The 80-20 rule in the human resources world

The 80/20 rule in the human resources world

The 80/20 rule was developed by Vilfredo Pareto, a 19th-century Italian economist who found that 80% of his city’s wealth belonged to 20% of the population.

This 80/20 distribution occurs very frequently in different areas. In short, a small part of your efforts determines most of your current results. The remaining time is spent on trivial and unproductive tasks.

This principle is excellent for improving our productivity. For this reason, we talked in today’s post about how to use this rule to make it useful.


If 20% of your products or services are responsible for 80% of your sales, then it is clear that this 20% should have priority over the rest. Focus your efforts on these products and services to increase your company’s profit margins.

On the other hand, the remaining 80% of your products and services may need to change. Try marketing them using another strategy, or incorporating changes to the producer or service; reflect even if perhaps the best option is to remove them from the market.

Management and selection of staff

It is very useful to consider the 80/20 rule in this area, as it is a time-consuming activity. In our performance evaluations, Pareto’s law encourages us to identify the most productive employees and take better care of them.

In this way, the HR team can know which workers contribute more to the company and which profiles are those that give them the best results, so they can look for candidates with similar characteristics when filling a vacancy.

In addition, it motivates us to invest appropriately in training the remaining 80% to get them to improve their performance.

As we have seen, there is an imbalance between efforts and results achieved in virtually all areas of life. Therefore, identifying your most productive 20% will help you know where to turn your efforts.

Focused on recruiting, if you strive to find and hire candidates who will be part of this 20% more productive your business will take off and grow very quickly. These profiles will not only be more productive within your business, but they will be able to train and help your other workers to reach a higher degree of productivity and give everything of itself.

Normally, this 20% is more productive because they are workers motivated by your project or by the culture and values of your company. If you want to know more about the motivation of employees do not hesitate to read our post The importance of the motivation of candidates.

And you, what is the profile of the candidate who will be part of the 20% more productive? How are you going to find this ideal candidate? If you already have it on your team, how did you find it?

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