Published on March 14, 2014
8 Reasons to STOP managing your people with spreadsheets
Everyone loves a good spreadsheet. But if you have more than a few hundred employees, tracking performance, training, and succession with them is the stuff of nightmares. Spreadsheets and paper-based processes can’t give you deep, real-time insight into how your faculty, staff, and administrators are performing or how to make them—and your campus—more successful. But a talent management system can. Our clients shared their reasons for making the switch from spreadsheet to software. Which one tops your list?
Streamlining your talent management data and increasing access not only saves administrative time—and dollars—but in the long run ensures faculty and staff have the skills to make real strategic contributions to campus success. Reason #1 We never had enough time. If you’re relying on spreadsheets to track competencies, compensation, and professional development, you’re also spending a lot of time finding and filing information. Manual tracking doubles your administrative workload—which leaves less time for your real raison d’etre: educating, engaging, and retaining students. Our clients find that a talent management (TM) system slashes the hours it takes to access employee data, which in turn reduces stress and saves money. The corporate arena is already on board with the many benefits of TM: studies show organizations using integrated talent technology see 26% higher revenue per employee. How can this translate to success in higher education? Streamlining your talent management data and increasing access not only saves administrative time—and dollars—but in the long run ensures faculty and staff have the skills to make real strategic contributions to campus success.
Reason #2 We needed to reduce data entry mistakes. With all the manual entry involved in spreadsheets and docs, mistakes are bound to happen. Plus, it’s difficult to track reviews and compensation plans that require approval from multiple people, and there’s always a risk of compliance snafus if you can’t prove professional development training has been completed. As your university grows, these problems can only get worse. And growth is a given: the National Center for Education Statistics projects a rise of 11 percent in enrollments of students under 25 and a rise of 20 percent in enrollments of students 25 and older from now until 2020.1 By ditching the spreadsheets and switching to a TM system now you can eliminate duplicate efforts and put the kibosh on human error. 1 Fast Facts, Institute of Education Sciences National Center for Education Statistics, US Department of Education, accessed on January 7, 2014, at http://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=98.
...integrating performance management with other elements of talent management can account for one-half of the variability in that organization’s performance. Reason #3 We couldn’t take action on our performance management results. Performance management and professional development planning should work in tandem. Yet creating learning opportunities from spreadsheets and annual reviews doesn’t ever really work, does it? Without a way to integrate performance with development, annual evaluations simply aren’t actionable. A TM system puts purpose and value back into the process. It links performance with recruiting, leadership development, learning, and compensation—from week to week, not year to year. As result, you get the whole picture, from how faculty goals align with university goals to who is ready for leadership now—and five years from now. Acting on performance data delivers truly tangible results: research shows the effectiveness of an organization at integrating performance management with other elements of talent management can account for one half of the variability in that organization’s performance.2 2 Talent Management Systems 2013: Market Analysis, Trends and Provider Profiles, p.9.
Reason #4 We couldn’t access talent, performance, and succession data quickly. Vanguard universities will want to pay close attention to the corporate arena’s success with TM: a study by Bersin found that while only 10% of survey respondents had implemented a TM system, the ones with such a system saw a 60% higher return.3 It takes time to compile employee information. Yet your board, president, dean, and everyone else on the executive team expect you to deliver that information in minutes. With a TM system, you can immediately access records, reviews, and succession opportunities. You’re always prepared for that next audit and ready to meet with your board at the drop of a hat. The result? Because you’re up to date on competency measurements and compliance training, you can worry less about regulatory fines. Because you can look across and into your entire organization to determine future leaders, you’re making better long-term decisions for the financial health and organizational longevity of your university. 3 Bersin & Associates Study of Corporate Talent Management Identifies Top 22 Processes Which Drive Business Impact, accessed January 7, 2014, at http://www.bersin.com/News/Content.aspx?id=4752.
Reason #5 We needed to be ready for enrollment and hiring increases. If you’re struggling with manual tracking now, imagine the paperwork you’ll have when your university grows. Higher enrollments means an increase in faculty and staff. Yet unfortunately, the number of spreadsheets and the rate of hiring have an ugly one-to-one relationship. Many clients sought us out when they began to grow and realized their manual processes simply wouldn’t be able to keep up. The right TM system will allow you to manage more employees and faster growth thanks to more efficiency around compliance tracking, succession planning, and recruiting–something spreadsheets simply weren’t designed to do.
Reason #6 We needed to retain our top talent to stay competitive. Your people are a powerful resource, and recognizing top talent is key to keeping them. Yet if you’re relying on paper-based tracking, you’ll never really know who your top talent is or what they’re contributing. With tools designed to identify and incentivize high performers, a TM system helps you hold onto your superstars. Research shows that organizations with a mature integrated talent approach have 40% lower turnover in high performers,4 news that’s great for universities already using—or ready to use—a TM system to engage and retain their best talent. 4 Bersin and Associates, Research Bulletin 2012, October 19, 2012, page 3. …organizations with a mature integrated talent approach have 40% lower turnover in high performers…
...organizations with an integrated talent approach have an 87% greater ability to ‘hire the best people.’ Reason #7 We needed to find the right talent quickly. Thanks to the growing skills scarcity, the fight for top talent can be brutal. Add the impending talent shortage thanks to the Baby Boomer exodus, and sourcing talent can feel like a scene out of the Hunger Games. Taking advantage of social recruiting is critical to nabbing the best and brightest new hires. Yet connecting candidate networks with career opportunities while capturing referrals can be difficult—unless you’re using a TM system. Organizations with an integrated talent approach have an 87% greater ability to “hire the best people.”5 A TM system helps you use your networks, social media, and employee referrals to find top faculty, staff, and administrators in less time—and with less paperwork. 5 Bersin, Talent Management Systems 2013: Market Analysis, Trends and Provider Profiles, p. 21.
Reason #8 We’re sick of slugging it out with our core HRIS/ERP provider. Love is a battlefield—and so is the talent management arena. Our clients who relied on HRIS/ERP systems found them good at payroll and recording information but woefully ineffective at talent-specific processes like identifying their next president, dean of students, or director of admissions. There’s a big difference between an HR generalist—most ERP providers—and a true TM specialist. Only a specialist’s tools are designed to help manage people’s engagement and performance in a simple, easy way, whereas clunky ERP solutions frustrate employees to the point they stop using them altogether. Our clients were relieved when they discovered they could get solutions that were both tailored for talent management and easily integrated into their existing HRIS/ERP.
csod-industry-brief-higher ed-2014 Spreadsheets can’t bridge the gap between people management and your campus’ goals. An integrated talent management system helps you find and keep the best talent, plan for succession, and spend less time on data gathering—and more time on strategies for student success. But where do you start? Check out Cornerstone. For more than a decade we’ve helped 1,500 clients source, develop, and retain their talent with tools that are both powerful and easy to use. Start the conversation at csod.com. More than 1,500 organizations around the globe rely on Cornerstone OnDemand’s specialized integrated talent management suite to recruit top talent, manage performance, plan for succession, and deliver professional development opportunities. Find out more by visiting csod.com
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