How to Use People Data to Transform Your Employee Lifecycle

Aug 24, 2022
Reading time: 11 min

Think you’re safe from high attrition rates? Think again. That’s because the national turnover rate will continue to increase up to 75% more than we’ve seen in the past. It’s therefore crucial to understand the reasons why people are leaving to prevent turnover issues in the future.

More times than not, the answer can be found within your employee lifecycle. A robust employee lifecycle – or the different phases employees move through at your company – can help you attract and retain top talent. Alternatively, a disjointed employee lifecycle signals that you’re not a people-first organization, leading to employees looking for roles elsewhere.

That’s why People leaders should think holistically and analytically about their employee lifecycle, which means looking to qualitative and quantitative data to help set goals. And since your organization’s metrics and people data should always influence your leadership decisions, this should be an easy next step for your business. Doing so will help create a company culture of respect and transparency, in turn helping boost your employee experience.

Ready to see how your people data can transform your employee lifecycle? Dive into the lifecycle stages below to discover how you can make more impactful decisions.

Do you track metrics throughout your employee lifecycle?

Read our top five metrics here

The Recruitment Stage

At the recruitment stage, your company should focus on the candidate experience. To do so, leadership and talent acquisition teams need to leverage your people data to make smart decisions for your teams.

Melissa Adamo, Principal People Business Partner at ChartHop, understands the importance of people operations platforms when it comes to finding the right candidates. She says: “It’s a way for talent acquisition teams to be on the same page as executives with regard to hiring plans and budget. Additionally, a proper people operations platform will retain historical data, allowing all stakeholders to analyze hiring trends and salaries, which will help make predictions about future outcomes.”

Therefore, by understanding the trends within your people data, your talent acquisition teams and managers are better equipped to determine the right fit for open positions.

The ability to slice and dice your people data helps drive insights when it comes to every step of your employee lifecycle.

Of course, all of this happens on the backend of the recruitment process. This deep dive creates a strong impression for candidates too: Your job descriptions will be more transparent and specific, and your recruiters will be more organized, all of which leads to a positive hiring process.

The Onboarding Stage

While you’ve already made a positive first impression during the recruitment phase, the onboarding phase is another chance to shine. And this stage in your employee lifecycle is incredibly important, as structured onboarding programs are credited for 58% of new hires staying at their organization over three years.

So how do you ensure your new hires feel supported on day one?

  • Craft a welcome email series. Establish rapport with your new hires through a preboarding email sequence. It’s also a great way to start collecting information – such as t-shirt size and favorite treat – to help customize welcome boxes and week one activities.
  • Create playbooks to streamline communication. Look to easy-to-follow, pre-built templates and tutorials to help scale your onboarding process efficiently and effectively and create a seamless employee journey.
  • Build an onboarding buddy program. Your onboarding buddy program will engage and welcome employees from the start. Specifically at Microsoft, new hires with assigned onboarding buddies were 23% more satisfied with their onboarding experience.
  • Audit your onboarding process. Gathering feedback from new employees is a sure-fire way to improve your onboarding strategy. Use pre-built surveys and house your data in one spot, like a modern people operations platform, for easy access.
  • Establish a 30-60-90 day plan. When you establish a 30-60-90 day plan, as Adriana Roche did at MURAL, you’ll help create “a super engaging and supporting experience for new hires, no matter what career stage someone is in.”

The Development Stage

What better time to use your people data than during the development stage?

You can use your people data to identify skills gaps, track individual performance plans, create succession plans, and determine learning and development needs.

And with a people operations platform that has performance management tools, managers will be better suited to support their people. Specifically, you can:

  • Keep all performance review material safe, secure, and accessible in one place.
  • Improve performance by empowering teams to course correct at any time.
  • Give managers the templates and metrics they need to conduct reviews.
  • Analyze performance alongside other pieces of your people data, such as location, gender, and veteran status.

The example below shows performance review data run through various filters, such as by location, generation, and ethnicity. Unfortunately, when your people data is spread across multiple tools, it’s easy to miss trends. But here, we can quickly see something is going on with the customer success department – all team members received threes on their performance review, instead of varied scores like the other departments. Knowing this, leaders can dive deeper into manager alignment and best practices.

ChartHop Performance Review example

With ChartHop, you can layer your people data to gain insights into your performance reviews.

The Retention Stage

It’s no secret that a strong total compensation strategy – which includes pay and benefits – will help attract new candidates and retain top talent. In fact, 46% of people report that health benefits influence their decision to accept an offer, while 56% say it's a key factor to whether they’ll remain at their company.

Want to learn more about responsible compensation planning?

Read our insights here

While competitive compensation and benefits are important for employees, it’s also essential that they can access that information easily at any time.

When you choose a people operations platform that integrates with your tech stack, employees have a single place to access their compensation and benefits. This looks like viewing their current and historic compensation data, PTO, and equity in just a few clicks.

ChartHop integrates with your HRIS and payroll systems

Integrations help keep all of your people data in one place. No more juggling multiple tabs and spreadsheets.

Furthermore, the right technology allows leaders to modify permission settings so personal information is kept private. For example, you may choose that an individual’s compensation band is viewable by the employee, direct manager, and People team. When managers are privy to this information, they can make compensation recommendations (such as adjustments based on met benchmarks) quickly and confidently.

Trust us – your people will appreciate the transparency and feel more supported in their financial and wellness needs.

The Exit Stage

While your employees are leaving your organization in this stage, don’t discredit the feedback you can collect. Since they’re leaving, they are much more likely to be honest. Use this honesty to your advantage and ask the right questions to help better your employee experience.

Since we know that company culture greatly impacts the overall employee experience, consider asking employees about how company culture impacted their employee journey. You can then compare this feedback to your metrics like your engagement and DEI data to determine next steps for your organization.

Also consider how offboarding someone will affect your other employees. To support remaining teammates and ensure a smooth exit, make sure you:

  • Determine logistics. Disconnect employees from sensitive information and make sure all paperwork is complete before they leave.
  • Transfer work to others. Develop a workflow so teammates can ask questions about projects before the leaving employee exits.
  • End on a positive note. Ideally, the exit stage leaves a positive last impression with your former employee. A respectful relationship also helps you glean valuable insights during the exit interview that you can weave back into your processes.

Focusing on Your Employee Lifecycle

It makes sense to use your people data to drive specific initiatives. However, unless you’re looking at your employee lifecycle holistically and analytically, you may miss the mark.

Your people deserve more than initiatives led by gut-decisions or the newest fad. Instead of switching to a four-day work week because it was mentioned on the news, look to your people data to determine what your employees really want. Sure, it may be a four-day work week, but it may actually be regularly-scheduled off-sites or professional development opportunities.

Ultimately, when your metrics drive your efforts, you’ll create a more responsive, positive experience for your current and future employees.

This post was written in collaboration with our friends at Finch, who are building the universal API for census and payroll data. Check out their article on how you can hit your employee lifecycle KPIs via your people data.

Looking for more ways to use your people data? Read best practices from our 2022 People Pioneer winners, who led their companies through critical initiatives to scale and support employee well-being.

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