Big Data, A Game-Changer for Recruiters

by Sohini Bagchi    Dec 30, 2015


Big Data is the new frontier for innovation and productivity across all industries and functions. By leveraging Big Data, HR professionals can empower his organization to make fact-based decisions about its human capital investments, most importantly, about talent retention, a key issue in the industry today. Dr. B. Muthukumaran, Practice Head- Big Data, HTC Global Services explains to CXOtoday, how  by harnessing the power of Big Data, HR department and likewise the organization can make better workforce decisions for today and tomorrow. Excerpt.

Why do you think big data analytics can be an essential component of recruiting?

Big Data analytics clubbed with Text mining has come up with new ways of understanding the capabilities of Human Resource potential.  Every human being expresses his/her opinion through a language, which is reduced to sentences and words. The choice of sentences and words are controlled by the environment, education and exposure levels of the employee. It is therefore essential that we interpret the written and spoken statements of the employee with big data to understand the personal traits leading to performance.

 What preconceptions do HR professionals have about Big Data and analytics?

The first and foremost preconception is centered around “Analytics calls for Mathematics and statistics”, which is not true.  The current problem which is prevalent mostly in the HR domain is not restricted to lack of analytical skills but the inability to target that skill to create the kind of insights that matter most to the organization. This is achieved in the longer run when deeper understanding of the business domain is clubbed with employee KPI (Key Performance Indicator) which leads to an effective bottom line.

How is big data challenging the traditional HR functions of hiring and training?

Talent capital analytics is emerging as a powerful technique across the world to capitalize the capabilities of Big data.  Talent capital has started reading through the lines to understand the profile – choice of words in the profile and have started adopting the techniques of stylometrics. This is not new to the industry. A weighted scoring system is built around the mapping of articulated profile ( a few 100 thousand ) and articulated job specifications, leading to profile baskets with various weights. Going through a good collection of profiles was considered as a difficult task and time consuming, which has been addressed by big data. 

How can companies use predictive analytics and Big Data to score the top talent in the industry?

As mentioned earlier, deep understanding emerges when there is a clear understanding of job role leading to job design and the economics surrounding the job role. This has to be suitably clubbed with the organizational guidelines and the local design factors for an effective retention.  This design data is coupled with technical statistical analysis from a larger data set.

Please explain the concept of Natural language processing (NLP), and how can it control attrition in an organization.

I would go back on the earlier response. Any human being has to express his opinion through a language, which is reduced to sentences and words. The choice of sentences and words are controlled by the environment, education  and exposure levels of employee. The expressed feelings can be churned through NLP engine to evaluate and measure the emotions of employee. This will help the organization to design their retention strategies.

What do you think the future holds for HR in terms of tech adoption?

The future profiles would be analyzed by Machine learning driven programs to pick the right candidates.