Each month, XpertHR's HR data round-up reports on the top HR data stories, and also presents a selection of the best and most interesting HR data-related blog posts.
The HR data tapes series is my quarterly round-up of the best HR data posts to be highlighted in this way.
I'm always on the look-out for more HR data posts. If there's anything out there on HR data that you would like to share, please get in touch! You can submit comments via the box below, or contact me directly via Twitter, LinkedIn or Google+.
The HR data tapes (4)
This latest pick of the best HR data posts is presented in no particular order - just dive in and enjoy!
- Frances Coppola: Youth Unemployment And Abuse Of Statistics
Superb data analysis from self-proclaimed "amateur economist" Frances Coppola on two alleged instances of the "abus[e of] statistics [relating to youth unemployment levels in EU countries] for political purposes." This involves the exclusion of students from youth unemployment figures. Coppola presents a compelling argument that "these days the majority of undergraduates work their way through college, so excluding undergraduates from the [youth unemployment] figures does not accurately reflect the numbers of young people actually seeking work." As I pointed out in a comment on Frances' post, a similar youth unemployment data "conjuring trick" might arguably have affected reporting of UK youth unemployment data. It remains vital that we always bear in mind what measures are taken into account when formulating youth unemployment data, and why. Follow Frances on Twitter.
- @EconomicsHelp: Trade Union Density in the UK
The always excellent Economics Help blog takes a close look at long-term trends in trade union density (which it defines as "the percentage of the workforce who belong to a trade union"), and the reasons for its ongoing decline. Their analysis includes the following fascinating tidbit on the impact of the rise in part-time working on union membership levels: "Traditionally, trade unions were stronger in permanent full time jobs. However, the gap between full-time and part time and between permanent and temporary is less than you might expect. Evidence trade unions have expanded into part time and temporary sectors." For more trends in union membership levels, see my recent XpertHR series: State of the Unions. Follow Economics Help on Twitter.
- Gautam Ghosh: Stories and Purposes for the HR Community
I really like the point Gautam makes here about how important it is that HR finds ways to tell stories with data: "Stories are not just entertaining - they are also tools for sensemaking of all the data and information we are inundated with. Stories are what adds meaning to experiences and gives us the space and time to step back and reflect." Follow Gautam on Twitter.
- Sharlyn Lauby: Data is everywhere
A lovely little post from the HR Bartender blog, in which Sharlyn Lauby conjures up a great metaphor for data overload: "The key isn't finding tons of data. It's finding the right data. Think of it as the difference between quenching your thirst with a glass of water and drinking through a fire hose. Being able to curate data is a necessary skill." Spot on about the key importance of data curation, Sharlyn! Follow Sharlyn on Twitter.
- John Philpott: HR - more big hats, cattle no more engaged or productive
Fascinating analysis of official data on broad trends in the numbers of people employed in HR and development roles over the past decade or so from independent economist John Philpott. This post is full of eye-opening findings. For example: "The number of 'big hat' HR honchos is thus around 14% higher and the level of HR staff in general almost a quarter (23.5%) higher than in 2001. The share of HR in total employment has likewise increased from 1.3% to 1.5%. This is great news for the HR profession but is also somewhat disconcerting. While HR employment has increased considerably in both absolute and relative terms in the past decade this hasn't had any discernible effect on outcome measures of things one might expect HR to have a positive influence on." Follow John on Twitter.
- Sarah Welfare: Are firms keeping employees on in the hope that things will get better?
Fascinating data analysis from my colleague Sarah Welfare on one of the most puzzling aspects of the labour market in 2012: Why has the labour market remained relatively resilient despite the fact that the economy is thought to still be 2.8% smaller than it was before the onset of recession at the start of 2008"? Follow Sarah on Twitter.
- China Gorman: HR is NOT 47 Year Old White Woman!
In this fascinating post, China Gorman analyses a new report on the gender profile of the US HR profession in 2012, and argues that the report should have been entitled: "HR is a 47 Year Old White Woman - Unless They're the CHRO of a Major Employer." She asks that if (as a separate 2011 report on this topic suggested) "67% of all HR professionals are women, then why aren't more of them moving into the top job?" XpertHR analysis from earlier this year suggested that in general, women tend to be most heavily concentrated at the lower levels of the profession. However, the representation of women at HR Director level ran counter to this trend. See: What is the gender profile of the UK HR profession in 2012?. Follow China on Twitter.
