This was the advice I gave to a friend of mine on her resume when she asked what could be improved.
We always come back to Return on Investment (ROI), and quite rightly so, as it’s really important. Whatever your organisation’s mission and whatever your personal motivation, it’s perfectly normal to demand that products and business initiatives deliver value back, otherwise why would we run them?
But it's time to change our thinking, at least a little bit.
It’s not (all) about the money, money, money
As my good friend Jessie J says, there are other forms of currency than just money. And I think she's got a point.
‘Value’ in itself is a huge concept, however, part of the problem I’ve come across, is that we always think value means cold hard cash. When it comes to employees within your business, they are so much more complex than that.
The example of my friend and her CV showed me how easily we try and highlight the tangible results, and it is especially hard to show those when you don’t work in a sales or another targeted role.
When you’ve got your reporting hat on, it’s easy to forget that we’re dealing with actual human people in our workforce, not just a turnover count or an average training spend per head.
It seems shortsighted to me, if you were to measure solely with analytics, you’d miss out on all the great value your staff are bringing, over and above their statistical usefulness!
How about the engaged employee who refers a friend to come and work for you? Yes, you could calculate the saving of recruitment agency fees or the time saved with fewer questions asked during onboarding as they already know a bit about the company, but you’d really be limiting your measurements.
It's time we celebrate the human side of your people
As an ambitious and driven HR professional, you’ll always need to look at the numbers and likely report on them regularly. In doing so, don’t let that take away from all the other personal, individual and positive impacts your people have all over the business and make sure you celebrate those as often as you can!
How are you balancing the values your own employees bring?
Sarah is our former Head of Diversity and People Experience. She's obsessed with making RG a happier place to work, holds the proud title of our No. 1 Beyoncé fan and is an expert on holiday planning and spreadsheets.