HR needs to take advantage of IT tools: Expert

Finance, marketing departments more effective using data
||Last Updated: 04/29/2011

Human resources departments are failing to take full advantage of the IT tools available to them, according to Mark Williamson, an HR expert and partner at KPMG, who spoke in a Financial Times podcast.

"There is a whole host of data that we capture now in HR systems," he said, according to media reports. "But it's how we make use of that data and make it into really useable and insightful information for HR at the board table."

People management professionals can use data analysis more effectively to gain additional operational insight, he said. Finance and marketing directors tend to use IT solutions far more effectively than their HR counterparts, and this allows them to bring quantitative data to the boardroom.

"The HR director does not seem to have that same insight," said Williamson.

Plenty of information is captured using enterprise resource planning systems but that data does not filter up to the people at the top in any meaningful way, he said: "That's the gap for me at the moment."

Williamson claimed there is "a real dichotomy" as there’s a focus on workforce analytics in the short term but relatively few HR organizations take a longer-term view, according to media reports.

"It needs to be a labour market view if you're thinking about five years plus planning," he said. "It needs to be a view that really takes into account what the strategic talent agenda is within the organization overall and actually how HR is helping the business plan for that agenda."

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