HR scorecard – making it last


Change is more likely to happen when a change effort garners early success, builds in continuous learning about what is working and what is not, adapts to changing conditions, celebrates progress, and can be integrated with other work For doing all of this, one must make ongoing investments in the HR Scorecard. Here are some hints for making the scorecard last:


Many companies face a dilemma: Should they invest in developing a complete, fully researched, and comprehensive HR Scorecard that takes months to develop? Or should they limit the effort to just those measures that let them evaluate critical capabilities right away, based on available data? We suggest choosing the option that lets you rack up some early successes, even if they’re relatively small in scope. For some firms, this might mean running simultaneous experiments to identify which HR data exert the most impact on business results. It might also mean experimenting with various tracking methods (e.g. should you measure employee commitment by a pulse check, retention, or productivity?) and seeing which method best predicts business results. Having internal case studies that specifically demonstrate which HR data influence business success builds credibility for the entire Scorecard process.


Once they establish the HR Scorecard, the initiative team should remain intact. As the company continues to use the Scorecard, these team members will need to continue to update and modify it. In addition, the firm should make regular investments, in the form of data collection, people, and money in order to ensure that the Scorecard remains robust, up to date, and relevant.


The Balanced Scorecard works because it measures all the dimensions relevant to a firm’s success. Likewise, the HR Scorecard should be integrated with other measures of managerial success. To illustrate, a meeting in which participants examine the links among HR, customer, investor, and business process measures is far more valuable than one in which attendees focus only on HR measures. The more a company can integrate its HR Scorecard with existing and ongoing measurement efforts, the more sustainable the Scorecard will be.


With any change effort, you need to conduct periodic check-ups to examine what is and what is not working. Likewise, make a commitment to examine HR Scorecard effort every six or twelve months. During these assessments, the Scorecard team should answer questions such as the following:

* What has worked in the HR Scorecard initiative to date?
* What hasn’t worked? What explains any lack of success? Were data not available, not collected, and not tied to results, not monitored, not part of existing management practices?
* What can we do differently, based on our experiences so far with this initiative?

Addressing these questions on a regular basis, the HR Scorecard will become increasingly ingrained in the management process.

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