• Nigel Dias
    June 21, 2019
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    On Tuesday, we launched the latest HR Analytics ThinkTank report, Predictive Analytics and Data Science: A Guide for HR Analytics Leaders. Download instructions below.

    As part of this, the ThinkTank's Professor @Andy Charlwood (Professor of HRM) and Dr Danat Valizade (Senior Lecturer on Quantitative Methods) from University of Leeds took us through their ThinkTank paper, focusing on the use of real predictive analytics techniques used to connect HR factors to business outcomes in the care industry (nursing homes).

    Thank you to everyone who left some positive feedback. If you would like to watch it again, or if you missed the webinar, we are delighted to share the webinar with everyone, below:



    A few people have commented that the webinar was both quite "advanced" and quite "technical". As most of our community will know, our research and content (all for free) spans the spectrum of HR analytics content, from strategy topics to the advanced techniques to exploring change management. We believe that in order to develop the practice of HR analytics, we need to innovate and profile thought at each end of the spectrum. Even if you aren't a data scientist yourself, we hope you find the session useful, and will contribute your thoughts for how these techniques might help your organisation's decision making.

    Download the Report
    If you're a ThinkTank participant, you can login and download the report, Predictive Analytics and Data Science: A Guide for HR Analytics Leaders, from the Forum. If you can't reach the report, please email and we'll help you get access.

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    Related Links
    ThinkTank Overview: Please click here
    Report Announcement: Please click here
    Meetup Recording: Please click here

    Please note you may need to log in to access some content.
  • Andrea Schirru
    June 16, 2019
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    The author of this post is an Organisation and People Data Analyst at GSK, and a speaker from a previous meetup. To watch @Andrea Schirru give a talk on Survivor Analyses, please click here. To be kept up to date HR and People analytics meetups around the world, please sign up to the ThinkTank newsletter by clicking here or keep an eye on our Meetup Listings Page here.

    Predicting Healthcare Outcomes Using People Data Science with Professor Charlwood
    In the first presentation of the evening, @Andy Charlwood (Professor of HRM at Leeds University and HR Analytics ThinkTank Academic Lead) took us though a data science example within the healthcare industry. There is currently a global shortage of nurses at the moment, but there are massive challenges to invest in the industry being a low margin business.

    To develop a casual model, he considered outcome indicators related to quality, people resourcing and contextual variables. Regression analyses allowed him to view changes over time within individual homes as well as within home differences but was not very informative to take decisions. Random forest provided more immediate insight than traditional regression analysis approach. Creating a partial dependent plot in Python he could see more clearly that having a more experienced and skilled workforce will likely improve quality in nurses homes.

    However, the magnitude of the quality improvements is unlikely to make this a cost effective intervention. Professor Charlwood suggested that if we wanted to learn more from observational data, we would need to use it as a basis for experimental and quasi-experimental analysis.

    On 18 June, @Andy Charlwood and Dr Danat Valizade will be hosting a free webinar, talking attendees through the use of Data Science in HR, highlighting the techniques used in their talk. To register please click here.

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    Seagulls and Bombs: Predicting Performance in the Workplace with Andreas Kyprianou
    In his presentation, @Andreas Kyprianou, Head of Talent, shared how at Bank of America they optimise assessment selection to predict if someone is going to be a good employee. Starting from Schmidt & Hunter’s key concept (1998) of predictive validity of assessment methods, that throughout more than 30 years proved that only GMA (general mental ability) & structured interviews work in practice, he focused on task performance (what) and contextual performance (how). He used ROC (Receiving Operating Characteristics) to predict whether someone is going to be a high performer taking all the test scores (the higher on top of the curve the better the prediction power of the test) and then created a binary variable (>50 high performers, all others). This way he proved that 66% of the time the numerical test would be right (‘what’) and, going a step further, tested the interrelationships between the tests through a Chi-Square and Regression Analysis. He found out that if the 3 variables numerical testing, AC-grouping exercise & 1st stage interview are all present the likelihood of predicting high performers is 75%, if one of 3 is missing it drastically falls down. There is a high degree of interrelations between those variables.

    However, with this approach, it was not possible to predict well the contextual performance. Therefore, as a result, for the task performance he requested improved versions of numerical testing, group exercise and 1st stage interview. He focused on training interviews and group assessors to identify impression management techniques and implemented a cut-off point of 80% at numerical testing to improve sifting prior to assessment centre. Within the contextual performance, because it was not predicted by anything, he introduced situation judgement testing and are now looking at different things, e.g. behavioural assessments, gamification tools and personality assessment testing.

    To watch the video (for free) please click here.

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    To join us a the London meetup, or to find HR and People Analytics meetups near you around the world, please sign up to the ThinkTank newsletter by clicking here or keep an eye on our Meetup Listings Page here.

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  • Andy Charlwood
    May 24, 2019
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    On 18 June, we will host @Andy Charlwood (Professor of HRM and ThinkTank Academic Lead) and Danat Valizade as they talk us through data science in HR, giving real examples based on their recent work for the National Institute for Health Research.

    To sign up, please click here. If you have participated in the ThinkTank research, you will be sent a copy of the report after the Launch webinar. If you would like to take part in the research, please register here.


    There is a huge amount of hype about the potential of predictive analytics and data science to make HR more data driven and evidence based. At the same time, a range of evidence suggests that the use of predictive analytics in HR is quite limited. Although many organisations are now using predictive analytics to understand which employees are more likely to quit I haven’t come across many other interesting examples of predictive analytics in action. I have talked to a number of HR analytics leaders who have experimented with predictive analytics in projects but found the results underwhelming because the actionable insight from the analysis was limited.

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    Does having more and more highly skilled care staff result in better quality care? — Andy Charlwood

    Over the last year, my colleague Danat Valizade and I have been working on a research project (funded by the National Institute for Health Research) with a care home operator to try to understand the relationship between care home staffing and indicators of the quality of care. Broadly, we have been asking the question, does having more and more highly skilled care staff result in better quality care? This is an important question, because the care home sector expected to provide high quality care for residents despite low levels of funding from the UK government (if we contrast the UK with countries like the Netherlands, UK funding is much lower). The care home operator provided us with data from their administrative systems detailing staffing levels for different job grades (care assistant, senior care assistant and registered nurse) week-by-week along with data on the characteristics of the care homes and their residents. This project has allowed us to experiment with predictive analytics techniques, comparing and contrasting these with more traditional forms of statistical analysis.

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    Danat and I are going to be sharing the provisional results of this project in a webinar on Tuesday 18th June. The exciting thing about this is that it will give us the opportunity to share what we have learnt about applying predictive analytics to real world people management problems. We’ll be talking about the importance of thinking hard about causality before starting any analysis, how traditional regression results compare to machine learning techniques and the strengths and limitations of different machine learning methods for addressing people management problems. If you are interested in finding out more about how to apply predictive analytics in HR, or if you have yourself used predictive analytics and want to tell us about your experiences and how they compare with ours, we hope you can join us for the webinar.

    To register for the webinar on 18th June please register here.
  • Nigel Dias
    April 3, 2019
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    On the 18 March, our London HR and People Analytics community held its second meetup of the year. During this event our HR speakers, Dr Keith McNulty from McKinsey and Jared Valdron from Github, shared their experiences being technical leaders within the field. In our search for inspiration from other data industries, Dr @Merve Alanyali, Data Scientist at LV=, presented on her PhD using neural networks to predict wealth in London and New York using Instagram photos.

    Exploring the Edge of the People Analytics Universe with Keith McNulty
    Many people will recognise Keith McNulty (Global Head of People Measurement and Analytics @ McKinsey) as one of the thought leaders pushing the technical boundaries of the HR analytics space. In his talk, delivered with a Star Wars theme, he talked us through structural equation modelling and text analyses to pull out the themes of what characters talk about. He also added to the conversation that Kevin Metherell from Experian started in the January meetup by talking more about the uses of ONA in HR decision making.

    To watch the recording of Keith's presentation please click the image below or click here.

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    People Analytics Through Organizational Change with Jared Valdron
    There is a temptation to assume that when you are the People Analytics lead for companies like McKinsey or Github, that you have an advantage because your audience is already data driven. In his talk, Jared took us through a variety of themes, from understanding and identifying variables to use in our modelling and why they the pros and cons of working in a data-driven organisation, telling stories about his experiences using (or not using) model and the actions they might drive.

    My favourite part of the talk was Jared's third talking point where he highlights that sometimes analysts can become attached to their models - but a good analyst will know when it is working, when it should be changed, and when it should be scrapped.

    To watch the recording of Jared's talk please click the image below or click here.

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    Estimating Income Using Instagram Pictures
    Dr @Merve Alanyali joined us as our non-HR speaker, giving our predominantly HR data audience a glimpse of what other industries are doing in their analytics practices. During her PhD, Merve used a series of deep learning tools to parse millions of Instragram images.

    To watch the recording of Merve's presentation please click the image below or click here.

