I read an interesting article in Fortune the other day about new and different ways that companies are beginning to use analytics and other tools to measure, track, and analyze things such as employee productivity and employee engagement. For instance, a tool like Culture Amp, which takes snapshots of employee engagement via surveys and analyzes trends over time, is being used by companies such as Box, Airbnb, GoDaddy and others.

As companies continue to gather employee data, including employee sentiment, organizational leaders will eventually be able to track and analyze changes in the corporate culture.

The emergence of these types of technologies and capabilities are creating enormous opportunities for CIOs to guide the use of so-called ‘people analytics.’ These types of tools offer tremendous potential value and ROI to companies that use them.

For instance, a manufacturing company cited in the Fortune article used a tool from VoloMetrix to discover that some of its junior managers spent more than 30 hours each week sending reports to senior management or in status meetings. This only left 10 hours each week for the junior managers to do their “real work” These insights led senior management to cut down on its volume of meetings.

Achieving these types of insights and then acting on them can deliver powerful productivity gains. Executives and other supervisors can use these types of tools to identify how employees’ time is being spent and to make changes when needed to ensure that their time and resources are then better utilized.

Department heads and other functional leaders can also use these types of tools to keep a pulse on employee engagement. Instead of relying on old data from company-wide employee satisfaction surveys that are conducted annually or biannually, executives and managers can use a new class of tools to capture employee satisfaction and engagement in near real time. These tools, combined with the use of analytics, can also enable managers and executives to identify emerging issues and act on them before they become widespread (e.g. dissatisfaction among a group of employees with the managerial tactics used by a particular supervisor).

Plus, as the job market continues to show improvement, the use of these types of tools can help HR leaders and department managers to identify triggers for employee dissatisfaction quickly and prevent valued employees from leaving the company.

As stewards of technology and transformation, the CIO can play a pivotal role in enabling the enterprise to learn more about the factors that are shaping employees’ attitudes along with opportunities for achieving higher rates of employee satisfaction and productivity.