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Prescriptive Analytics

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HR Analytics

  • Format: Self-paced
  • Course Duration: 1 hr 31 mins
  • SHRM Professional Development Credits: 1.50
  • HRCI Business Recertification Credits: 1.50
  • Certificate of Completion (after passing quiz)

Identifying metrics, measuring output and analyzing information are common practices for every business. Leveraging data to make the best decisions is key to building a successful organization. There’s no doubt data analytics is here to stay. However, did you know 80% of HR professionals score themselves low on their ability to analyze data? As a result, an opportunity to provide guidance and value can be completely lost.

After this course, you’ll understand the important terms and concepts associated with HR analytics and the purpose of developing them in your organization. Start using techniques to begin the analytics process. Learn a new skill that'll help you and your HR department gain credibility and make better decisions.

HR Jetpack is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP. This program is valid for 1.50 PDCs for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP. For more information about certification or recertification, please visit

This activity, has been approved for 1.50 HR (Business) recertification credit hours toward aPHR™, PHR®, PHRca®, SPHR®, GPHR®, PHRi™ and SPHRi™ recertification through HR Certification Institute® (HRCI®). For more information about certification or recertification, please visit the HR Certification Institute website at
The use of the HRCI seal confirms that this activity has met HR Certification Institute's® (HRCI®) criteria for recertification credit pre-approval.

Title: Prescriptive Analytics
Module: Three Major Categories of Analytics
Duration: 2:22

We'll take one step further by defining prescriptive analytics. Having recently emerged within the past few years, these methods make recommendations and show the likely outcomes.

It attempts to answer the questions now what and so what?

It's based on the concept of optimization. With prescriptive analytics, we’re trying to make the most effective use of limited resources and time in uncertain conditions. The mathematical models are designed to help us make better decisions.

Optimization problems have three elements. The first is an objective. This is something to be maximized or minimized like profit or costs. We want to maximize profits and minimize costs. The second is a set of variables in which the values can be changed to optimize the objective like how many human resource hours are allocated to a project or amount of money invested in that project. We can manipulate these factors by increasing or decreasing them. The third element is a set of constraints or restrictions such as budget or available staff. By identifying the third element, we answer the question what limits are we up against when implementing a project?

A computer program like Microsoft Excel solves optimization problems. Excel uses probability and modeling to select the best alternative from all available options. It integrates historical data, variables, constraints, and objectives to identify the best possible outcomes.

A very popular example of prescriptive analytics in action is the Google self-driving car. This technology uses an incredible amount of data and calculations to arrive safely at its final destination.

As a foundational course, we won’t spend much more time on this category. However, it’s important for you to recognize it. Prescriptive analytics builds on predictive data by advising you what to do and what will happen if you do it.

Instructor: Christina A. Danforth

Christina A. Danforth, SHRM-SCP & SPHR, launched HR Jetpack in 2016 to support the development and professional growth of her fellow HR colleagues. She started her HR career in 2002. After obtaining her Master’s in Business Administration degree, Christina joined United Technologies Corporation. She moved across the United States...

Christina's Full Bio

SHRM Recertification

HR Jetpack® is an official SHRM Education Partner recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP.

HRCI Recertification

HR Jetpack® is recognized by HRCI as an approved provider to offer credit hours towards aPHR™, PHR®, PHRca®, SPHR®, GPHR®, PHRi™ and SPHRi™ recertification.

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