HR Florida


Florida State Council Affiliate of SHRM

Winning an Unfair Game With People Analytics

By Steve Lowisz 

Everywhere you look, companies are suffering from a lack of talent and low engagement. Most companies are struggling to hire all of the qualified talent they need to succeed. Adding insult to injury is the fact that retention and engagement are at all-time lows…meaning most companies are getting even LESS value from new hires! 

Ask anyone why this is happening, and you’ll hear no shortages of excuses:

“It’s all because of COVID and remote work!” 

“People just don’t want to work today.” 

“It’s because Millennials and Gen Z don’t have the same work ethic.” 

But what if I told you these are all just lame excuses? What if the problem starts with how we recruit? 

Taking a Moneyball Approach to Recruiting and RETAINING Great Talent 

The 2011 movie Moneyball covered how the Oakland A’s leveraged data analytics to defy the odds and build a successful team with very limited resources.  

General manager Billy Beane took over as general manager in 1997. Five years later, the Athletics became the first team in the American League’s 100+ year history to win 20 consecutive games. By 2006, the Oakland A’s had the 5th best regular-season record – even though they ranked 24th out of 30 teams in player salaries. 

How did they do it?  

By making recruiting decisions based on data and the player’s ability to deliver RESULTS above all else.  After crunching the numbers, Billy Beane and his team realized that they could get far more value from new recruits by picking players based on totally different metrics than the metrics used by every other team. 

Are You Recruiting Based on Outdated Metrics? 

We have a similar situation in business today. Companies are recruiting candidates based on all sorts of outdated metrics that have no relevance to their performance on the job – yet we wonder why expensive hires fail, quit, or underperform! 

Consider years of experience. Experience is great – but haven’t we all met an all-star that started delivering amazing results after only a year or two? 

On the flip side, we’ve all worked with someone with lots of experience who either coasts or never quite excelled in their role. 

Few metrics are more outdated than education. For some roles, like a lawyer or surgeon, a degree is vital. But for many jobs, a degree has no relevance to the job at hand! Thankfully, many companies are waking up to this foolishness. 

Finding Budget Candidates That Will Thrive for the Long-Haul at Your Company 

So if the traditional methods to evaluate candidates don’t work, how can we do better? 

The first – and easiest – is to look at a candidate’s record of results. 

Forget experience, education, or certifications – look at a candidate’s ability to meet and exceed goals and expectations. If they’ve done it before, there’s a pretty good chance they’ll be able to do it for your company too! However, if you’re serious about maximizing your recruiting success, you’ll have to dig deeper and leverage analytics. 

Using Data to Predict Which Candidates Will Excel in Your Open Roles 

Today’s forward-thinking companies are using powerful people analytics tools to actually PREDICT how well certain candidates will perform at their organization. With the Predictive Index, companies can uncover what drives each of their candidates in the workplace during the interview process. As an example, this platform allows them to understand which candidates will thrive in a self-directed role versus those who will excel with lots of supervision and direction.  

Likewise, by assessing existing employees with the tool, you can hire candidates that will complement existing team members, rather than clashing or fighting over the wheel. This is invaluable for making sure new hires align with their team, as well as the organization as a whole and your company’s goals. 

Say your company is focusing on innovation. To achieve this goal, you’ll need individuals who are very comfortable with risk in key leadership positions. The Predictive Index allows you to identify which candidates are comfortable with risk, and which will avoid it whenever possible. 

With the Predictive Index, you can go a step further and hire candidates whose natural behavior in the workplace will align with your goals and team. 

Perception Predict is another revolutionary tool for any role where success can be quantifiably measured, like sales or customer service. Perception Predict allows companies to analyze their current team and identify traits that correlate – or negatively correlate – with success in each role.  As a result, you can hire salespeople and predict with 80% accuracy how much revenue they will drive on your team, for your leaders, in your unique selling environment! 

Enough of the Blame Game 

Everyone is so quick to play the blame game when it comes to recruiting and retention. 

Enough is enough! Rather than blaming outside factors, take a look at your process and identify ways to improve. 

There are proven tools and approaches you can use right here, right now to reduce costs in recruiting and make hires that will actually stick around and succeed at your company.  So what are you waiting for? It’s time to quit making excuses and take back control! 

Steve Lowisz is a successful entrepreneur, author, TEDx, keynote speaker, educator, trainer, and professional coach on all things talent, personal development, and business leadership. Best known as the Founder and CEO of Qualigence International since 1999, Steve is a six-time entrepreneur with over three decades of practical business experience.

Steve prides himself on tailoring every speaking engagement to educate the audience, regardless of the topic.  His speaking experience ranges from start-ups to Fortune 500 companies, including Starbucks, Dawn Foods, Bissell, Coca-Cola, Cisco Systems, Whirlpool, and more. Steve is a contributor to the Forbes Human Resource Council and the founder of the HR Executive Council.