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How people analytics fuels better business analytics

Jul 23, 2021| Reading time: 7min

BY ChartHop

There’s no denying the power of business intelligence, otherwise known as business analytics. Today, companies are investing in business analytics so much so that the global business intelligence market is estimated to reach $33.3 billion by 2025. That’s because establishing a data-driven culture has become a top priority for businesses, ranking 5th on a list of BI-important trends in 2017, but inching its way up to 1st place in 2021.

Despite these strides, many companies are struggling to make sense of their business data, which could be due in part to an absence of people analytics. In fact, 45% of HR decision-makers say their people data isn’t being used most effectively, while 35% say they cannot progress with data due to a lack of skills. Another 77% of executives report company-wide adoption of analytics as a major challenge.

While business analytics are important, they can’t exist in a vacuum. You can’t have business success without your people, or the data and metrics related to them. By leveraging people analytics in conjunction with business intelligence, leaders can uncover business trends, forecast changes, and cultivate actionable strategies that support the overall organization.

Three Ways People Analytics Fuel Better Business Analytics

1. Explore and Uncover People-Related Trends

Traditionally, business analytics have encompassed the financial side of the business, giving leaders and financial teams a means to monitor budget, report revenue, and determine profitability. Unfortunately, these business analytics on their own miss out on vital people analytics that can affect investment-related outcomes.

For example, business intelligence data might indicate how much a company has spent on headcount and turnover. But what exactly is driving that turnover? What’s happening at the employee-level that’s causing people to exit the organization?

People analytics harness the “why,” helping leaders explore underlying business trends that might be contributing to key cultural indicators, like turnover, engagement, performance, and professional development. A people operations platform like ChartHop helps drive better insights, allowing decision-makers and HR teams to identify trends that might otherwise fly under the radar.

So, while the business analytics platform might show a company has spent $300,000 on replacing employees, a people operations platform might show that the employees who left were all people of color, indicating that there could be serious issues with company diversity, equity, and inclusion. Or perhaps looking at people analytics uncovers that employees who left were never promoted internally, suggesting that the company should look further into professional development opportunities and trends.

Simply put, business analytics can’t exist in a silo—not when culture and employee engagement are on the line. Instead, people analytics should be leveraged in tandem, as they will paint a fuller picture of what’s happening operationally across the organization.

2. Forecast Headcount Changes Effectively

Leaders can’t plan for tomorrow without understanding the state of their organization today. Access to intel, like current team structure, goal tracking, and talent gaps, helps lay the groundwork to forecast effectively, particularly for headcount planning. To successfully execute on business plans, executives need to align their people investment, too.

ChartHop Scenarios

With a people operations platform like ChartHop, decision-makers can access up-to-date organizational data and historical information surrounding company growth, structural changes, roadmaps, and succession planning. Visualizing how the business has evolved over time combined with business analytics allows leaders to mitigate risk and hire strategically in future headcount plans.

ChartHop also allows leaders to scenario plan using integrated HRIS data to visualize and analyze how headcount changes could affect the overall organization. For example, leaders can experiment with different succession plans and answer key business analytics-related questions, like, “How will promoting this employee affect the overarching budget?” or, “Do we have the resources in place to support this change successfully?”

Businesses can’t grow without having the right people investments in place. Together, business intelligence and people analytics provide a 360-view of how changes affect every facet of the organization, fueling holistic decision-making in headcount and structure.

3. Cultivate Actionable Insights

Finally, business analytics backed by people analytics help cultivate actionable insights that drive meaningful change.

When it comes to driving growth and scaling successfully, leaders can’t make decisions in a bubble. Like with headcount planning, they need a wealth of cross-functional insights to paint the bigger picture and account for different outcomes. Layering in business analytics to people-related reports, graphs, maps, and scenario plans, ensures decision-makers have a comprehensive understanding of the company to secure financial health, operational efficiency, and overall business success.

ChartHop Map

Leaders also need a tool to communicate changes effectively down through functional managers to individual contributors. A platform like ChartHop makes communicating new decisions and strategies easy, fostering org-wide transparency and accessibility, so everyone is aligned.

Change can only happen when leaders have a holistic understanding of the organization and its people. Combined, people analytics and business analytics drive the comprehensive knowledge needed to spark action.

More Data For More Insights

It’s exciting and promising that companies are prioritizing business analytics. But on their own, they don’t offer insights into a company’s greatest asset: its people.

People analytics and business analytics aren’t mutually exclusive. Instead, the two complement each other seamlessly, fueling a holistic understanding and better decision-making across the organization. When integrated with a platform that plays well with other business analytics tools, people analytics can maximize insights that power strategy, allowing executives and other leaders to lead confidently.

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