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    Don't forget, you can still take part in the HR Analytics ThinkTank Research in 2019
    If you would like to help us and our university partners analyse HR and People analytics, joining our community as it searches and shares free insights around building functions, skills, careers, technology and more, please click here to read more, or please register to take part in the research by completing this form.

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  • Nigel Dias
    February 25, 2019
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    The following is a blog from the London HR and People Analytics Meetup on 16 January 2019. If you are based in London and want to join the mailing list for these events, please click here. If you are looking for a meetup in your area, or want to share your community details, please click here for our Global Meetup Directory.

    On the 16 January 2019, the London HR and People Analytics meetup community met at Runway East to eat pizza, have a drink and a chat - but also to hear from three speakers: @Kevin Metherell (People Analytics Innovation Lead @ Experian), @Andrea Schirru (People Analyst @ GSK) and Dr Stylianos Kampakis (@Stelios) (Sports and Social Media Data Scientist @ Brandtix).

    The aim of our meetups is simple: to bring together a community diverse data experts (HR and non-HR alike), to share and inspire innovation from the grassroots HR and People analytics community in London. All recordings are available for free on the HR Analytics ThinkTank platform.

    What is ONA? Practical examples of Organisational Network Analyses at Experian
    ONA has been a hot topic for a while now, and everyone is familiar with the pretty visuals associated with it. In this presentation, we asked @Kevin Metherell to give a short and practical talk on ONA, sharing how Experian are really using it to make decisions, and (at least from my Q&A) to articulate what the data sets really look like.

    Some of the key highlights:
    • Diversity - They are able to use ONA to explore unconscious bias in different job paths and business areas
    • Talent Management - They are able to combine ONA and talent data to 'crowdsource' untapped pockets of potential in the workforce
    • Org Design and Social Capital - They were able to identify what capabilities and connections successful new teams need
    • Well Being - Kevin gave some slightly expected uses of ONA in identifying who people "turn to for emotional support" to help train Mental Health First Aiders

    To watch Kevin's whole presentation, please click here. Kevin is a long-term supporter of the HR Analytics ThinkTank too, presenting at the first meetup in 2016 and recording this webinar on predictive attrition modeling in 2017 (exclusive access for research participants).

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    Launching the HR Analytics ThinkTank research for 2019
    We took the January meetup as an opportunity to launch the 2019 HR Analytics ThinkTank. For more information on the research, please click here but if you would like to help us analyse HR analytics, please register to take part in the research by completing this form.

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    What is a survivor analysis? The basics with GSK
    After the networking break, @Andrea Schirru from GSK took us through his examples of conducting survivor analyses at GSK.

    Some of the highlights:
    • Andrea talked us through some of the basic principles of survivor analyses, how they were originally used by life-insurers, and help us to calculate the probability of if/when a state of change will occur across time. In this case, if/when an employee will leave the organisation.
    • Basic survivor analyses are great to summarize time-to-event data (e.g. voluntary termination data), very common in HR, and can be applied also to small samples.
    • By converting the metric to elapsed time (from calendar start/end dates), they were able to study if employees were likely to leave by certain work anniversaries across multiple cohorts within an early talent development programme (1st example) and compare cumulative retention rates across different groups (e.g. countries versus high-low performers) within a specific business unit (2nd example).
    • They could use this to make better decisions about many aspects of the employee lifecycle, from training to retention.

    To watch Andrea's presentation, please click here. Andrea is also a long-time member of the meetup community, so you can probably speak to him at one of the next sessions if you wish.

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    Measuring Potential, Performance and Social Media Commercial Success for Sports Stars
    The final speaker of the evening was Dr Stylianos "@Stelios" Kampakis, a specialist in Sports and Social Media data science. We asked Stylianos to share some stories from his industry, in case it inspired us to think about HR analytics differently.

    Stylianos gave an engaging and detailed talk, but for me, here were a few of the highlights:
    • Performance measurement - Stylianos talked using shorter term discrete changes in performance to see how players get relatively better or worse, and how consistent they play
    • Potential - Related to the above, he talked about combining off-and-on pitch data (sports and social media) to identify "good [commercial] bargains" which might be interesting in HR
    • Employee Brand Value - His examples of using player social media brand measurements to determine commercial successes has some obvious links to how we measure the power of employer brands in attracting talent

    To watch the full recording, please click here.

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    Want to find a meetup near you? Check out our meetup directory for existing groups or you can also join the the ThinkTank mailing list for general ThinkTank updates.

