Just this past month, the acclaimed Canada’s Top 100 Employers for 2013 list was released and an editorial was featured in the Globe and Mail. (You can see the full list here) Among the ranks were 3M Canada Co., Deeley Harley-Davidson Canada, Loblaws Cos. Ltd., and Winnipeg Airports Authority Inc. The list is diverse, awarding honours to a mixed bag of firms, from Technip Canada Ltd (124 employees) to Toronto-Dominion Bank (43, 850 employees). While the nature and size vary significantly, one factor remains constant across every organization: employee engagement. Human resource development is at the core of every listed organization’s values, and for good reason; human capital is considered their greatest asset.
This week I was helping a colleague figure out what their HR data was telling them and how to put this into a report. The first place to start was the organizational goals and where they wanted to get to.
How do you measure turnover? Most people think they understand turnover. It is a simple and useful concept when it comes to understanding the flow of people through your organization. It is an important marker for determining overall organizational health and likely productivity impacts. If turnover is too high, your business stalls due to constant re-training; if turnover is too low, it can stagnate, leading to mediocre performance.
The most frequently used analogy when it comes to measuring HR is that of driving a car without a speedometer: how would you drive if you did not know your speed?
The deeper we look into HR measurement the less satisfying this analogy becomes. The basic premise that you need information to perform well is correct. However, when you have a speedometer and you are going too fast, your actions are obvious – you take your foot of the gas pedal.
This direct link between information and action is not the case for HR.
Organizational behaviour has been defined as the field of study that investigates the impact that individuals, groups and structures have on behaviour within organizations, particularly workplaces, in order to improve the organization’s effectiveness. But is it important for employers to understand organizational behaviour?
You arrive at the office Monday morning to discover that your Senior Vice-President of Marketing and three of your sales people have resigned and accepted jobs with your competitor. You quickly realize that this has the potential of seriously harming, if not destroying, the company’s business. Do you have any recourse against the departing employees or the company to which they have moved?