A New Human Resource Metric Standard for Investor Guidance

A proposed ANSI-SHRM standard for investor human resource metrics ("ANSI-SHRM 02001.201X Investor Metrics 1stPR DRAFT Standard v1 (040912).pdf") and comments on it are available in the "Metrics and Measures Taskforce (T02)" group at http://hrstandardsworkspace.shrm.org/apps/group_public/document.php?document_id=6504&wg_abbrev=mamt02.

ANSI is the American National Standards Institute, and SHRM is the Society for Human Resource Management. The proposed standard is one of the first of its kind.

One summary proposal concerning the standard was offered by William Fisher, who suggested that the group: "In future revisions of the standard, employ scaling and instrument calibration methods capable of defining invariant units and of then supporting invariant comparisons across different vendors' particular ways of approaching the constructs to be measured." The full comment was several paragraphs, and published references were provided as resources to be consulted.

Lee Webster, of the standards task force, responded to the proposal on October 5, saying "We appreciate this insight, and agree that more sophisticated measures will (hopefully) be possible in future revisions (as more data become available). Since regular review of standards is a required part of the ANSI process, there will be an opportunity to look at these ideas in depth in the future."

Standards are widely recognized for their value in simplifying communication and facilitating trade. New standards like that being developed by ANSI and SHRM will be increasingly of interest as intangible assets, such as abilities, health, motivations, and trustworthiness, become ever more central to economic productivity. For background on the role measurement plays in bringing human, social, and natural capital to life, see the references listed below, among others.

William P. Fisher, Jr.
University of California - Berkeley


Fisher, W. P., Jr. (2011). Bringing human, social, and natural capital to life: Practical consequences and opportunities. In N. Brown, B. Duckor, K. Draney & M. Wilson (Eds.), Advances in Rasch Measurement, Vol. 2 (pp. 1-27). Maple Grove, MN: JAM Press.

Fisher, W. P., Jr. (2012). Measure and manage: Intangible assets metric standards for sustainability. In J. Marques, S. Dhiman & S. Holt (Eds.), Business administration education: Changes in management and leadership strategies (pp. 43-63). New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

Fisher, W. P., Jr. (2012). What the world needs now: A bold plan for new standards. Standards Engineering, 64(3), 1 & 3-5 [http://ssrn.com/abstract=2083975].

Fisher, W. P., Jr., & Stenner, A. J. (2011). Metrology for the social, behavioral, and economic sciences (Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences White Paper Series). Retrieved 25 October 2011, from National Science Foundation: http://www.nsf.gov/sbe/sbe_2020/submission_detail.cfm?upld_id=36.

A New Human Resource Metric Standard for Investor Guidance. William P. Fisher, Jr. … Rasch Measurement Transactions, 2012, 26:3 p. 1378

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