There are a few books we have run across that are excellent foundations in transforming HR into a strategic business function using Analytics.
- The HR Value Proposition by Dave Ulrich and Wayne Brockbank
A milestone book for HR professionals that led the way to HR beginning to transform itself into a strategic organizational function. Start here if you have not read it already.
- How to Measure Anything: Finding the Value of Intangibles in Business by Douglas W. Hubbard
This is a good start in Analytics for HR since HR inevitably deals in “soft” data like talent management, social media, and organizational psychology.
- The New HR Analytics: Predicting the Economic Value of Your Company’s Human Capital Investments by Dr. Jac Fitz-enz.
This book is biased towards a specific methodology marketed by the author, but parts of the content still provide a good introduction to the types of metrics HR is constantly in search of. If you have only seen basic metrics like headcount, turnover, and absence rates then you may want to look through some of the metrics he proposes.
- Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
While this book may not sound directly related to HR or Analytics, it covers a lot of the risks of relying too heavily on Analytics and the natural bias of the human brain and psychology in decision-making. A critical read for all Analytics professionals.
- The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail- But Some Don’t by Nate Silver
Like the above, this is a good book on the potential failures of statistics in any type of analysis. It also highlights a common fact that self proclaimed experts in prediction are very often incorrect in their predictions. An invaluable word of warning about predictive statistics from a guy who successfully predicted the 2008 election outcome in 49 of the 50 states.
- The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith
An oldie but a goodie – cutting edge stuff in 1776, but still covers the beginnings of modern economic theory that still apply in large part to the global labor economy. In Human Capital Management Analytics, an understanding of global labor market economic theory is an invaluable strategic perspective to have… if you have a lot of spare time on your hands and like to curl up with a good economics book.
If you are looking for a start in the application of Analytics to HR, see our Intro to Analytics post here: