Welcome to HR 2.0: the rise of talent analytics

The rise of talent analytics has seen data-driven insights change the game for hiring managers. But how can companies use this knowledge to strike recruitment gold?

It’s no secret that data analytics can transform the way we do business. But in human resources – an industry that has built its hiring processes on professional history, context and personal connection with a prospective hire – the potential application of large data pools have been more elusive.

A 2013 study by US talent intelligence company Evolv made a powerful case for the role of candidate data in recruitment campaigns. The study, which surveyed more than 100,000 employees, found that the tendency to job-hop – a quality lambasted by recruiters – had no impact on a candidate’s performance or their willingness to stay in a new role. It also discovered that candidates who knew three or more people working at the company were more likely to commit to the role than those who knew none, as well as that job-seekers who used third-party browsers, such as Chrome, performed better. These findings have compelling implications for both employee retention and business growth.

In many ways, talent analytics has heralded a new era of recruiting; one in which everything from demographic information, online preferences and education history, through to absenteeism reports, payroll records and annual reviews can power data-driven hiring decisions that can boost a company’s bottom line. But when it comes to mining candidate data, many organisations are content to persist with more outdated processes. A November 2013 report by Oracle found that only 48% of recruitment leaders were embracing data analytics to create competitive advantage.

While there will always be a need for the wisdom and experience of recruiters to 'read between the lines' of CVs, applications, screening calls and interviews. Embracing an analytic approach will allow the recruiter to quickly eliminate candidates not suited to roles, rank the candidates who are suited and uncover the hidden gems who remain unfound using traditional manual processes."

3 ways to use candidate data for recruiting success

Here are three simple strategies for drawing on candidate data to supercharge your recruitment campaign:

Look past the hype

The hype around big data can often create barriers for HR leaders who underestimate the way talent analytics can take the guesswork out of recruitment decisions. However, unlocking the potential of candidate data starts with understanding how data-driven insight can attract top performers, while solving HR headaches, such as employee retention and attrition.

Make accuracy your religion

When it comes to effective recruitment campaigns, metrics are king. Skipping marketing speak to build a job ad around data-driven insights can attract the perfect candidate and set the stage for smarter hiring decisions.

Let the numbers do the talking

The belief that HR is a ‘people business’ has seen many hiring managers rely on instinct, personal bias and salary expectations rather than data when hiring talent. Outsmart your competition with tactics such as segmentation, analysis and predictive analytics – these are cornerstones of data-driven decision-making that can help you win the recruitment game.

In 2014, talent analytics has shed its buzzword status to become a serious imperative for hiring leaders looking to get ahead. It’s time to dismiss your outdated assumptions about smart HR and put data-driven insights to the test.
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Antony Ugoni


Head of Marketplace Analytics

Antony Ugoni is one of Australia’s leaders in analytics and, in 2013, accepted an opportunity at SEEK to develop the candidate-to-advertisement matching capability. Antony began his career as a Biostatistician to the Alfred Group of Hospitals,...

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