department, um, make budget, spend decisions or say yes or no to a project. I want you to really understand how your HR metrics and maybe your dashboard really plays into this. Do you discuss the needs of the organization alone and then execute? Do you refer to any of your metrics in your dashboard before moving forward or something else? How are you using these quantitative measures to make meaningful? Most HR director apartments make decisions the way that they have been doing that for years, a leader with influence within the organization starts grumbling about something. And HR reacts without question, without a plan without evaluating data, without really saying, how does this fit into our employee experience framework? How does this fit into our company goals?
Melissa Anzman (17:25): How is this good use of HR being a profit center and being worth our time? If you are not looking at your dashboard or your metrics or your engagement numbers or any available data, when you are doing this, you are making bad decisions for the company. Now, I know it's easier to be reactive and deliver what you're hearing is needed. And he know we all want to please senior leaders because we are people pleasers, maybe not personally, but as a department, we are people-pleasers, that's kind of the position we've been put, but that's not being strategic and you're not letting the available metrics do the work for you. And this is really important because it helps us make only the right decisions for our own time, but more importantly for the company's time and money and spend as well. So we're just, can't make decisions on a dime.
Melissa Anzman (18:25): We have to bring in those things that we have such as our HR metrics, the storytelling around it, to help us indicate what we should do, how we should move forward. What makes the most sense versus going down the path of a senior leader, who's sort of a grumbler and we start this project that then gets into our annual cadence, and we have no idea why and all these things. So my point here is regardless of how these ideas are coming to light, whether it's a leader or someone on your team or an employee suggestion box, we just have to look at our HR metrics or a dashboard to understand if it makes sense for us to move forward. And finally, if your numbers are just that numbers, then we haven't really been applying a true or working HR metric strategy. And this is like probably the hidden indicator, right?
Melissa Anzman (19:25): That it's not working because you feel like it is on the surface. You're doing the necessary work. You're gathering the data. You're compiling numbers. You are creating sort of, you know, the percentages or those, those regular HR metrics, but you stop there. So metrics is not about the numbers. And I mentioned this earlier, when I introduced storytelling, but metrics is really about understanding what those numbers actually mean. I mean, it's about taking it metrics from the numbers and turning them into analytics, which is really just helping us share and use the information to influence your HR strategy through a story. If you don't understand what the metrics are telling you, the trends they are in veiling, the gaps they are showing, sharing, and showing the key points to improve performance and all of those things, you may not as well have metrics at all, because it's missing the whole point metrics, not about the numbers, they're about what they are sharing for us. They're what they're uncovering there. This story that we are being told by our employees, by our actions and activities. And so if you're still just focused on HR metrics, being the numbers, then we have to get you to the story. Part of turning those metrics into analytics, which is just the story behind it, having meaningful value.
Melissa Anzman (20:59): Thank you so much for tuning in for this episode of the rethink HR podcast. For more information, including show notes and resources, please go to RethinkHRPodcast.com/35.
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