Talent Circles

Thursday, July 11, 2013

3 Ways Business Leaders Can Measure the Success of Human Capital at Your Workplace



By Jessica Miller-Merrell

As recruiters and business leaders, I’ve said that we must hire and recruit for employees for jobs that have yet to be invented. There’s a lot of controversy on measuring human capital or even calling employees human capital, as it is not measured accurately on the balance sheet and other financial statements. Great workplace performance is often intangible.

Where is human capital measured on financial statements and where does the human element of your workforce come into play? These are the kind of things I think as part of my workday. All managers, HR and business leaders should be too. In fact there are questions that should be keeping you up at night.
  • How do I measure hiring, employment and human capital success?
  • What do I need to do to continue recruiting, training and developing employees for the long term?

Employees and Employers Reinventing Work

As an employee, the best way to protect yourself from being outsourced is by making yourself indispensible. The challenge lies in determining what being indispensible actually is, how to revive the workplace artist in you and if your business leaders will recognize your place once you become what Seth Godin refers to as a linchpin at work.

Measuring the Value of Human Capital

Simply put, human capital is hard to measure. Since there is no one size fits all to determining the value of your employees, it’s critical that employers focus on measuring the value of their workforce in four distinct key areas. The combined analysis will begin to help demonstrate the true value of those indispensible employees.

  • Employee survey results and regular focus group meetings. Studies show that workplace leaders that are well liked and humble bring out the best in their employees. Measuring employee satisfaction ratings should be directly tied to employee turnover, absences and productivity.
  • Online social activities and peer recognition of employees. Do others see this employee or employees as a valuable internal resource in ways your manager’s may have missed? Think Klout for the workplace.
  • Performance metrics and goals met by department, division or region. We need to start tying performance to more than just results. Results happen when employees are motivated to perform by team as well as country and geographic region.
  • The future of how we view the workplace starts with business leaders like you. By reinventing how we measure employees, we can truly understand how they impact the success of our business.


Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR is a workplace and technology strategist specializing in social media. She’s an author who writes at Blogging4Jobs. You can follow her on Twitter @blogging4jobs

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