Benefits and Compensation

Communicating Metrics Effectively—Strategies for Success

The metrics available to you are literally endless, so you must limit yourself to tracking those that best capture what’s important to your organization. And then, as we’ll discuss today, it’s equally important to communicate that data effectively.

3 Strategies for Success

There are any number of ways to share HR metrics with your management team, but there are some pretty standard practices and features applicable to any effective metrics presentation. Read on for tips on how to communicate knock-your-socks-off metrics to the team.

  • Make it clear. Explain, in commonly used business terms, the data source for each metric and how measurements were established. This helps the management team achieve a common understanding of the metrics you’ve conveyed. As much as possible, HR management should try to use formulas, ratios, and language that is commonly used by the organization’s other business leaders. For instance, ROI, or return on investment, is universally understood in the business world.
  • Don’t double dip. Use relevant data that are available to you but refrain from duplicating data from other departments and/or business units. For example, the team may already have stats on the number of turnovers by department. If that’s the case, show how that number affects the bottom line by providing a cost of turnover/cost-of-hire metric.
  • Keep it simple. A good metric focuses resources on key areas to facilitate improved efficiency, increase profitability, expand capacity, or plan for future needs. Like most good things, though, you can have too many metrics, so refrain from creating a deluge of data that overwhelm your audience. Create an HR metrics “dashboard” to share with the team. Give them the salient points without bogging them down with statistical overload.

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Start Now

Developing HR metrics is often one of those important-but-not-urgent tasks that tends to get shoved onto the back burner. Don’t wait until you have the perfect system in place—just do it. Even if your data are not perfect, start using them anyway and refine over time.

Begin with what you have easy access to, even if it’s only one metric (like turnover rate), and establish a baseline for the data. You can build on the data over time, and you can also continue to tweak the presentation for maximum impact.

Metrics, compensation makeovers, base pay, variable pay, incentives, increases … compensation and benefits are never easy! “Maintain internal equity and external competitiveness, with benefits and compensation, and control turnover, but still meet management’s demands for lowered costs.” Sound familiar?
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