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University of Exeter Business School

Strategic and HR Analytics

Module titleStrategic and HR Analytics
Module codeBEM3063
Academic year2023/4
Module staff

Sinfree Gono (Convenor)

Duration: Term123
Duration: Weeks


Number students taking module (anticipated)


Module description

In this module you will deepen your understanding of how analytics can be used to develop business strategies. In addition, the module will cover how analytics can be used from a HR perspective and in particular the use of machine learning in HR analytics. Machine learning methods can be used to analyse large data sets and are an important part of the toolkit of HR managers. You will learn how to convert unstructured text to structured data and then analyse it using various dimension reduction techniques. Key concepts taught include pattern recognition, classification, categorisation, and concept acquisition. You will also learn about deep learning and neural networks.

Module aims - intentions of the module

It is increasingly necessary to be able to provide data driven facts and use them effectively in order to proactively address critical HR and performance issues and strategically support the business.  We will cover how data driven HR analytics and metrics provide information that helps drive strategic business decisions and deliver competitive advantage over competitors.  We will cover how key HR deliverables are identified, how data analytics can be used to solve HR problems, how strategic performance frameworks and measurement systems are designed and implemented, and how different metrics, benchmarks, indicators, research and gathering techniques, analysis and reporting can be used to support decision-making.  Key concepts, theory and best practice related to workforce psychology and analytics will be discussed, including text analysis, machine learning and network analytics.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

ILO: Module-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 1. identify and apply appropriate analytics methods and tools to a range of business situations;
  • 2. demonstrate knowledge and understanding of fundamental, and domain-specific, analytics methods and tools;
  • 3. create, manage, interrogate, interpret and visualise data from a wide range of different sources, types and including structured and unstructured forms.

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 4. critically analyse the use of data within a business context, identifying strengths and limitations.

ILO: Personal and key skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

    Syllabus plan

    The following content will be covered in an integrated fashion throughout the course

    • Defining business strategy and building the case for HR as a strategic function
    • Identifying the HR architecture and key HR deliverables
    • Recognising how HR analytics supports business decisions and goals
    • Designing and implementing strategic performance frameworks and measurement systems that are aligned with business strategy
    • Understanding workforce psychology and how data analytics can be used to solve HR problems
    • Using a systematic approach to collecting, analysing and interpreting data right for the organisation and industry
    • Building and improving measurement systems in order to gain significant business insights, for example, using descriptive and diagnostic analytics, benchmarking, and balanced scorecards
    • Leveraging information technology to record, retrieve and report on HR information and convert data, metrics, benchmarks and indicators into strategic decision–making information
    • Ethics, regulation and governance in HR analytics
    • Introduction to machine learning in HR analytics
    • Using text based data to generate insights

    Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

    Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

    Details of learning activities and teaching methods

    CategoryHours of study timeDescription
    Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activity36Lectures, seminars and workshops
    Guided Independent Study60Guided reading and preparation for lectures
    Guided Independent Study54Assignment preparation

    Formative assessment

    Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
    In class discussionsIn class 1-4Verbal

    Summative assessment (% of credit)

    CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

    Details of summative assessment

    Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
    Group case study301250 words1-4Written
    Individual report702500 words1-4Written

    Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

    Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
    Group case studyIndividual reflective report (30%) 1-4 Referral/deferral period
    Individual reportIndividual report (70%)1-4Referral/deferral period

    Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

    Guided reading will be provided via the module ELE pages, the type of information that you might be expected to review includes:

    Isson, J. P; Harriot, J.S & Fitz-enz, J. (2016) People Analytics in the Era of Big Data: Changing the Way You Attract, Acquire, Develop, and Retain Talent. Wiley

    Fink, A. A & Sturman, M.C (2017) HR Metrics and Talent Analytics. pp375 – 395 of The Oxford Handbook of Talent Management.  Oxford University Press.

    Key words search

    HR, Strategy, Talent, Analytics, People

    Credit value15
    Module ECTS


    Module pre-requisites

    BEM1024 OR BEE1022 OR BEE1025 OR BEA1012



    Module co-requisites


    NQF level (module)


    Available as distance learning?


    Origin date


    Last revision date