People Analytics Design Company

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Creating better companies, better places to work & a better society with people data & analysis.

People Analytics IO

We help the leaders of HR and HR Centers of Excellence measure what was previously anecdotal, mysterious and seemingly unmeasurable with measurements and analysis of our own design. We try to bring people together around common cause, optimizing productivity of the whole team, with careful attention to detail. We use data to facilitate one team, clear objectives and continuous adaptive learning. The philosophy of the unique combination of products and services we implement is automate data processes, augment people processes, continuous adaptive learning and go where the people work.

We help our customers develop human resource excellence by providing fully integrated system to identify, collect and share data-informed insights that will provide clarity about the performance of the programs and processes they implement and help them identify ways to improve it, measure the impact of changes, achieve results, and influence. The system we implement helps our customers apply evidence-based scrutiny of how they approach human resources. The system we implement helps to provide tools that dynamically produce insights to highlight the ways the company can be renewed and made better by and for people.

Many HR reporting and analytics solutions are overcomplicated, overbuilt, and don’t have a curated perspective. We have a curated perspective. We strive for simplicity and automation of the technical gibberish that analysts are typically mired in because it is all they know and/or it defends their job. We don't believe in complicated or busy dashboards. There are a million things you can do with data, great, there are a lot of tools and partners for this. We have a tight focus. For example in our employee journey dashboard we use <10 metrics to drive one team, clear objectives and continuous people operations improvement (across the entire organization), and aside from that we push intelligent email based updates, alerts, and value added insights. We take our partners through the valley of the shadow of data & systems death to reach the illusory promised land of business impact.

We are designers and advocates of a new class of product, which for lack of a widely recognized descriptor we call: problem specific analytic tooling or micro analytics or modular analytics - tools tightly embed with the places and times decisions are made. The philosophy of our work product is automate data processes, augment people processes, continuous adaptive learning and go where the people work.

We use and we facilitate a modular design premise that provides a suite of interconnected analysis services on relatively inexpensive, nimble software as a service application that can added to or changed over time. The connectivity of the environment increases the overall value of any single application, while at the same time reducing dependency. The elements we design anticipate new data and means to express that data in the future as we work to put each element in place. The design also considers the unique needs of people data in ways that traditional data environments designed for other purposes do not. We sell high-powered systems that can continue to produce systematic dynamic insights over time without us, as opposed to spend off time to produce “one offs” and “just one more times”.

We have developed our own proprietary frameworks, models and theories that can be tested with data. For example, the three As of talent derived business success: Attraction, Activation and Attrition and the minimum four conditions for performance (CAMS: Capability, Alignment, Motivation and Support). We develop the integrated bundle of people strategy, science, statistics and systems we refer to as people analytics and encapsulate this in processes and systems. We clarify the root problem, the theories and the questions that drive the analytics. Only then do we design the data collection instruments and data processes that are used to answer those questions.

We deal with the complex interior problems of people analytics so that others can focus on what they do best.

The measurements, systems, processes and supports we put in place will completely eliminate the problem of having to have people stop the things they were hired to do to put a data report together manually or wait for support from other internal teams that is supposed to take this problem away, but never materializes or is inconsistent. We also help our customers to break dysfunctional internal dependencies with discriminating use of automation and/or external support.


Mike West and Rich Tobey met in 2013 in Austin Texas, one of the greatest technology, music, business and culture melting pot cities in the United States. Mike’s career was in human resource management and HR analytics and Rich’s career was in finance, analytics and technology bringing to market disruptive products and services in traditional fields marketing and legal. Mike and Rich found that their career journey and individual focus complemented each other’s in surprising, and what turns out to be inseparable, ways. Analytics offers opportunities to human resource management in ways that paralleled the changes that have already occurred in other fields. This made us eager to cultivate a company around this - one that would effectively intersect our expertise and interests. We believe that capability, alignment, motivation and support is what drives collective company success and a telltale sign is passion. We are passionate about people analytics - in our case we went as far as to name our company after it. This is the passion that sets People Analytics IO apart like no other entity and we have the capability, alignment, motivation and support to back it up.

Mike has been in HR data since 2001 and started the first boutique people analytics design and consulting company in late 2013. Since then, he has facilitated the successful design and implementation of people analytics at fast growing innovation-driven companies like Atlassian, Jawbone, Pure Storage, Udemy, Otsuka.

As of 2019 what Rich and I are working on through this People Analytics IO entity is to add partners and associates and leverage the frameworks, working environments, business and legal parameters we have created for greater scale.


We are pioneers in the field of people analytics. We have been and will continue to be leaders in people analytics. People analytics is all we do. Over the course of our career our partners have built people analytics teams from the ground at many companies and can perform, assist or advise on all aspects of people analytics. We have honed our perspective and skill through many years of trial and error - we know the common misconceptions and pitfalls cold. We constantly seek new ways to maintain an experiential advantage in people analytics.

Our promise to our clients is to help them apply the right effort at the right time to increase probability of success and get more out of every dollar input.

How we deliver on our promise:

  • unmatchable experience in people analytics - prior experience are reflected in our resumes, highlights below),

  • people analytics frameworks and methods that we invented,

  • multidisciplinary team,

  • and a complete tool-box we

We materialize the combination of talent strategy, science, statistics and systems to influence performance- this intersection is how we define people analytics.

We customize to your specific needs, selecting the tools, team, and level of engagement that aligns with your business objectives.

We are small so every project, every relationship and every client story matters to us. You will have an appreciation for that level of customer service once we begin to work together.

More details on People Analytics IO mission, values, differences here



We specialize in getting people analytics up and running quickly on accessible, nimble, modern data tools, including the increasingly popular visual analysis application Tableau, data workflow tools like Alteryx, open source statistics packages like R, and extensible data warehouse / data lake environments like AWS Redshift.

For clients just implementing people analytics for the first-time, we use the proof of concept prototypes to get you to the level of insight and business value that is necessary to get the support of others. For more info see our Insight-Service package.

We also design full stack people analytics work environments including integrated data collection, data management, data analysis, and data delivery system functions. We address the hard problems of people analytics head on, including: unintegrated HR data systems, non-existent or mis-aligned methods & definitions, data quality problems and complex security and privacy needs (including need for third party confidential survey data handling). We provide specialized expertise necessary to translate business problems and HR data needs into clear technical requirements and implement them. For this see our Capability-Service package.


Atlassian, Jawbone, Pure Storage, Udemy, Otsuka

Get in touch

We know that finding the right people to work for (or with) you is a choice not to be taken lightly. That’s why we offer free consultations to walk you through your needs, the scope of your goals, and your budget.

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Mike West

Mike is a pioneer in the field of people analytics. He was a founding member of what we now call people analytics at Merck, PetSmart, Google, Children’s Health Dallas, Jawbone, and Pure Storage. Mike has made other human resource management contributions at Atlassian, Udemy, Otsuka, AstraZeneca, University of Minnesota Clerical Labor Union & Hallmark.

Mike was one of a few early analyst hires on Google’s world-renowned People Operations team, credited with using data to reinvent HR and turn Google into the talent magnet that it is today. Mike’s contributions at Google included many firsts for people analytics at Google* & potentially the world. Since then, Google has built the most impressive reputation for HR in the world & gone on to win the #1 spot on the Global Fortune Best Company to Work For list an unprecedented 8 times.

*My contributions at Google included work on the first HR data reporting architecture, the first professional employee survey design, the first benefits analytics, the first employee on-boarding analytics and the first work on employee attrition, which included Google’s first employee exit prediction model.

More detail is available at Mike’s LinkedIn profile.  References available upon request.  



M.A. Human Resources and Industrial Relations, 2001

Dual B.S., Sociology & Psychology, 1999

Activities, Achievements & Affiliations

•Wrote People Analytics for Dummies (Wiley)
•Published over 50 articles on people analytics




Rich Tobey

Rich is a technology innovator, natural leader and creative problem solver.  Rich has over 15 years experience with business intelligence/analytics and artificial intelligence in marketing and legal domains before pairing up with Mike West to take on human resources in 2013.

Rich recently developed and deployed, end to end, a streaming job candidate survey system (RecruitFactors™) at Pure Storage (PSTG).  At MarketQuiz where he was CTO, Rich was responsible for preparing the MarketView360 business intelligence and analytics platform for scalability and acquisition due diligence by SCI, Ltd (now SCI MarketView).  SCI purchased MarketQuiz, Inc. at the top 6th percentile in valuation of all published deals in 2008.

At VMAX, Rich built and owned a 23 person consulting firm doing work for Hyundai, Ford, General Motors, Kia, Nissan, iHeartMedia, Motorola, TRW and many others.  Through VMAX, Rich developed an expertise with data process flows with large data sets (including multi-terabyte ones). VMAX was one of the vendors in this study with Verizon where Rich used artificial intelligence way back in 2006-8 to classify a large set of documents and do it better than a panel of attorneys.

Rich served as Controller and later CFO at the privately held Jana, inc and later as CEO/President at privately held STTI ($8MM -> $12MM revenues at peak) where he led a successful restructuring and turnaround effort necessitated by changes to property insurance coverage.

Rich’s has a 10+ year affiliation with the meditation school. He usually spends at least an hour per day in practice. Rich is currently working to strengthen his personal connection with spirit and guidance and to integrate it into his daily life and decision making process.

More detail is available at Rich’s LinkedIn profile.  References available upon request.  


Activities & Affiliations

CPA (inactive/non-practicing), ‘95 - Current
Young Presidents’ Organization ‘96 - ‘98
Entrepreneurs’ Organization, ‘03 - ’10
iamUniversity of the Heart, Alumni Via Private Study With Mentor (24 mo. program)
iamHeart Graduate Program in Hurqalya Healing, ‘16 (19 mo. program)
iamHeart Graduate Program in Spiritual Leadership, ‘19 Candidate (19 mo. program)


M.A., Professional Accounting, ‘93
B.A., Business Administration, ‘93