- More firms are using data analytics, creating opportunities for innovation, a new report shows. According to the ISG Provider Lens™ Data Analytics Services & Solutions 2019 Report for the U.S., many data analytics vendors are coming out with innovative services to companies seeking "smart insights," or intelligence from their internal and external data to enhance customer service and develop new business models.
- The report showed that business intelligence platforms allow companies to extract data from multiple sources and create well-ordered data warehouses. While machine learning as a service is still evolving, the low cost makes it appealing for many large organizations. Cloud platforms from Microsoft, Amazon and Google continue to be the main providers of these services.
- The report also examined social analytics services, such as audience analytics, social listening, sentiment analysis and visual listening, which reportedly enable companies to better understand their customers.
Like most technological tools, data analytics is opening up opportunities for businesses to grow and prosper financially. For HR, data analytics is bringing about more efficiency and accuracy in hiring, training and other HR functions.
HR is now largely expected to have at least a base competency in analytics, as seen by the introduction of people analytics credentials by both the Society for Human Resource Management and the HR Certification Institute within the past year. But a 2017 survey by OutMatch noted that while 95% of HR professionals think that predictive analytics would help them advance their initiatives, only a third have access to such technology.
Esteban Herrera, partner and global leader of ISG Research, noted in a statement that analytics are helping companies determine what's working and what needs to change immediately to lower the risk of negative effects. However, employers are swinging away from complete quantification, and instead opting for a more holistic approach to data analysis — partly to prevent employees from simply gaming the system to work to a metric, Sam Stern, a principal analyst at Forrester, recently told HR Dive in an interview.
"It's harder to do this, but if we want people to delight customers and collaborate with their colleagues, we need to create an environment that it is more likely that employees will do that," he said. And such an approach will take time, he noted. Instead, employees should be empowered by the data, using insights to improve in the ways that truly matter to the business.
"That sends a profoundly different message to the employees that is applied to," Stern said.