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Singapore SME makes HR analytics affordable for other small companies

A small supplier in Singapore is offering other SMEs a SAS-based HR software shared service

A small business in Singapore has made it possible for other small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to access powerful analytics for human resources (HR) without the high price tag, through a shared service.

Lee Wenyong & Co uses its L12 SME analytics dashboard, powered by SAS Visual Analytics, to offer both HR and accounting analytics services to its SME clients. The company was the first SME in Singapore to deploy SAS Visual Analytics, having done so since 2012.

“Our clients are usually SMEs with annual revenues of more than S$3m and employing between 30 and 200 employees. They are in the retail, finance and banking, construction, medical, dental and trading industries,” said Max Lee Wenyong, HR director and partner of Lee Wenyong & Co.

“For an SME to survive in Singapore, a data-driven approach is required, especially in the area of HR where manpower costs are the largest recurring cost,” he said.

Currently, 92 SMEs are deploying Lee Wenyong & Co’s analytics services on a monthly subscription basis.

For recruitment, the L12 SME analytics software completes talent assessments, where the answers from potential candidates are scored by comparing them to those of identified high performers in the company. For example, based on a candidate’s response, the correlation of working style and approach to problem solving can be determined against confirmed high performers. Similar working styles indicate that the candidate is likely to do well in the company.

The use of analytics for HR is a growing trend, said Helen Poitevin, principal research analyst at Gartner, who focuses on human capital management technologies.

“Due to a very active talented marketplace in Southeast Asia, we anticipate that more and more organisations will be testing out these approaches [predictive analytics and machine learning] so as to increase their recruiting effectiveness and ensure a better quality of hire,” said Poitevin. 

Read more about enterprise IT in Singapore

She explained that in recruitment, analytics can help to improve process efficiencies and optimise costs by analysing the best candidate, sourcing channels for specific types of roles, or monitoring the average time spent at different steps of the recruitment process.

“More challenging is the focus on quality of hire, as it can be difficult to determine a systematic measure for this – some will make do with looking at the new hire turnover to say that a quality hire is one who actually joins and stays with the organisation; others will look to more long-term promotion rates or the performance ratings earned by recent hires,” said Poitevin.

Besides HR, Lee Wenyong & Co also offers accounting analytics. The service was used by a dental clinic to analyse data captured in its patient registration and billing platform. Consequently, the team identified that the dental services sold in 2014 were largely low-value treatments, including scaling, polishing and fillings.

As a result of this knowledge the clinic decided to market high-value services, such as inlays, implants and crowns. In 2015, the clinic had fewer dentists but performed mainly high-value services, which resulted in a 62.7% increase in profitability compared with 2014.

Read more on IT outsourcing

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