How Moneyball inspired HR at Circles.Life

The Special Projects Lead for Circles.Life was at HR Festival Asia to share how data science has helped to improve business performance.
By: | May 10, 2019


The first-ever HR Festival Asia, brought to you by the combined experience of HR Technology Conference & Exposition (US) and HR Summit (Asia), takes over the Suntec Singapore Convention & Exhibition Centre on May 8 and 9.

With a line-up of more than 100 speakers across six dedicated streams, and an Expo Hall with more than 100 exhibitors, there’s a little something for everyone at the event.

Check out our HR Festival Asia tag for more coverage direct from the event.

If you’ve seen the movie Moneyball, you would know that two baseball coaches build a team of undervalued talent by taking a sophisticated data-driven approach to scouting, rather than one based on experience and intuition.

Singapore mobile network operator Circles.Life approaches HR and staffing in the same scientific way, according to Gui Wainwright, Special Projects, Circles.Life, at HR Festival Asia.

“We look at what we need to achieve, break it down to the first principles, then look at what we need to get done,” Wainwright told the HR and Digital Transformation stream.

This methodology is called data science – a multi-disciplinary field that uses scientific methods, processes, algorithms and systems to extract knowledge and insights from structured and unstructured data.

“We get this question all the time – what is data and what is its purpose?,” said Wainwright. “Data science is designed not to track you, but to help make yours and your people’s lives better.”

The goal, he added, is to keep employees engaged and empowered. “If something isn’t working, it will be manifested in the data”.

Wainwright jokes that his colleagues are always wary of him because he’s always collecting information on them, but says that they understand that this will ultimately benefit them.

Mining data has allowed HR to make predictive hires, onboard hires more effectively, and improve business performance all around.

“All that together is how we retain our people, and keep them happy,” he says.