Determining What Data Is “Right” for Your Talent System

The beauty of taking on a new implementation is learning about the client and what makes it unique. Every organization has its own DNA and there's no better way to get to know a company than to get in the weeds with its people systems.

And if there is one thing I've learned in all these experiences is that no matter how unique every client is, they all have one thing in common.

Data is universal. Data is truth. It is the one aspect that is shared by all clients. It doesn't matter whether you are delivering training to 70,000 retail associates across the country or administering performance reviews for 7,000 healthcare workers - who, by the way, may have as many as five jobs (five!) across five sites, every single organization has to have data in the system. Without user data, to whom is the training to be delivered? Without organizational data, how can we launch a performance review for nurses? Going into an implementation's data is the first major hurdle that every client must clear.

Key to a successful implementation is getting the "right" data in the system. This is done by considering the purpose of the data.

The data should be specific. For a learning implementation, think about how your training catalog is segmented and how employees access training; who should have access to what? For instance, do employees in California require access to state-specific training that others across the country do not? Knowing how the data will be used enables you to design an organizational schema that optimizes administration.

The data should be organized well. For example, if performance reviews for employees in customer-facing jobs vary from those for employees working in operations, consider whether a flat position structure or a hierarchical position structure is best for managing the performance review process.

There should be just the right amount of data. In a nutshell, just because we have the employee's home address or gender in the enterprise resource planning system doesn't mean it should be fed into the performance system. Consider what you need to know about a user in order to administer the system. Do you deliver training to users with a particular licensure or professional designation? If so, then that data should be included for users.

Getting the right data in your HCM system is essential to ensuring the effective administration and use of it. The definition of right is unique to you and your business, but the thought process to define it is universal. Know how you approach learning, measure performance, acquire new talent and manage compensation to decide what data is necessary to do just that.

Learn how to make sense of your data in the ebook Four Ways to Easily Get More – Much More – from the Data in Cornerstone OnDemand.

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