How Dell is using big data to engage employees

The computer technology company’s head of global talent acquisition provides insights into how Dell is making smarter decisions

How Dell is using big data to engage employees

The main way Dell is using big data is in trying to determine the best fit for key roles, according to the computer technology company’s head of global talent acquisition, Marie Moynihan.

 “What we’re doing is taking the myriad of data sources that we have on team members, and our data scientists are then correlating that data with psychometric profiles that we ask candidates or team members to complete,” said Moynihan

Sales roles are a good example. Dell is looking at things like time to proficiency, revenue and margin attainment, retention, and then we correlate that with psychometric profiles to identify if there are particular traits that lead people to be more successful in our environment. 

“We’ve also done some interesting work linking employee engagement with customer satisfaction and overall sales performance,” said Moynihan.

That has helped a lot to convince the broader leadership in the company of the value of employee engagement and in particular the impact of inspirational leaders.

“We can show that people who work for inspiring leaders have higher sales attainment. So that hard data is making it much easier to get leaders to internalise the culture and behaviours we’re looking for as a company.”

Moynihan outlines what has worked for her team at Dell and how the company’s employees are engaging with social media:

  1. Engage your employees in storytelling. “Make it authentic, real, gritty. The corporate videos you see on the corporate website are great, but they don’t tend to perform well on social. You want short, snackable content, ideally either video-based or at least with an image – that’s what performs best on social.”
  2. Tap into the reach of your employees. “When you develop this content, engage your employees to help promote it and put it out there. They all have contacts in the talent pool you’re after, and people are much more likely to look at something sent by a friend than from a corporate handle.”
  3. Choose your platform with care. “If you look at platforms like Facebook, it’s now really an area where you need to pay to play to get decent attraction. The organic content isn’t really performing there any more. On Twitter I would say images perform better; people aren’t really searching Twitter for videos or articles. They are looking more for the bite-sized testimonial with an image. Instagram is actually a great place for employee-generated content.”
  4. Customise your content. “You’ll need to make sure it’s locally relevant. If you’re looking to attract people in Brazil, you’ll need to have local team members speaking Portuguese that people can relate to – otherwise it’s a waste.”
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