This past week, I had conversations with 9 CEO’s of large South African Corporates (5 of them listed on the JSE) and only two of them grasped the critical need for People Analytics. Yes, 2 out of 9 CEO’s believe People Analytics is worth investing in. From experience, I can say that this small sample is roughly representative of the South African landscape. Whenever I’m asked to deliver a Keynote Address on People Analytics, I make it a point to understand the current capabilities within the delegates’ companies. More of then than not, most delegates have not even started implementing People Analytics in any form, while a large number do not even have the basic HR systems in place to enable data analysis.
So, if most South African CEO’s clearly do not believe in People Analytics, why the big fuss over this globally?
Yet, CEO’s have no real-time information about how happy their employees are, or which employees are likely to leave next, or what the skills gap are between current skills and skills needed to implement the current business strategy. How ironic, since most companies profess that people are their most important asset. I think it is time that we all call out these CEO’s for their hypocrisy…
Looking at all these facts, I have one thing to say to South African CEO’s: You have a choice between two options. Option 1: Invest in People Analytics now and watch your bottom-line grow. Option 2: Keep ignoring the power of People Analytics and try explaining to your shareholders in 5 years’ time why your peers are outperforming you on every business metric. The choice is yours.