Times are changing rapidly and human resource teams are perfectly placed to lead the cultural change to an AI-driven workplace. What does that mean? What action should you be taking today to prepare for tomorrow? And why is it down to human resources?

When we were designing our model for driving organisational culture change, it was clear there was one group that belonged at the centre: the Human Resources team. Human Resources (HR), as a function, needs to be brought into the digital transformation process to oversee the cultural change, support staff and ensure that all those impacted by AI and data in their work understand the benefits and risks. Data processes also need to be brought into the HR function, supporting HR managers in their roles.

The HR Pentagon of Data Culture

As decision making goes digital, more staff will need to become competent in using data analytics and understand the importance of using data in making decisions. We need HR to lead these processes.

  • Reskilling some staff will be necessary as work previously performed by humans becomes automated. Identifying staff suitable for reskilling will be essential
  • Upskilling other members of staff will be crucial so the team can develop new skills to work alongside machine insight or to take on additional roles in the new time available to them

Some staff will be specialists in analytics & data science and be able to offer support, but HR needs to lead on the training and manage the upskilling process, not leave this to the data scientists or business analysts.

It’s not just technical skills. Data regulation is growing in scope and complexity so ensuring that company applications of AI don’t break laws is essential.

It will become increasingly important to understand the data literacy skills that new talent brings and so HR managers need data literacy themselves. Data processes can also help track the effectiveness of job advertisements, support the initial screening of candidates, target better responses with job replacement campaigns and reduce the time to fill posts.

HR teams work in highly regulated environments and at the Institute of Analytics, we promote the ethical use of data and AI within regulatory and best practice guidelines. We always explain the benefits of technology as well as the concerns, so that you’re making the right choices.

Staff retention is also important; data analytics can help you to identify patterns associated with the decision to leave an organisation thanks to data around length of service and promotion opportunities, or even by searching performance review reports. Our AI Essentials Tool Kit will help you have conversations around the kinds of analytics that you would like to make use of in the business to set the standards high for retention and to track performance and cost savings through staff retention.

Data can also help reduce turnover by identifying recurring issues the company faces, finding out why people struggle in their role or better understand the company ethos – all through creating and evaluating job satisfaction surveys.

We know that personalisation works and today’s talent expects a personalised approach. You can set up outreach and tracking programmes using data analytics at times when you need to scale up, such as an induction for new graduate recruits that supports and tracks them over the first few months. Plus, you can help staff identify the best pathways throughout their career.

Graph data can help you map optimal routes at every stage of the staff engagement process; you can look for networks and optimal pathways to get the best results.

IoA Membership provides access to 1400+ hours of training, including graph analytics which is a relatively simple tool to use.

Human Resources departments are a big source of company data. There are a lot of reports and records on staff and on processes that could be used for insights to mine efficiencies and identify opportunities. If you are interested in learning some more technical skills, we can get you into our Business Analyst or Data Analyst training tracks. You can decide how far to take your learning.

Data skills will soon be on the ‘must have’ list for more and more job postings. Human Resource Intelligence will become a future role that you may be excited to move into or explore further.

Decision making in HR can be supported such as how to allocate salaries / distribute compensation to meet skills challenges and in response to market changes for those skills, how to advertise jobs to fill them more quickly or better and may offer HR a chance to demonstrate ROI.

The scale of the coming changes is huge and opting out won’t be a choice. And companies won’t just be managing humans in the future. The benefit of using data analytics is to take advantage of the superhuman powers machines can have to see patterns in the data that people aren’t able to by picking up on problems and opportunities long before a human gaze has noticed that it’s time to act. It’s important to be well-versed in order to lead conversations about AI and data – there is a lot of fear out there. Complex business challenges and transformation are more likely to be solved by people with data analytics skills.

Check out this article from HR News featuring Dr Clare Walsh, IoA Director of Education.

We need HR managers that can deliver human and machine talent management

Machines are not perfect. Data gets its meaning from its context, and there will always be nuances and aspects of organisational practice that the data and AI cannot capture. How will you manage a disagreement between human and machine decision makers in the future? What will continue to bind your staff to your organisation while everyone goes through this growth phase?

There will also be work to train machines to take over some routine and repetitive tasks as AI becomes more common in the workplace. Work processes that middle management might describe in 10 steps may well, in real-life execution, require hundreds of steps to complete. The HR team may need to step in to define roles and processes in a granularity never used before. Understanding all these processes will help you take a leading role in talent management as well as role allocation and, most importantly, ensure that human oversight is built into processes.

There are a lot of ways that the HR function will be impacted along with every other department, and upskilling will be part of your own personal future too. There are benefits to HR professionals going first in this transformation process.

