The HR department has evolved tremendously from time to time. In fact, the HR department has gone through drastic changes in the last decade alone. Thanks to the emergence of a slew of technologies that automate much of the work traditionally done by HR professionals, the HR department that exists today looks almost nothing like the ones that existed before.
In addition to programs that can automate payroll and streamline the onboarding process and benefits administration, there are also platforms that simplify the recruiting process and talent management systems that enable companies to quickly determine whether their employees are getting the right training opportunities and an engaging experience.
For HR and business leaders, this digital transformation poses two fundamental challenges. First, HR can help business leaders and employees shift to a digital mindset, a digital way of managing, organizing, and leading change. Second, HR has the opportunity to revolutionize the entire employee experience by transforming HR processes, systems, and the HR organization via new digital platforms, apps, and ways of delivering various HR services.
As compared to the earlier days of focusing more on administrative tasks, tedious paperwork today’s HR managers spend their energies managing employee engagement and strengthening culture. They’re also charged with managing the employees themselves to increase the odds they’re happy at work and will continue to stick around for the foreseeable future using robust HR technologies.
In fact, 2018 is the year when more and more companies are including expenditure for HR technology in their budgets. Businesses are now looking out for purchasing and implementing new software to streamline their current HR processes. In a recent Aberdeen study, 76% of organizations are re-focusing their gaze on those core human resource functions as a cost-controlling measure and as a business imperative.
The idea of the “employee experience” has only recently manifested, inspired by the shift toward companies placing a high value on their employees and ensuring they are happy through each step of their interaction with the company. It’s HR’s role to encourage and support the employee through their journey and career advancement. Sometimes this means finding an alternative, internal opportunities for career advancement or redeployment, and other times it might mean supporting employees through career transitions outside of the company.
When HR leaders begin to take a holistic approach to the employee journey, new ways of attracting and retaining employees emerge. For example, recruiters might be more apt to discuss opportunities for career advancement with candidates in the spirit of honesty, which sets the employee up for success in her journey.
Similarly, HR might uncover the overlay between onboarding and retention, for example, when they begin to think about how the two functions are connected in relation to individual employees. Rather than focusing narrowly on engagement and culture, many leading organizations aim to improve the employee experience as a whole, supported by a multitude of feedback tools, wellness and fitness apps, and employee self-service technologies.
Thanks to new HR technologies, it’s easier than ever to manage talent and make sure employees are reaching their goals and getting what they want to out of work. Human resource management systems enable HR workers to easily keep track of everything from recruiting, onboarding and performance management to learning and development, compensation management and benefits administration. All of the critical data needed to make sure employees are improving and reaching the next level can be accessed from one central interface streamlining the HR process significantly.