- Sharlyn Lauby: Top 5 Reasons Employees Leave Your Company
A very interesting piece from Sharlyn Lauby, looking at research comparing the views of HR on why employees leave jobs with those of jobseekers. As Sharlyn notes, the data presented here "illustrate how critical it is for us to truly understand why employees stay with the company and why they leave. And when asked the question, does the company really know?" Follow Sharlyn on Twitter.
- Charlie Judy: Analyze Your Workforce: People First, Numbers Second
Charlie asks (and answers) a great question in this post from this month's HR Technology Conference in Chicago (aka #HRTechConf): "Can you be a people person and a numbers person at the same time?" Charlie also provides a great definition of "big data": "Big data isn't just about data. It's about how you do something with it. It's about bringing data to life - making it jump from the page where it has sat for so many years and just stared back at us. If you can't draw conclusions, connect dots, or tell a story from the data you're giving, that data is dead." Brilliant post. If you want to read more about the key trends from this year's #HRTechConf, then check out XpertHR's social media overview of the event. Follow Charlie on Twitter.
- Employers increasing HR technology spend to boost growth
"Despite the obvious pressure on budgets over the past few years, many companies have decided that investment cannot be postponed any longer as HR departments face pressure to adapt and update the way services are delivered," says Mike DiClaudio of Towers Watson. Here, Personnel Today reports in detail on Towers Watson data looking at employers' HR technology spend. Click here to access the Towers Watson research.
- Analysis of XpertHR pay data sets lifetime pay gap at £423,390
Female executives in the UK can expect to face a "lifetime pay gap" of more than £423,390 when compared with earnings expectations for their male counterparts. This is according to analysis of XpertHR Salary Surveys data, conducted by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI).
- Are The US & UK 'Going Part-time'?
The latest labour market data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) brought some welcome news: unemployment has fallen; the youth unemployment rate has fallen back below the so-called "million milestone." However, closer analysis of the data suggests that we are seeing an ongoing change in employment patterns in the UK, with part-time work in particular showing very strong growth. Changing patterns of employment could be argued to be placing many UK workers in an increasingly less secure position. This trend towards a strong rise in part-time work would also appear to be present in latest US labour market data. So could it be the case that both the US and the UK are 'going part-time'? And what implications could this have for job security and for economic recovery on both sides of the pond?
- 10 Things We Love (And Hate) About HR
A very interesting infographic from sAP and NetBase. Are there any things that you either love or hate about HR that you'd like to see added to the list?
- Ready Or Not, Here Comes HR Analytics
"HR academic programs are evolving to include courses on statistics, so the HR professionals of tomorrow will enter the field with the necessary analytical skills. But for today's HR managers, analysts say self-education is critical to staying on top of the changing field." So says Emma Snider, in this thought-provoking post on the increasingly critical nature of HR skills for HR professionals.
- Why shrinking chocolate bars could contribute to the squeeze on living standards
It's often said that chocolate bars appear to be getting smaller than they were in the olden days. The response of the confectionery industry to such charges is often to suggest that it's actually down to your hands getting bigger as you grow up. But now official data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) confirm that chocolate bars really are shrinking. In turn, this unwelcome trend from the world of confectionery could be helping squeeze living standards in the UK.
XpertHR data round-up archive
Catch up with all the posts in XpertHR's data round-up series!
- HR data round-up December 2012: A less merry Christmas?
- HR data round-up November 2012: Who's afraid of HR data?
- HR data round-up October 2012: Overtime, HR benchmarking & the best HR data posts!
- HR data round-up September 2012: Back to basics on performance management?
- HR data round-up August 2012: Are we seeing a downward trend in absence rates?
- HR data round-up July 2012: Benchmarking planned redundancies
- HR data round-up June 2012: The costs and benefits of the 2012 Olympics
- HR data round-up May 2012: The changing ratios of HR to employees
- HR data round-up April 2012: IT pay trends; private sector pay forecasts & more!
- The HR data tapes: HR lifers; CIPD qualifications; workforce analytics, & more!
- HR data round-up March 2012: Tough times for graduates
- HR data round-up February 2012: Are employers losing the battle to combat work-related stress?
- HR data round-up January 2012: What is the ideal employee to HR ratio in 2012?
- HR data round-up, December 2011: Christmas working and minimum office temperatures
- HR data round-up November 2011: Why did you get into HR?
- HR data round-up October 2011: National minimum wage; HR data visualisation; & using HR data effectively
- HR data round-up September 2011: Benchmarking absence; social media ROI; & latest HR data blog posts
- HR data round-up July 2011: HR careers, absence & turnover
- XpertHR data round-up, June 2011: Company cars, commuting, benchmarking & labour disputes
- XpertHR data round-up, May 2011: HR benchmarking data, absence & hand-drawn charts