Use technology to free HR

Moving records into the cloud and automating HR processes frees professionals to have the conversations that matter, says Stuart Keeble, chief technology officer for Appogee HR.

IMG_7594The evolving workplace continues to put pressure on organisations. Businesses are expected to invest both time and money into making sure they are compliant with the growing number of rules and regulations, whilst flexible enough to adapt to challenges. HR as an industry has particularly felt the impact of regulation. Alongside this, remote working is becoming more prominent, challenging companies to provide employees with the highest possible levels of support, no matter where they work.

A stream of court cases in recent years, often as a result of a lack of visibility and monitoring by HR, has kept compliance high on the business agenda. Stories of large settlement fees, disputes and court cases act as a constant reminder of the cost of errors in HR administration and oversight. The impact of a dispute can be significant, damaging an organisation’s reputation and wasting time and money in dealing with it.

HR Cloud

Moving records and process into the cloud will go a long way in transforming HR for the better; simplifying processes for both employees and managers, dramatically reducing paper, and allowing key data and records to be accessed with just a few clicks, increasing flexibility.

As any HR professional will tell you, one of the greatest challenges is getting that balance between management, paperwork, engagement and support of staff. Making procedures simpler and introducing digital workflows alongside visibility of checklists for activities such as new joiner processes, right-to-work, performance reviews and training, both for managers and employees, will go a long way to reducing workload and paper. In addition, automating a number of processes, or at least digitising them, will free up time and help HR managers to focus on meaningful conversations with staff and operate with greater agility.

A recent study revealed 97% of HR managers believe there is a clear link between wellbeing and performance. Introducing clear targets and regular review processes can go further than you might think in making sure staff wellbeing and engagement levels are high. Both of which are key to maximising organisational output.

Efficiency and flexibility

If implemented correctly, cloud technology can lead the way in the transformation of the HR department in the same way that it’s improving flexibility across the workplace. It has the potential to increase efficiency wherever introduced, consolidating information in one place.

The technology behind flexible working is enabling workforces to be managed and communicated with as if they were in the same building, as a result making organisations more agile. Efficiency can be improved by providing employees with access to data only relevant to them, and introducing self-serving allows personnel to maintain and fill their own digital spaces with correct information, and even manage to-do lists. Making HR departments more flexible and efficient with self-serving cloud technology will not only reduce errors in records, but empower staff to take control of their own profiles and lower the workload of HR.

Ignoring the potential of the cloud is an error few are committing, but HR is a department that can really benefit in ways unlike any other. Entire operations can be transferred, increasing the ability to maintain compliance in an industry that continues to come under pressure. Greater flexibility and subsequently efficiency results in more time for HR to actually support staff, which can go a long way to improving engagement, and ultimately an organisation’s bottom line as a result of happy high performing employees.

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