Big Data Drives Predictive Talent Planning

HR Tech attendees see how Accenture uses big data to build a robust talent pipeline.
By: | September 14, 2018 • 2 min read
big data in talent management

How do you know which talent trends to invest in?

At Accenture, the professional-services company with 449,000 workers in 120 countries and $33 billion in revenue, big data are helping providing the answer to that question, according to Mike Gabour, a next horizon skills lead with the organization.

“Tech is changing at an exponential pace,” he said during a Thursday session at the the HR Tech Conference titled “Hiring for the Next Big Thing at Accenture: Big Data Drives Predictive Talent Planning.”


“Gone are the days when you had 10 years to respond to a new tech trend. These days you’ll be lucky if you get two,” he said. “So we always have to look ahead to stay ahead.”

But what if you could use that same technology to predict those next trends?

About two years ago, Gabour said, Accenture teamed up with Ph.Ds at MIT, “dumped a boatload of data on the conference-room table and asked them one question: How do we make sure we don’t miss the next trend?”

After the MIT representatives looked at job-posting data and talent-pipeline data, they were able to understand what those trends markers were and successfully be able to understand what was coming up. But they soon realized they were missing a key component: What was happening outside of Accenture’s internal data?

And that’s when they turned to Burning Glass Technologies to dive into the larger world of human-capital data to get answers to questions like: How do we validate what we’re seeing internally? How do we make sure we’re not missing what’s happening in the external marketplace? And how do we look to the next one to two years and predict what those future trends will be?