In a marketplace fueled by intangible assets, anything less than optimal workforce performance can threaten a firm's very survival. Yet in most organizations, workforce capabilities are both poorly managed and underutilized.
The Workforce Scorecard argues that to maximize the strategic contribution of the workforce, organizations must meet three challenges: view their workforce in terms of its potential contribution rather than as a cost to be minimized (the perspective challenge); replace benchmarking metrics with measures that differentiate levels of strategic impact (the metrics challenge); and hold line managers and HR professionals jointly responsible for workforce quality and strategy execution (the execution challenge).
To make this happen, our main thesis in The Workforce Scorecard is that managers and leaders need a strategy for the business, a strategy for the workforce, and a strategy for the HR function. As a result, they also need a series of metrics and measures for each; a balanced scorecard, a workforce scorecard, and an HR scorecard, respectively.
Designing such a system begins with a clear understanding of the unique processes through which the workforce creates value in each business. The Workforce Scorecard offers a framework that identifies and measures the outcomes, behaviors, competencies, mind-set, and culture required for workforce success and reveals how each dimension impacts the bottom line. The lynchpin of this perspective is an emphasis on looking at the role of human capital from the “outside in” (or customer back), not from the “inside out” (starting with the HR function).
The Workforce Scorecard has four key elements:
- The first element is Workforce Success. Here the key question is: Has the workforce accomplished the key strategic objectives for the business?
- The second element is Leadership and Workforce Behaviors. Are the leadership team and workforce consistently behaving in a way that will lead to achieving our key strategic objectives? Have we identified and nurtured “A” Players in “A” Positions?
- The third element is Workforce Competencies. Does the workforce, especially in the key or “A” positions, have the skills it needs to execute strategy?
- Finally, the fourth element is Workforce Mindset and Culture. Does the workforce understand the strategy, embrace it, and do we have the culture we need to support strategy execution?
The Workforce Scorecard: Managing Human Capital to Execute Strategy (with Brian Becker & Dick Beatty) was published in 2005 by the Harvard Business School Press. It has been translated into numerous languages, and has generated numerous speaking engagements (including many keynote addresses) from academic and professional organizations throughout the world.
The files at right capture some of the key concepts presented in The Workforce Scorecard.
Our books have been translated into multiple languages and are international best sellers.