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Review: Welcome to the World of HR Data Doodles

These up-to-the-moment workplace comics from Turetsky offer a diverse, charmingly rendered cast engaged in relatable office-world comedy, complete with one goof of a character, Teddy, “a regular fountain of bad ideas” who elicits last-panel eyerolls from his colleagues. But despite Teddy’s insistence that a good compromise between in-person and remote work would be to let him show up at the office in his pajamas, Turetsky is after more than laughs. These “HR Data Doodles” both celebrate and gently provoke serious thinking about the role of data, analytics, and clear planning in businesses, especially when it comes to HR, hiring, and implanting new management systems.

The team at the Played Out Gaming Company continually finds itself cheering about the abundant research it’s conducted or exciting new technologies it might implement—and again and again, Turetsky depicts the most clear-headed leaders stepping back to make sure someone actually utilizes that research or dares to ask “Maybe we think about business questions to solve then figure out what kind of Big Data will be useful for us.” Throughout, the characters, usually in meetings, go from proposing big new ideas (build a proprietary tool for data analysis!) to realizing that crucial questions haven’t been asked and vital work hasn’t been done. Amusingly, one team, eager to hire new developers for a new game, decides that rather than do the hard work of writing up job requirements and salary information, maybe they could develop an app to do so instead.

Many of Turetsky’s strips, mostly presented in four panel grids with appropriately jargon- heavy office dialogue, emphasize the need for clear visions, for taking the effort to get on the same page, for talking about data and analytics after identifying what problems to target. That message shines through despite some tricky-to-follow placement of word balloons— the order in which to read the dialogue is often unintuitive. As office satire, these “doodles” are warm and incisive.

Takeaway: Warm comics celebration of HR and data analytics teams.

Comparable Titles: Doug Savage’s Savage Chickens, Jennifer Aaker and Naomi Bagdonas’s Humor, Seriously.

Production grades
Cover: A-
Design and typography: B
Illustrations: B+
Editing: B
Marketing copy: A-

from BookLife Reviews