Data; The Employee

It is Project Social Time again. This time my partners Dave and Laura suggested blogging about the role of data in your business. The question asked,โ€œWhat role does HR data play in your business? What role would you like data to play in HR?โ€ Laura wants to hold HR Data more accountable. And it seems Dave and I are on the same page through the eyes of manufacturing. He wants to measure happiness! Nice.

As a business owner I see this in several directions. And I am by no means an expert in data tracking systems for HR. I am very familiar with the big players like Oracle or Sage Abra, or the on-the-cheap open source like WayPoint or components of And I am in no way an authority as to whether any of these systems would ultimately satisfy my functional wish list. We are a small company. Future planning, dreaming about company growth management is my point of view. I have never used a robust HRMS. I see data as an employee depending on the data’s function, just as my websites are like a retail staff and Google pay per click is a sales department. And they should all work together.

It is All About My Certificate Frame Products

So why did I jump in to this Project Social theme? I hope my perspective might generate conversation about what is and what could be in the HR Tech space. I immediately think about modules that cross over into marketing or assembly or other business efficiencies. We are not just punching a clock anymore. As a manufacturing company I want to know which employee needs extra training because the box they packed was the incorrect order color or it was broken in shipment. To correct human error and help deliver a better, more cost effective product to my customer is the obvious need.โ€ But, there is no human in that tracking.ย  Swiping bar codes at an assembly point and numerical spreadsheets really make me want to throw up in my mouth a bit. My business partner husband loves it.

Did Someone Say Key Words?

Where I circle back is in a good old fashion interview notation. We have a conversation about why mistakes were made, asking employees how they feel a change to the process could avoid mistakes. This is my management style. One-on-one conversation with a component of problem solving helps the employee own their role and contribute to the process. This is key for us. So I wonder if there is a system that could incorporate key word analysis for a notation module? This could help when several managers make notations on several employees and the keyword match would show a pattern of behavior or suggested solutions from a problem-solving conversation.

It is Business Analysis, Not Just HR Analysis

Ultimately as a business owner I want an integrated system that can cross data into all departments. HR is an overlay and should touch everything from accounting to marketing to warehouse/assembly then ultimately my customer as a strategic player. Humans operate in these departments right? Humans are my customer. Data is stagnant until given the role to break out and be more dynamic. Data can be a valuable virtual employee helping us see connections in human capital management. For me it is not just about job performance, turnover, labor costs and retention. It is about understanding the integration of my employees into the process of making a great product, and then ultimately linking that data to my customers needs. Now if an HRMS could just make bacon, I might buy one tomorrow.

Data photo courtesy of


2 Responses

  1. chris Says:

    Workforce analytics is everywhere. Someone recently told me that they had a project to determine why they were having turnover problems. I thought, Workforce analytics, is there any collected data from current employees or the recently departed ones. My point, systems or not you need the information and depending upon your organization’s size should determine what you use to gather it.

  2. Dave "theHRCzar" Ryan Says:

    Nice piece Lyn. I love the part about key word searches. My problem there would be getting the supervisors to write a comprehensive enough evaluation to include all of the keywords so they might be compared and tracked.

    Your closing point is well taken about being a business partner. I feel I have always done this and understood this concept, but I know there are many HR practitioners who live in their own little bubble.

    Another great Project Social effort! ๐Ÿ™‚

Leave a Comment

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.