Why HRIS is not enough in your HR planning in the New Era?
There’s no doubt that technology is key to the workplaces and workforces of the future, and you need to keep on top of digital transformation trends. Not only can technology improve the employee experience, but it can also increase productivity. So, while HR teams can invest in HR software to enhance their function and service to the business, HRIS (human resources information system) may not be enough to manage and measure the employee experience, which is fundamental to business success.
HRIS in the beginning
Decades ago, HRIS technology was introduced to workplaces as HR tools to support core HR processes. In the beginning, they were basic systems often limited to HR and IT and not extended to line managers or others in the company. However, they provided an efficient way to manage basic HR tasks and records and were transactional to help the HR team serve the business (e.g., payroll or employee data).
How human resources information systems have evolved
Over time, HRIS began to develop (the delivery through the internet helped!), and some functions were accessible by managers who could amend data such as annual leave, etc. Increased functionality and digital transformation allowed HR departments to create data reports and enhance the business's service.
However, HRIS has improved significantly in the last decade and now offers valuable functions throughout the employee lifecycle. Examples include process reviews, employee self-service, online learning and development, and performance management tools. HR now has access to various data and information in one place, and HRIS enhances the credibility of HR. HR can quickly produce relevant and vital information for management, giving them a chance to step into a company and employee-focused role rather than a transactional, reactive back-office function.
What does it mean for HR?
Even the most advanced HRIS technology and HR software won’t replace your need for an HR team, but if you select the right system, it can free up your HR people to get with other work and give them a more strategic approach. Using a human resources information system where all information is in one place will save time as individuals won’t have to log in to many different systems.
Also, as employees can manage some of their information, it will free up time for HR and align processes. And of course, it leads to an (almost) paper-free working environment, or at least certainly reduces paper. It doesn’t matter if HR can’t get into the office to access paper employee files in the remote working world, as the system will store all the employee information.
Regarding recruitment, HRIS can benefit the process by storing and reviewing applications and CVs, sending consistent emails or responses to candidates, tracking applications, and producing data for diversity and inclusion.
How does HRIS benefit the company?
As human resources information systems automate many processes, they free up time and allow employees, managers, and HR members to access the information remotely. Reporting options allow for consistent and easily accessible data; there are less likely to be errors because the information is not constantly transferred from spreadsheet to spreadsheet, and they aid compliance, which can decrease the risk of breaches and, therefore, potential penalties.
In addition, such digital transformation means the systems are greener. They don’t require paper systems and are less at risk of security breaches or physical damage than paper-based HR files.
What does HRIS mean for employees?
It depends on the employee, but HRIS has given employees more ownership and transparency of their data and information. Many systems will allow them to manage their benefits, book annual leave, etc. Mobile apps let them do this remotely and whenever suits them. And if the systems work well, it could ultimately improve their digital employee experience and, ultimately, the employee experience.
But HRIS can also help employees engage as technology can help them manage their learning and development, giving them a better employee experience, which undoubtedly helps company-wide engagement.
How to select the best system
First, consider your company size and what your company needs. A perfect system for other places may not suit your needs. Think about what you need it to achieve and begin the research process. Ideally, you want to invest in one system covering the employee lifecycle (i.e., onboarding, performance management, etc.) to streamline your operations. Ask for a user demo first to check that it’s user-friendly, can be used anywhere, and meets your objectives.
Also, consider how the provider offers customer support, what extras the system includes, and whether it is cloud-based (for extra security). It’s also worth looking at the provider’s customization options to see how you can customize templates etc., for your company.
Does HRIS technology cover the entire employee lifecycle?
That’s where your research comes in! Providers and systems will differ in what they offer. While many systems cover hiring, onboarding, payroll, absence, annual leave management, and digital employee files, not all will include areas relating to engagement.
To some degree, what you choose to measure in employee engagement (and if you’re measuring it at all!) will influence what technology you need. But ideally, what you don’t want is several more systems to measure engagement when you’ve invested in HRIS to streamline your people processes!
How important is employee feedback via technology?
It’s so important! Research shows that employee feedback systems are essential, and without them, serious issues can occur. One company’s ‘State of Workplace Harassment’ report shows that a shocking 44% of employees said they are facing harassment at work, and if such feedback isn’t getting back to the business, or the company doesn’t seem to be proactive in obtaining such feedback, then employees may go public and the damage is two-fold.
Therefore, in the new era of work, you need 360 degree feedback systems that work, are easy to use, and encourage your people to use them. If your HRIS can’t do this, you need to consider which employee experience software can.
As the new era of post-pandemic work arrives, you need to focus on your HR tools, including your HR software. It’s unlikely you’ll find a human resources information system that will fit all your people's needs. Still, the right system could help your HR team free up time to be more strategic, allow them to work smarter, and improve the accuracy and use of data. Consider both your current and future objectives when choosing a system, and don’t neglect employee engagement; it’s an essential measurement of future business success!