Leading with People Analytics is designed to help students, in their role as general managers, learn how to use data to improve employee-related decisions and practices. The premise of the course is that effective leaders must understand how data can be used (and misused) to leverage people’s skills, talents, and insights. This premise is at the heart of the rapidly evolving field of people analytics, which organizations are embracing as they use data to inform every aspect of employee life.

In the course, students build hands-on skills by analyzing and interpreting data in ways that complement the frameworks and intuitions that normally guide managerial actions. By learning how to apply data-driven approaches, students will 1) come to appreciate the opportunities, limits, and tensions involved in using employee data, 2) gain deeper insight into the business issues in question, and 3) sharpen their ability to think critically through the lens of rigorous analytics.

Latest Assignment

LPA Blog Assignment

April 06, 2020

Read The Full Prompt

Organizations, from startups to multinationals to non-profits to sports teams, are using employee data in new and exciting ways. They are typically trying to improve efficiency, performance, or both, leading to a variety of intended and unintended consequences. Using employee data in new ways often has important implications for employee privacy, company transparency, ethics, and organizational culture.

Your assignment is to identify an article, blog post, or other public source of information about an issue related to People Analytics. This could be a description of an organization’s use of employee data in a particular way, commentary about the field as a whole, an opinion on a particular practice related to People Analytics, or anything else that is relevant to the field. For examples of articles related to the course, visit the PeopleAnalytics@Harvard website.

Write your own reaction to your chosen article in the form of a short blog post. What is your point of view about the issues in question? Are you a proponent? A skeptic? Does your article describe a particularly effective use of data that should be emulated by other organizations? Or do you think it describes an ineffective or troublesome practice? You should go beyond simply describing what is in the article and articulate your own point of view on the topic.

Create an approximately 600-word post to make your contribution on digital.hbs.edu by 6pm on Monday, April 6. Please include a link to the material you write about. Feel free to use graphics, data, videos, and links to other sites to corroborate your points.

After posting your own blog, please comment on three posts by other students by 6pm on Tuesday, April 14. Selected posts will be discussed in class.

If you have any problems with the digit.hbs.org platform, please email diplatform@hbs.edu for help, and visit the digital platform resources page for helpful advice.

Submitted (57)

Trusted Partners or the Machine?
Toni Campbell & Oliver Badenhorst
Last modified on April 15, 2020 at 6:57 pm
In our first class this semester, back in the halcyon days of our pre-quarantine innocence, Professor Polzer posed a question: Are employees trusted partners in a mission or cogs in a machine? Though we have discussed and debated, pondered and [...]
Googlegeist – An inconvenient truth
Viet Nguyen
Last modified on April 14, 2020 at 12:56 am
Googlegeist is a great initiative to gather feedback and seek the truth, but two questions remain: (a) can we trust the truth from this survey?; and (b) does this truth lead to meaningful resolutions?
Closing the gap between People Analytics and Workforce Development
DSR Section I
Last modified on April 16, 2020 at 10:17 am
There’s an interesting phenomenon where adjacent fields or industries adopt their own vocabularies and ideas around solving essentially the same problems. A simple example is econometrics and data science – listening to an economist and computer scientist speak about these [...]