Featured Client: HSD Metrics

The HSD Difference

“HR professionals are often the most overworked, underappreciated, and yet vital parts of any organization,” says Dan Cahill, Managing Principal of HSD Metrics (HSD). “For over 30 years, I’ve been working with HR professionals that want to move from an administrative role to a thought leader role.”

When Cahill bought HSD Metrics 6 years ago, he and the team worked tirelessly to achieve that vision of helping HR professionals be less bogged down with processes and become valued thought leaders. As a global leader in their space, HSD has conducted millions of exit interviews throughout their 30+ year history. More recently, as they’ve built on that expertise, HSD has expanded HR’s view of employee survey solutions across all aspects of the employee lifecycle – new hire, engagement, stay interviews, and leadership assessments. Says Cahill, “To really help our customers, we needed to pioneer a new way of supporting employee listening. Our customers can now take the entire administrative side of employee listening and give it to us – data collection, analysis, reporting, and report distribution.”


In 2022, HSD was already a vibrant, growing organization, but they had a number of unmet marketing needs. Cahill shares, “We were doing some demand generation, we had some inbound leads, and we were doing some digital marketing activities, but our marketing team and their approach was focused on activities rather than on a strategic approach based on what we were trying to accomplish. We knew we needed more help and looked around at a number of options – hiring a full-time team, piecing together a team by hiring contractors, or hiring a full- time agency. I didn’t feel we knew enough about our needs to hire an in-house team, and when I looked at outside resources, we found marketing professionals who wanted us to adopt their business model rather than working to understand where we were and do what we needed to be done.”


At that point, Cahill reached out to Amy Connor, President, and owner of CMO-OnLoan. Connor shares, “When I met Dan, he originally told me that HSD needed a new digital agency and asked if CMO-OnLoan could help with that. Through our discovery conversations, we quickly realized they didn’t have the right marketing foundation. So, I let Dan know that CMO-OnLoan was not a digital agency, but I did think we could help.”


Connor adds, “We met them where they were. First, we quickly learned what they were doing and what results they were getting. Part of our job was to be true to the HSD brand when we marketed. You can tangibly see their brand promise come to life. They have a great platform and a product that keeps getting better. Their customers, HR professionals, are busy, overtaxed, and with limited budgets. They need a partner to genuinely help them, and HSD Metrics does just that. It was important to “communicate-educate” as Dan calls it, because the HSD customers deserved to get the help they needed, not spammed."

"We built a strong content calendar; we created a regular LinkedIn and email posting rhythm. HSD had never communicated with their current customer base, so we added customer emails to the content plan, we tested several things;, and importantly, we introduced a Marketing KPI Dashboard so the team could understand the impact of their efforts.”

Cahill adds, “CMO-OnLoan helped us build the foundation. They took all the pieces we were doing – organized it, added some new things, got rid of a few things – and helped us get on a path. That foundation was the springboard that now is helping us as we look at taking HSD Metrics to the next level.”


After almost 1.5 years of working together, HSD Metrics has “graduated” and is moving forward
with a new level of confidence in marketing. Cahill says, “For a year and a half Amy and the
CMO-OnLoan team were part of our team. Now we have the foundation – a clear strategy, the
systems and processes, an implementation partner, and the right measurements in place – and
we are ready to move forward on our own. It is exciting to be a part of things with momentum.
For us, it sparks innovation and opportunities to engage with our clients at a new level.” Connor sees the newfound confidence in the team. “They have new ideas and focus. I can’t wait
to see what they will do next.”

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