Why not consider annual membership of the IoA as an Affiliate Member?

As part of your membership fee, you’ll get access to our AI Essentials Tool Kit, a guide which introduces the key concepts of data science without having to do any of the practical work. You’ll also have access to our industry updates and insights, and our networking and recruitment platforms. Learn in your lunch hour.

Get Membership

Our IoA Guide to Data Culture Change has ideas to help you. It’s free to download at the link below.

Download here

Become an IoA Member and we can support you to get into the Data Analytics profession.

We have two tracks to guide you:
Business Analyst starts with clickable tools and common business applications of data and builds skills to running simple machine learning on R to get quick insights.

Data Analyst covers Python, the world’s most common data science language. No prior mathematics or coding experience are necessary. By the end, you will be able to analyse all data types, including images and free text.

Get Membership

Become an IoA Member and you will get access to 400+ training courses including:
• Graph Analysis for tracking staff
• Data sets with people analytics to practice on
• Natural Language Processing with traditional tools and with Transformers
• MLOps and the IoA Data Engineering Tool Kit

We also have training on professionalism and ethics and updates on changes to the regulations which will affect HR intelligence.

Get Membership

A good place to start is with the IoA Guide to Data Culture Change, a free resource to help organisations start the process to upskill teams in all departments.

Click here to download the free resource

Join the IoA today and build your knowledge of AI Essentials

Our IoA AI Essentials Tool Kit will help you continue the work to transform your organisation for the future of work. This is a friendly way into the world of data analytics as you will not be required to manipulate data in spreadsheets or demonstrate any technical skills. The tool kit explains the key takeaways that you need to understand to start leading discussions on data use. You'll gain the ability to make decisions around AI for the benifit of the HR function and for your organisation.

So, whether your goal is setting up your own list of core data skills for your staff, redefining responsibilities in your organisations or supporting your staff as they navigate this time of huge change, that process starts with you. Let’s get there together.

This is what’s covered in the tool kit:

  • Data-Driven Decision Making for Business: Dive deep into the foundations of data-driven decision making. The module equips you with the ability to apply these principles in real-life scenarios spanning sectors like finance, marketing and operations.
  • Data Skills for Business: Strengthen your data acumen as you grapple with core data concepts. By the end of this module, you'll be adept at answering business queries using data, making you a valuable asset to any organisation.
  • Marketing Analytics for Business: Step into the shoes of a Marketing Analyst, discovering how data is the linchpin that helps companies understand their customers better. This no-code module ensures everyone, regardless of their background, can leverage the power of analytics.
  • Understanding Artificial Intelligence (AI): Demystify the world of AI by diving deep into its many facets. From machine learning and deep learning to natural language processing and generative models, you'll be well-equipped to differentiate between buzzwords and core concepts, all without the need for coding.
  • Understanding Machine Learning: Launch your machine learning journey as you navigate its foundational concepts. Experience firsthand how machine learning powers innovative technologies like self-driving cars and personalised shopping recommendations.
  • Introduction to ChatGPT: Familiarise yourself with ChatGPT, one of the powerful tools under the AI umbrella. Learn the art of crafting effective prompts and uncover business use cases that showcase the tool's versatility.

There are two ways to join the IoA to get access to the AI Essentials Tool Kit and the full benefits of IoA Membership:

Corporate Partnership

  • Get recognised as a progressive company that operates ethically and for the investment you make in your staff who receive access to IoA Membership benefits
  • Support your team’s professional development and the needs of your business with access to 1400+ hours of training from beginner to advanced, ranging from the first steps moving away from spreadsheets and intuitive decision making to MLOps
  • Receive exclusive opportunities for enhanced visibility for your company and special rates for in-person events

Individual Membership

  • Gain recognition for your professionalism, achieve your goals and work towards attaining the highest levels with Chartered status
  • Access structured career progression with custom tracks (Business Analyst with R and Data Analyst with Python) and upskill with specialist Tool Kits including Analytics for Accountancy & Finance and Data Engineering
  • Stay up to date with advancements in technology, changes in regulation and thought leadership with our monthly webinar and masterclass series and insights

About the IoA

The Institute of Analytics (IoA) is a not-for-profit professional body for the analytics & data science community.

Our mission is to develop and promote the highest professional and ethical standards, create awareness of the value of data analytics and its uses in society and inspire the next generation of analysts & data scientists through education.

We help our members stay ahead of the curve of digital transformation through access to benefits including training and upskilling, updates about advancements in technology and regulation, masterclasses and thought leadership.

To find out more, email: hello@ioaglobal.org