Data Analysis Could Flag Unsatisfied Employees

Software Uses 'Big Data' To Pre-Empt Resignations

07.01.2015

New software that uses "big data"-style analysis could tip bosses off about employees who are thinking of moving on.

Joberate takes a number of factors into account, including people's online activity and behaviour on social media, the industry's stock market performance, and new vacancies to flag up potential employee retention problems early.

The Times reports that the software aggregates these data points and factors them into a score that can suggest to a manager, or alternatively a recruitment agency, that an employee is considering leaving their post.

Meanwhile, Workday analyses data within a company, including promotions, job cuts and satisfaction surveys to reveal which actions prompt employees to go on leave.

The companies hope that managers will use this data to take action and persuade individuals to stay.

"Retention is a big problem, it costs companies hundreds of billions of dollars globally every year," Michael Beygelman, chief executive of Joberate, told The Times.

"The cost to replace an employee can average anything between 10 to 30 per cent of their salary."

Expert Opinion
The rise in social media activity means more and more people are publishing content and views in the public domain, often without realising who is able to access and view what they are posting.

“As a result, it is perhaps unsurprising to see tools of this form emerge, with the aim of allowing employers to better track not only what their workers are saying but also whether they are planning to move on. Such intelligence could of course be a vital tool for employers who are looking at the issue of staff retention and are keen to keep hold of their top performers albeit at that stage, it may be too late to do anything about it if the employee is in advanced talks with a new employer. The loss of such performers may not only be costly to replace, but in the absence of enforceable restrictive covenants governing what they can do post termination could lead to an expensive loss of business.

“The flipside however is whether the use of such tools has a negative impact on how employees view those above them within an organisation – perhaps feeling that such monitoring impacts on their privacy in some way. This however can be managed by a sensible employer.

“It would be worth employers bearing some legal issues in mind when making use of these systems, such as how staff are monitored and whether they are notified such monitoring is taking place to avoid any data protection breaches and claims for constructive dismissal, highlighting to staff the stance that is taken by the company in respect of restrictive covenants and ensuring covenants are properly in force, as well as considering their pay, benefits and staff satisfaction ratings generally to ensure that staff do not look elsewhere.”
Glenn Hayes, Partner