Cover art for podcast Digital HR Leaders with David Green

Digital HR Leaders with David Green

107 EpisodesProduced by David GreenWebsite

In this series, David Green will be speaking to a range of senior HR leaders who are pushing a data-driven and digital HR agenda. There is an increasing need for HR professionals to become more digitally and numerically literate – to acquire the skills necessary to process, produce and leverage digi… read more


65. How Vertex has Built a World Class People Analytics Function (Interview with Jimmy Zhang)

My guest on this week's episode is Jimmy Zhang, the Head of People Strategy and Analytics at Vertex Pharmaceuticals. He joined the company, which has just over 3000 Employees, in 2018 and has built the People Analytics team from the ground up. I am often asked if People Analytics is the preserve of larger companies and I always say no, every company has business questions that can be answered with People Analytics. That said there are different challenges in setting up a People Analytics Team in an organisation with, say less than 5,000 Employees. For one, you don't have the luxury of building a large team, this means you need to take a different approach, one of partnership and leveraging skills from across the organisation. This is exactly what my guest on this week's episode has done and in doing so has built one of the most agile, most innovative and most successful People Analytics Teams I have come across.

In our conversation, Jimmy and I discuss:

  • How Vertex leverages a partnership model, a strong foundation in governance and ethics, to advance People Analytics in the company
  • The tripartite relationship between the People Analytics team, HR Business Partners and the Business and how this helps prioritise and elevate People Analytics work
  • Work that Jimmy is leading around skills to help drive career growth, development and mobility at Vertex
  • How Vertex is building a continuous employee listening program, which couples active and passive data sources
  • How Vertex tackles the build versus buy conundrum when it comes to HR and People Analytics technology

This episode is a must listen for anyone tasked with building or transforming People Analytics or who is involved in building or buying HR technology. So that is Business Leaders, CHROs and anyone in a HR Leadership, People Analytics, Workforce Planning or HR Business Partner role.

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