People analytics is a data-driven methodology of gathering, analyzing, and applying data from people processes, roles, functions, and tasks within a workplace to optimize performance and the overall employee experience.

Identified as one of LinkedIn’s 2020 Global Talent Trends, people analytics has become a popular and mainstream item within the HR Tech, performance management, and employee experience space. The trend is a continuation of the modern, “people first,” mentality—which suggests that providing today’s employees with more flexibility, autonomy, and balance leads to higher performance, retention, and revenue generation.

While the idea behind gathering and leveraging people-focused analytics is not new, the landscape has evolved drastically in recent years—with technology playing a major role in the way companies can get started, use people analytics, and improve the employee experience. One of the most notable evolutionary traits of people analytics over the last year or two, is the shift from leveraging prescriptive analytics—which provide clear guidance and help identify how to react to a situation—to predictive analytics which can help companies, managers, and employees stay ahead of problems, challenges, and opportunities proactively.

Why has People Analytics become a trend in 2020?

There is a dichotomous storyline within the people analytics arena. On one hand, you have large enterprise companies that have been collecting data around their people and putting that data to good use for several years. On the other hand, you have small and medium sized business who traditionally would not have had the budget, infrastructure, or data science teams in place to truly leverage a people analytics solution.

Now, more small and medium sized business are relying on cloud-based software, tools, and platforms to empower their distributed workforces to get work done where they want and when they want. With the advent of this next level of connectivity, teams and employees are generating more data than ever before.

This also gives platforms like Peoplelogic.ai, a unique opportunity to connect to the platforms your company is already using and to facilitate getting started deploying a true people analytics solution within an organization—in a matter of minutes. People analytics has become a trend in 2020, because for the first time, platforms like Peoplelogic are making people data accessible and actionable to anyone and everyone.

How Has People Analytics Changed Over the Last Few Years?

What we’re seeing is a dramatic shift from what type of data is being gathered, what type of insights can be gleaned from that data, and the way in which companies are making data-driven decisions. Historically, people analytics focused on purely HR-focused KPIs—things like recruitment, compensation, professional development, and retention.

Today, successful organizations still collect and analyze purely HR-focused data but it’s the ability to weave that together with performance metrics, productivity, engagement, and the overall employee experience that allows the world’s highest performing companies to develop a cohesive narrative around their data and make strategic decisions that are rooted in truth faster than ever before and quicker than their competition.

This shift has allowed businesses to connect the dots between what seemed like unconnected data—to identify correlations and insights that allow leaders to manage, predict, and optimize their workforces and the processes within their organization more effectively.

The Future of People Analytics

The future of people analytics is bright, with the key factor continuing to be accessibility. We’ve got to continue to make it easier to get started, to get insights, and to act upon statistically significant data. That power needs to be in everyone’s hands, everyone deserves that right. How do we ensure the democratization of the data and continue to empower more people within an organization to act upon data-driven management?

Simultaneously, organizations need to prioritize the education around data-driven, strengths-based leadership—which has been proven to increase retention, engagement, and performance—and provide their employees with the tools to become more effective leaders. Today, when more people are working remotely, the world is completely connected, and employees are accustomed to using several tools and platforms around communication and collaboration—a new toolkit is required to ensure success. The playbook of yesterday doesn’t work for the workforce of tomorrow.

With Peoplelogic.ai, your team can launch a true people analytics program in a matter of minutes, not months. Get started today with your first team free and start using data to ensure the alignment, development, and performance of teams and the people that make them.

This post first appeared on Peoplelogic.ai’s website here. Peoplelogic.ai are an exhibitor on the HRTech247 Employee Engagement and Startup Tech floors. You can visit their HRTech247 exhibition stand here.