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Like every business department these days, HR is awash in Big Data. But, as Carol Anderson, a leading human resources expert, writes on Human Capitalist, the analytics HR teams are using aren't all that useful.

"Time and again," she writes, "I have watched HR professionals spend an inordinate amount of time defending their data to leaders and employees who don't believe that the data is credible."

Anderson's advice? Stop obsessing about Big Data, and start focusing on Good Data. Here's how:

Ask End-User Questions at the Beginning

“An excellent place to start is, as usual, at the end. Key questions to consider: What data do leaders and executives need to understand organizational performance and leadership strength? How useful is the current data being provided? How accurate?”

Review Current Data

“Now, armed with the knowledge of what is important, it’s time for a candid review of the current state of data. Who inputs the data and how is the integrity of the data ensured? Where are there inconsistencies in the data? Why do they exist (you may need to push beyond the 'because we need it')? Can we provide the data that the leaders need in a timely and accurate manner? If we find gaps, what data is the priority to address?”

Employ Teams to Get the Job Done

“Pull together small cross-functional teams to complete the analysis and revise the data processes. Break the work into small chunks, and give the teams the challenge to eliminate inconsistencies, and recommend a process to ensure data quality.”

Read the full article here.