What is HR reporting and analytics?


Sep 15, 2023

Every thriving business knows that the heart of strategic decision-making lies in understanding organizational health through data. Human resources reporting and analytics aren’t just about hiring and firing—they’re about harnessing HR data to gauge employee engagement, headcount, and other key HR performance indicators. 

Delving into metrics gives businesses the insights they need to foster employee satisfaction and, in turn, impact the bottom line. In this guide, we'll walk you through the use of HR reporting and analytics, spotlighting the essential metrics and showing you how to centralize this data for easy access and action.

What is HR reporting and analytics?

HR software has revolutionized how businesses operate, especially regarding HR reporting and analytics. HR reporting and analytics might sound complex, but they’re really about clarity and action. 

At its heart, HR reporting presents the raw employee data—like the number of new hires, absences, or the timeframe from hiring a new employee to their full productivity. Think of it as the raw materials—the timber and bricks of a construction site. 

On the other hand, HR analytics is the architect—the intelligent system that extracts patterns from this data. It provides you with visualization through dashboards and graphs, enabling data-driven strategies and predictive analytics that guide business decisions. While HR reporting tells you your turnover rate, HR analytics unravels the story behind it, reveals the why, and offers solutions. 

Together, they empower HR managers, professionals, and C-suite leaders to make informed decisions about their human capital.

Why do you need HR reporting and analytics?

HR analytics takes data analysis beyond mere numbers; it unravels stories, allowing stakeholders to grasp the narrative of their company. With robust HR analytics, businesses can leverage data sets to assess organizational health, drive initiatives, and base decision-making on concrete data—not hunches. 

A recent Gartner report found that employee turnover rates across business sectors could be as high as 24% in the coming years. If you’re not on top of your HR analytics, such trends could creep up on your organization, resulting in unforeseen costs and disruptions. 

In essence, if you’re not actively monitoring and analyzing your HR data, you're navigating mindlessly, leaving your company vulnerable to unexpected pitfalls. HR reporting and analytics give your business the competitive edge it needs, ensuring you’re always a step ahead.

HR reports and metrics you should track

To truly get a grip on your company's health and dynamics, it's essential to keep a close eye on several HR metrics. Below are some of the fundamental reports and metrics that, when monitored correctly, can reveal deep insights into the well-being of your company.

Turnover and Retention Rate

Your turnover and retention rate is more than just a number—understanding it can shine a light on employee satisfaction levels, organizational culture, and even the effectiveness of your hiring process. A high turnover rate might suggest underlying issues like a lack of job satisfaction or ineffective management, while a strong retention rate often indicates a content workforce.

Employee Performance

Dive deep into employee productivity metrics to understand how your employees are performing. Regularly evaluating employee performance isn't just about commendations or critiques. These metrics can offer insights into onboarding processes and highlight areas needing improvement. They also offer a lens into whether employees have the necessary resources and training—and if their roles align with their skills and passions.

Time to Hire

This metric gauges the efficiency of your hiring process. A prolonged time to hire can suggest inefficiencies in the recruitment process, while a quick time to hire might indicate that you’re not being thorough enough in selecting the right candidates.


Regular, unexplained absences can be symptomatic of deeper issues, be it job dissatisfaction, burnout, or personal problems. Tracking absenteeism helps HR teams intervene early, ensuring employees get the support they need.

Employee Engagement

While harder to quantify, employee engagement can be one of the most telling metrics about organizational health. Engaged employees are often more productive and loyal, contributing positively to company culture. Using surveys, feedback sessions, and other tools can help assess the level of engagement within your workforce.

These are just a few of the many metrics HR professionals can harness. By paying attention to these key indicators, businesses can foster a healthier work environment, leading to happier employees and better outcomes.

Streamlining HR Reporting: Making it Effortless

Handling a large volume of intricate data can be daunting. But imagine doing so without the headache of navigating multiple spreadsheets, sifting through isolated data in different systems, and enduring the tediousness of keeping everything updated. Sounds like a dream, right?

Enter Rippling, workforce management software with the ability to leverage employee data to create any report you might need. Rippling pulls together every fragment of employee data—from HR to IT, Finance, and even third-party systems—into a single platform. Whether you’re centralizing employee retention data or tracking the progress of new hires, it’s all a breeze.

With Rippling, you get:

  • Unified Platform: Gone are the days of piecing together scattered data. Every crucial piece of employee information, no matter where it originates, finds its place under one umbrella.
  • Secure Sharing: Need to share a report with someone? Whether they're in your company or an external collaborator, you can confidently and securely grant them access to the data they need—all from one place.
  • Customizable Reporting: Say goodbye to rigid, pre-set reports and cumbersome spreadsheets. Whether you use Rippling’s ready-to-go report templates or modify them to suit your unique needs, the flexibility is unparalleled.

To get ahead in our current business landscape, understanding and acting upon HR data isn't just a luxury—it's a necessity. By staying vigilant with your HR analytics, you empower your company to take proactive measures, ensuring optimal growth and a robust organizational structure. With tools like Rippling, making informed decisions becomes simpler and more efficient.

Disclaimer: Rippling and its affiliates do not provide tax, accounting, or legal advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal, or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal, and accounting advisors before engaging in any related activities or transactions.

last edited: September 15, 2023

The Author

Carissa Tham

A British Columbia-based tech content strategist and writer, Carissa has lived and worked in Singapore, Taiwan, and Canada. Carissa lends her unique global perspectives to growing Rippling’s brand in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond.