23 (118) 2016
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Atmosphere and analytics – the future of innovation in HR

by Robert Leeming, editor hrreview.com.pl
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Innovation in HR is crucial. An innovative HR department will help to create an innovative company.  Employers are missing out on a host of innovative ideas by not listening to their staff.

In-depth research of over 1,000 employees by software firm Wazoku found that each member of staff in a large company (one employing over 500), suggests six ideas to improve business performance and profitability each year.

However, management often don’t have the processes in place to collate and respond to these ideas. Of those questioned, 52% said that despite the avalanche of good ideas to be found in the office there was no procedure in place to air them to management and other co-workers. And 59% went as far as to say that their ideas were often simply ignored.

The survey also found that ideas picked up by leadership were implemented in only 39% of cases and only 43% of innovations were even acknowledged by employers.

HR departments have to keep track of and acknowledge the good ideas of their employees. 21st Century businesses move at such a pace, that any idea that could potentially put a firm ahead of the pack has to be considered and responded to. The job of the innovative HR department is to act as the bridge between management and their employees, in order to encourage innovation and experimentation at even the lowest level of the company.  

Some would say it’s the responsibility of an innovative HR department to recreate the atmosphere of a cutting edge start-up within even the largest company. Start-ups are the companies that pioneer change within business. The most innovative companies today, such as Uber and Twitter, were originally struggling start-ups looking for the best ways to push their products to the next level. To do this an open environment has to be fostered within the office, leading to more social collaboration between employees.

Success, even small successes, have to be recognised by HR departments to keep morale high. The innovative HR department has to recognise, at a personal level, the people that drive that change within in company.

As well as honouring success, examples of someone breaking the mould, being daring and experimental should also be honoured and recognised. The innovative HR department should not punish failure, because not every experiment is going to work; instead it should celebrate the successes. Letting people know that they’re empowered to experiment within the scope of their responsibilities is also very important and will help to breed innovation within a company.

The innovative HR department must also be ahead of the curve when it comes to the use of big data and analytics. Big data offers companies actionable insights that can help a HR department manage a business better. Big data can, for example, tell you how engaged employees are and what can be learnt from the most engaged employees. Symposium events, the sister company of HRreview, will in July hold an event entirely focused on People Metrics and Analytics, in response to this growing trend. The company will also consider the important role of social media in recruitment in an event in July.

Technology, and in particular big data and analytics, are the areas that will define HR in the future. However, as the power and scope of what can be monitored by a HR department grows, it will be up to the sector itself to draw best-practice guidelines when it comes to protecting the privacy of employees. The ability of a business to monitor, for example, the health of its employees might be an area, in the future, where a line could quite easily be crossed, where a company snoops too deeply into the private lives of its workers. The innovative HR department should know where to draw the line.

However, if sensitive information – such as information pertaining to employee’s moods – is collected and then used in a creative way to better the mood of those working for the company, then this can only be good and to the benefit of all of those involved? Especially if it involves taking concrete action in response to the information gathered, such as increasing staffing ratios or providing a staff breakfast in the mornings.

As time moves on, technology will to become much more personalised and potentially much more invasive and the innovative HR department is going to have to come up with the best ways to both manage and utilise that.
www.hrreview.com.pl / www.hrreview.co.uk

To find out more about Symposium Events please visit here: http://www.symposium.com.pl

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