Alice: “Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
Cheshire Cat: “That depends a good deal on where you want to get to.”
Alice: “I don’t much care where –”
Cheshire Cat: “Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.”
Sometimes when making decisions, we just wish someone would tell us the best way to go. And in HR, we make a lot of decisions. Each of those decisions—whether they’re about benefits, pay, hiring or HR initiatives—impact every person in the company in a very real way. That’s why all the decisions we make matter so much. And since there isn’t a magical pink cat to point us in the right direction, it’s vital that we have the tools to make decisions most effectively. Reports can help you do just that. Here’s how:
Trends: You can make decisions based on hunches, or you can base them on data-backed trends. It’s much easier to see hiring trends when they’re displayed in reports like this:
Forecasting: Those trends also let you forecast predictions for the future (no crystal ball necessary). And if you can make decisions that prevent problems for the future in your company, you just might get a little more appreciation.
Accuracy: How much easier would it be if you could simply pull a report of all the birth dates (or any other piece of information) of employees to make sure they’re accurate? Reports provide a more convenient way to double-check information, which means it’s easier to stay accurate. And it’s much easier to feel confident in data-backed decisions when you’re sure the data is accurate.
Collaboration: Sometimes you want to collaborate on decisions, but without clean reports, it’s difficult for others to understand. Reports provide a clean data snapshot that make it easier to share information with people.
Evidence: Having reports to back up your decision makes any case you’re trying to make more than circumstantial. It makes it undeniable. And if the decisions you make don’t get results, you’ll have a better reason than “it felt right” to back up why you did what you did.
Measurement: Reports can help you track the success of your initiatives. Did a concerted reward and recognition effort in one department result in a noticeable hike in performance over the past year? Did retention tank after getting rid of the free lunch benefit? Knowing what’s working and what isn’t will help you decide what to keep doing and what to scrap.
You have a lot of decisions to make, and those decisions have big impacts on the biggest asset your company has. Reports help you make better decisions by illustrating trends that help you forecast for the future. You’ll be able to collaborate with others and support your decisions using data-backed reports. And after those decisions are made, reports help you measure their effects. It’s time for HR to prove the magnitude of their job, and making informed decisions is a great place to start. Give yourself the tools you need to make the best decisions possible.
Interested in better reporting tools? Check out BambooHR!