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The ROI of Human Capital: Measuring the Economic Value of Employee Performance
     

The ROI of Human Capital: Measuring the Economic Value of Employee Performance

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by Jac Fitz-enz
 

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The lifeblood of any business enterprise is its people. Yet it wasn’t until the publication of the groundbreaking book The ROI of Human Capital that there was a reliable way to quantify the contributions of people to corporate profit. Completely updated with new metrics, the book shows executives and HR professionals how to gauge human costs and

Overview

The lifeblood of any business enterprise is its people. Yet it wasn’t until the publication of the groundbreaking book The ROI of Human Capital that there was a reliable way to quantify the contributions of people to corporate profit. Completely updated with new metrics, the book shows executives and HR professionals how to gauge human costs and productivity at three critical levels:

organizational (contributions to corporate goals) • functional (impact on process improvement) • human resources management (value added by five basic HR department activities)

The second edition contains new material on topics including corporate outsourcing, developments in behavioral science, and advances in trending and forecasting that have dramatically changed the way organizations measure the bottom line effect of employee performance. Utterly up-to-date, this is the go-to resource for organizations performing the essential task of measuring the value of their people.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“If you want to create a greater return on your investments in your human capital, this book is an important read for the Human Resource professional.” — About.com/HR

GetAbstract.com
...is absorbing and a pleasure to read.
HR Magazine
…an important new business book….The ROI of Human Capital will serve as an excellent reference and guidebook for HR professionals and business leaders, especially CEOs and CFOs, who need to understand how HR contributes to their bottom line. It can serve as a roadmap for HR professionals who want to plan their organizational strategy in a way that will be embraced by the executive team. This work will be invaluable as a framework for executive dialog on HR issues.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780814413326
Publisher:
AMACOM
Publication date:
02/23/2009
Edition description:
Second Edition
Pages:
336
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.30(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER 1: Human Leverage

‘‘We can have facts without thinking but we cannot have

thinking without facts.’’

—JOHN DEWEY

The Shift

No longer is management of the human resources department

a human resources issue. When personnel and training

came into being during the 1930s, it was in response to

the growing strength of organized labor. The main contribution

of personnel and industrial relations was to deal with

that incursion. After World War II, as corporations expanded,

there was a need for someone to handle the administrative

issues around employees. Personnel got the job. By

the late 1960s, it was becoming clear that there were more

complex challenges, so personnel changed its name to

human resources. Today, the game is human capital management.

Conceptually, this is recognition that people are

the bedrock of the organization as we stumble into the Intelligence

Age. The fundamental question has become, how do

we improve the return on our investment in human capital?

We find ourselves in a world where yesterday is a distant

memory and tomorrow is an uncertain dream. The only reality

is now. Yet, by taking the long view of any issue, we

better understand not only where we have come from and

where we are now but perhaps where we might be headed.

Consider how a technology such as telecommunications has

evolved. It started as a box on the wall with a crank and a

gizmo to talk into. Some people believed that it was a fad

and that they didn’t need one. Today, it is a gizmo stuck in

your ear or a pad hung somewhere on your body and don’t

try to tell your teenagers that they don’t need one.

So what does this have to do with managing organizations

and especially with understanding how people—that

is, human capital—need to be addressed within our organizations?

Here is where it goes three-dimensional. The issue

is not only the structure of organizations and the people

within them. Now the external entity, the customer, has entered

the organization in a new and as yet not clearly understood

way. Whether we recognize the fact or not, the

customer is as much a part of our companies as are our

physical and human assets. The three types of capital—

structural, human, and relational—are rapidly merging into

just structural and human with what was the external relations

(the customer) now imbedded in everything we do internally.

Let me try to explain it by paralleling it with the evolution

of electronic technology. Computers became a reality with

the production of ENIAC, which was the first truly workable,

large-scale computer. By large, I mean room size.

ENIAC was born in 1945 as a mass of vacuum tubes that

truly took up the space of a room. Twenty years later, IBM

came out with the System/360 that brought computing into

the business world in a somewhat user-friendly way. Two

decades later, minicomputers were common and the micro-

computer appeared. The first portable computer weighed

more than 20 pounds. Today, laptops weigh less than 5

pounds. BlackBerrys and similar devices weigh only 5

ounces and provide more computing power than ENIAC. So

what? Stay with me, there is an end and a point to this

journey.

As the computer and lately the telephone evolved and

merged capabilities, the critical challenges also advanced

from hardware to software to services. The product capability

has grown to the point where the customer and the product

are virtually inseparable. Today’s telephone/computer is

no longer in a room, on our desk, or in a purse or briefcase.

It is attached to our ear. Already that gizmo is taking simple

switching voice commands. Tomorrow it will do our computing

verbally as we walk, drive, or sit on our patio. Arguments

over any topic from who won the Stanley Cup in 1948

to where was da Vinci when he painted the Mona Lisa to

what was Tonto’s pet’s name will be settled without lifting a

finger.

Ten years ago, I told people at PeopleSoft that they

needed to move toward services as the next natural evolutionary

step. They told me to get lost. Lou Gerstner saw the

future and had the power to shift IBM toward service. In

2007, over 60 percent of IBM revenues came from services.

The reason that the customer is now part of our organization

is that we no longer sell a product or provide a service.

We design, sell, and service a customer experience. We are

stuck in the customer’s ear, literally and figuratively. No

matter what our product, because of the customer’s emerging

capabilities and the expectations that are coming with

them, we are selling experiences.

Steve Berkowitz, former CEO of Ask.com and later senior

vice president of Microsoft’s online business group, hit it

squarely in words that are paraphrased here:

We have to deliver the basics but that isn’t going to get us to

the top. Customers go where their emotions take them. We

have to give the customer the richest experience they want

NOW. In order to do that, I say we have to live 24/7 with the

customer.

Meet the Author

Jac Fitz-enz (San Jose, CA) has been called “the father of human performance benchmarking.” He is founder of the Saratoga Institute, known worldwide for its pioneering research and reports on performance measurement and improvement, and of the consulting firm Human Capital Source.

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The ROI of Human Capital: Measuring the Economic Value of Employee Performance 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Jac Fitz-enz presents a breakthrough approach to measuring your return on investment (ROI) in human capital. This book could have been dull, dry and dusty in someone else¿s hands, but instead is absorbing and a pleasure to read. Using studies done by the Saratoga Institute ¿ his own facility ¿ and drawing upon the work of other researchers as well, the author places this new methodology in the context of today¿s business challenges, including e-commerce. He pinpoints satisfaction as the baseline value employees pursue, and shows how you will profit by working toward employee fulfillment. We highly recommend this book to those in human resources, and to managers, executives and entrepreneurs who run their own businesses.