Global Talent Challenges of Implementing New HR Metric Discussion Discussion: Global Talent “It’s too expensive!” “Sorry, we cannot afford it at this tim

Global Talent Challenges of Implementing New HR Metric Discussion Discussion: Global Talent

“It’s too expensive!”

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“Sorry, we cannot afford it at this time.”

“We have always done it this way; why change? This works just as well.”

Statements like these are often reasons new HR metrics are supported. For organizations to support the use of new HR metrics, there needs to be context so the value can be seen and the support can be given.

For example, it is not enough to say that the turnover rate has remained fairly low since the implementation of a new HR initiative. Strategic partners need more context in order to see the value. Has turnover decreased since last year or since the 1990s, and by how much? Or, is the turnover rate currently lower than the chief competitor? The measurement is only valuable if it is relevant and aligns with the organization’s strategic goals. Being aware of the common challenges of implementing new HR metrics can help HR professionals prepare to overcome these challenges.

With these thoughts in mind:


Post a cohesive and scholarly response based on your readings and research this week that addresses the following:

How you might overcome at least one of the common challenges of implementing a new HR metric? For example:
High investment
Continued use of legacy metrics
Accessibility of value-added metrics
Provide 2-3 examples from the literature or your experience that have shown successful in overcoming one of these common challenges.
Be specific, and provide examples with references to the literature provided or literature you find.
APA Format perceptual
Why Most Dashboards Fail
Stephen Few, Perceptual Edge
Author of Information Dashboard Design: The Effective Visual Communication of Data
Rise of the Dashboard
Dashboards can provide a powerful solution to information
overload, but only when they are properly designed. Most
dashboards that are used in businesses today fail. At best they
deliver only a fraction of the insight that is needed to monitor
the business. This is a travesty, because effective dashboard
design can be achieved by following a small set of visual design
principles that can be easily learned.
graphical luster, despite the fact that displays of this type usually
say little, and what they manage to say, they say poorly. Only
those who cut through the hype and learn practical dashboard
design skills will produce dashboards that actually work.
Several circumstances have recently merged to allow dashboards to bring real value to the workplace. These circumstances include technologies such as high-resolution graphics,
emphasis since the 1990s on performance management and
“Most dashboards that are used in businesses today fail. At best they deliver only
a fraction of the insight that is needed to monitor the business.”
Let me back up a little and put this in context. Few phenomena
characterize our time more uniquely and pervasively than the
rapid rise and influence of information technologies. These technologies have unleashed a tsunami of data that rolls over and
flattens us in its wake. Taming this beast has become a primary
goal of the information industry. One tool that has emerged from
this effort in recent years is the dashboard. This single-screen
display of the most important information needed to do a job,
designed for rapid monitoring, is a powerful new medium of data
presentation. At least it can be, but only when properly designed.
Most dashboards that are used in business today, however, fall
far short of their potential.
metrics, and a growing recognition of visual perception as a
powerful channel for information acquisition and comprehension.
Dashboards offer a unique solution to the problem of information
overload, not a complete solution by any means, but one that
can help a lot. Much of the problem can be traced back to the
vendors that develop and sell dashboard products. They work
hard to make their dashboards shimmy with sex appeal. They
taunt, “You don’t want to be the only company in your neighborhood without one, do you?” They whisper sweetly, “Still haven’t
achieved the expected return on investment (ROI) from your
expensive data warehouse? Just stick a dashboard in front of
it and watch the money pour in.” Those gauges, meters, and
“…beyond the hype and sizzle lives a unique and effective solution to a very real need
for information. This is the dashboard that deserves to live on your screen.”
The root of the problem is not technology—at least not primarily—but poor data presentation. To serve their purpose and
fulfill their potential, dashboards must display a dense array of
information in a small amount of space in a manner that communicates clearly and immediately. This requires design that
taps into and leverages the power of visual perception and the
human brain to sense and process several chunks of information rapidly. This can only be achieved when the visual design
of dashboards is central to the development process and is informed by a solid understanding of visual perception and human
cognition—what works, what doesn’t, and why. No technology
can do this for you. Someone must bring design expertise to the
Dashboards are unique in several exciting and useful ways, but
despite the hype surrounding them, surprisingly few present information effectively. People believe that dashboards must look
flashy, filled with eye-catching gauges and charts, sizzling with
traffic lights are so damn cute, but their appeal is only skin deep.
Rather than creating a demand for superficial flash, vendors
ought to be learning from the vast body of information visualization research that already exists, and then developing and
