2021 Predictions Series – Analytics | Deloitte US has been saved
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We don’t have to remind you that uncertainty has been the biggest theme of 2020. As organizations strive to emerge from this challenging environment, they are constantly seeking information to guide better actions and decisions. And despite the setbacks, their willingness to pursue workforce insights has not waned: Deloitte’s 2020 High-Impact People Analytics study finds 52 percent of surveyed companies plan to invest in tools for people-data collection and analysis within the next 12 months.1 But how can organizations successfully—and ethically—put that data to use?
In 2021, we predict organizations will continue to place a spotlight on people analytics to emerge from the impacts of the global pandemic—and find that traditional HR roles may not be enough. Through human-related insights, organizations will open new HR roles to help overcome the critical challenges they are facing.
Our research shows that only one in four organizations feel their HR functions possess “good or very good” basic data literacy.2 Despite the decade-long call to action on people analytics, only 56 percent of respondents to Deloitte’s 2020 Human Capital Trends survey say their organizations have made moderate or significant progress in people analytics in the past 10 years. People analytics remains at the center of any organization’s most challenging questions, including:
Organizations will not wait for HR to catch up on these issues—they want actionable insights now, and HR must expand to keep up.
HR is struggling to address strategic and ethical challenges beyond traditional people analytics or reporting capabilities. To meet these needs in a time of accelerated demand, several roles will emerge around the following themes:
As organizations are commonly resource-constrained, these new roles will most likely either be an expanded responsibility for existing HR analytics staff or become a responsibility of a data governance group. Organizations should weigh their current capabilities (e.g., staff skill sets, bandwidth) against potential risks (e.g., compliance violations, unethical practices) when deciding on adding or expanding new or current roles. To determine potentially new or evolved HR analytics roles for your organization:
The emergence of these new roles stem from the increase in computing power to collect, analyze, and apply people analytics in business. They also reflect the critical need for doing so to make good decisions while avoiding the potential negative consequences of allowing critical data and technology practices to evolve unchecked. These new roles will contribute to changing the way in which we manage the people side of business forever.
Beth Ann Finis - Research Manager, Human Capital Metrics
Timothy Davis - Senior Data Scientist
Zachary Toof - Manager, People Analytics Research Leader
1 High-Impact People Analytics study, Deloitte Consulting LLP, 2020.
2 “Governing workforce strategies: New questions for better results” from 2020 Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends: The social enterprise at work—Paradox as a path forward, Deloitte Consulting LLP / Erica Volini, Jeff Schwartz, Brad Denny, David Mallon, Yves Van Durme, Maren Hauptmann, Ramona Yan, and Shannon Poynton, 2020.