Use of Workforce-Related Metrics to Rise Sharply

By Staff Report

Jan. 11, 2005

Only 12 percent of companies are significantly using workforce management metrics such as employee engagement or productivity to meet their business goals. But 84 percent expect to use such metrics more over the next three years, according to a Conference Board study.

The study, sponsored by PeopleSoft, involved business executives based mainly in North America. Most respondents were in the human resources field, either as vice presidents or directors of human resources. Only 16 percent say that human resources professionals receive “good” or “extensive” training on how to make the link between people metrics to business strategy.

Some companies that the Conference Board says are actively using workforce management metrics include:

  • CNA Insurance, which is trying show how employee skills, training investment, employee commitment, internal movements and other measures affect net operating income.

  • Intel, where high-level executives review human resources metrics every quarter. These range from turnover rates for employees in their first year to ratings showing how satisfied employees are with their relocations.

  • Corning, whose research found that its most “pivotal talent” was midlevel employees–not upper-management executives–and structured its recruiting, training, leadership, recognition, rewards and career development programs accordingly.

  • Outrigger, which “encourages its staff to think creatively about ways to improve its business.” The hotel/resort company’s innovations have improved check-in and check-out procedures.

  • Cascade Engineering, where senior managers and employees review data on leadership development, safety and more on a monthly or quarterly basis.

  • Priority Health, which provides managers with special training and coaching on retaining key employees and calculates bonuses partly based on managers’ retention results for those crucial employees.

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