    Check out these photos from the event:

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  • Nigel Dias
    December 13, 2018
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    Whilst the HR Analytics ThinkTank research has been running since 2015, one of the most exciting developments took place last year when we signed an official research partnership with Professor Andy Charlwood and the University of Leeds. By combining our frameworks and data, tracking the growth and impact of HR/people analytics functions over the years, we have been able to upgrade the quality of our research and reports to a an academic level.

    It therefore gives me great pleasure to announce that Dr Sharna Wiblen, Assistant Professor at Sydney Business School at the University of Wollongong, Australia, is also joining the research team.

    Sharna brings another new perspective to the research and analysis of the HR and people analytics industry, and we look forward to her contributions to our reports and ThinkTank content over the course of 2019.
  • Nigel Dias
    December 7, 2018
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    To register for the next London HR and People Analytics on 16 January 2019, please click here.

    Throughout 2018, the London HR and People Analytics meetup group has really taken off. We've hosted dozens of HR and non-HR data speakers, sharing practical and real data stories, growing a grassroots community dedicated not only to improving evidence-based/data-driven people decision-making, but bringing in the techniques and evidence used in other data industries.

    I'm delighted to announce that we're going to kick off 2019 with the same rhythm. On the 16 January, we will start the 2019 event series with Keith McNulty from Mckinsey talking us through his experience of doing network analyses. Those of you who follow Keith will know he is not only an experienced HR analytics thought leader, but an incredibly practical and technical practitioner, and we look forward to him talking the stage.

    We also welcome Andrea Schirru, People Analyst at GSK to the stage. Andrea is a familiar face at the meetups, and he will be taking us through how GSK are carrying out survivor analyses.

    Following on from our belief that the people analytics industry shouldn't grow in silo, we are excited that Stylianos Kampakis will also be taking the stage. Stylianos is a highly experienced data scientist, who will be talking us through some data science examples from the sports and branding data industries. We look forward to a thought-provoking talk that might spark new ideas in our HR and People analytics sphere.

    Finally, for those interested in the HR Analytics ThinkTank research, I will be making a few brief announcements, including announcing new university partners and researchers, and the topics we will be covering throughout 2019, in case anyone would like to contribute.

    How has the London (and Leeds) HR Analytics meetup group grown over 2018

    a grassroots community dedicated not only to improving data-driven people decision-making

    All available recordings from previous sessions can be viewed for free by signing into the HR Analytics ThinkTank Forum.

    There have been many highlights during 2018. We have been hosted by Brydie Lear's People Analytics team, featuring talks by ING people data scientists John Tindel and Veerle van den Akker on text analyses and using algorithms to improve org design. At the same session we had Liz Moorcroft, Data Scientist at Aviva's Customer Analytics team, talk us through her use of ensemble modelling. (Sorry guys, this was before we started recording the actual sessions - we promise to record you next time.)

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    We've also hosted Gary Munro, Head of People Insights, talking us through Sky's use of data (recording here), as well as Yewande Oni, People Data Scientist at Unilever, taking us through a practical text analytics example (recording here). At the same session, Holly Smith, data scientist in the banking sector gave a talk about some key principles of data science (recording here).

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    In addition to the London sessions, there is a growing meetup community happening in Leeds! At the Leeds sessions, driven by Professor Andy Charlwood, who is also one of the HR Analytics ThinkTank's academic leads, a wide range of discussions have taken place in the north of the UK! We've seen talks by Harry Metcalf from the Nestle People Analytics team on absence metrics (recording here), by Heather Kemp, Head of William Hill's People Analytics team on their strategy (recording here), presentations by the NHS's Antony Williamson, and by Dr Sharna Wiblen from Sydney Business School, as well as non-HR data science talks by Tom Forth from the Leeds Open Data Institute (recording here).



    Moving forward in 2019

    If you would like to join a meetup community, follow @HRAnalyticsThinkTank or join www.forum.hranalyticsthinktank.com and we'll keep you up to date. If you would like to host a meetup, we'd be happy to help you find speakers from the HR Analytics ThinkTank global community, or include your event on our mailing list if that helps.

    Either way, thank you for everyone that supported the meetups this year. We look forward to seeing you all in 2019!
  • Nigel Dias
    August 16, 2018
    In 2017, Professor @Andy Charlwood from the University of Leeds and @Nigel Dias researched and produced a ThinkTank report, entitled 'How do organisations successfully build HR analytics functions'. If you're a ThinkTank research member you can download a copy of the full report in this channel.

    If you don't have time to watch the report, or watch the overview webinar with myself and Andy, you can watch some brief highlights here.

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