selling tools that actually work. Rest assured that beyond the
hype and sizzle lives a unique and effective solution to a very
real need for information. This is the dashboard that deserves to
live on your screen.
The Dashboard Design Challenge
The fundamental challenge of dashboard design is to display all
the required information on a single screen:
• clearly and without distraction
• in a manner that can be quickly examined and understood
Think about the cockpit of a commercial jet. Years of effort went
into its design to enable the pilot to see what’s going on at a
Copyright © 2007 Stephen Few, Perceptual Edge
glance, even though there is much information to monitor. Every
time I board a plane, I’m grateful that knowledgeable designers
worked hard to present this information effectively. Similar care
is needed for the design of our dashboards. This is a science
that few of those responsible for creating dashboards have
The process of visual monitoring involves a series of sequential
steps that the dashboard should be designed to support. The
user should begin by getting an overview of what’s going on and
quickly identifying what needs attention. Next, the user should
look more closely at each of those areas that need attention to
be able to understand them well enough to determine if something should be done about them. Lastly, if additional details are
needed to complete the user’s understanding before deciding
how to respond, the dashboard should serve as a seamless
launch pad to that information, and perhaps even provide the
means to initiate automated responses, such as sending emails
to those who should take action.
good or bad? Are we on track? Is this better than before? The
right context for the key measures makes the difference between
numbers that just sit there on the screen and those that enlighten and inspire action.
Quantitative scales on a graphic, such as those suggested
by the tick marks around these gauges, are meant to help us
interpret the measures, but they can only do so when scales
are labeled with numbers, which these gauges lack. Many of
the visual attributes of these gauges, including the eye-catching
lighting effects that are used to make them look like real gauges,
tell us nothing whatsoever.
Now take a look at an example below, taken from a small
section of a dashboard that I designed. It includes methods of
display that are probably unfamiliar, so let me take a moment to
introduce them to you. The lines in the column labeled “Past 12
months” are called sparklines. They enhance what is often displayed using trend arrows by actually showing changes through
“Elegance in communication is often achieved through simplicity of design.”
Clearly presenting everything on a single screen requires a
careful design and conscious planning; even the slightest lack of
organization will result in a confusing mess. You must condense
the information, you must include only what you absolutely need,
and you must use display media that can be easily read and
understood. Most dashboard software features display media
that “look marvelous” but communicate little. If the information
you need is obscured by visual fluff or is delivered in fragments,
the dashboard fails. Anything that doesn’t add meaning to the
data must be thrown out, especially those flashy visual effects
that have become so popular despite their undermining affect on
communication. Elegance in communication is often achieved
through simplicity of design. This is certainly true of dashboards.
Seeing Is Believing
Rather than trying to convince you with words, let me show you
what I mean. Here is a series of three gauges, which I extracted
from a sample dashboard that was created using the most popular dashboard product available today:
time in the ups and downs of a line—in this case 12 months of
data. They provide historical context for what’s happening now.
The small charts in the “% of Target” column are called bullet
graphs. I created these to replace the gauges and meters that
are typically used in dashboards with a richer form of display
that requires much less space. The prominent horizontal bar
is the metric, the small vertical line is a comparative measure
(a target in this case), and the varying intensities of gray in the
background indicate the qualitative states of poor, satisfactory,
and good. The small red icon that appears next to Profit makes
it easy to spot this item, which urgently needs your attention. Because no colors other than blacks and grays appear anywhere
in the display other than the red icon, nothing distracts you from
quickly finding what needs your attention most, with nothing
more than a glance.
Key Metrics YTD
Past 12 Months
% of Target
Avg Order Size
On Time Delivery
New Customers
Cust Satisfaction
Market Share
Let’s focus only on the center gauge for a moment. If you relied
on this gauge to monitor the current state of quarter-to-date
sales, the value 7,822 YTD units, without additional context
would tell you little. Compared to what? Assuming that you
understand that a green needle on the gauge means that this
value is good (and you are not color blind, which 10% of men
and 1% of women are), your next question ought to be, how
Rather than only three metrics, which appear in the previous
example, this example displays seven key metrics, and each has
been enriched with historical context and compared to performance targets, all in roughly the same amount of space. I hope
that this single is enough to show that there is a world of difference between dashboards that look flashy and those that give
you the information that you need at a glance. For the full story, I
invite you to read my book, Information Dashboard Design: The
Effective Visual Communication of Data, or to visit my website at
Copyright © 2007 Stephen Few, Perceptual Edge

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