People Matters, 11th May 2014
The world of HR technology has undergone several changes in the last few years. Earlier, companies relied on getting major HR implementations at an organization-wide level typically through enterprise systems. Requiring huge investments and implementation efforts, these systems are difficult to update and tedious to fix. Blame it on their obscurity of adaptation and usage, the genesis of cloud HRMS Software has made the ERPs almost obsolete, at the same time changing the way and speed of technology implementations, from many months of effort earlier, to an overnight! So, what’s different in a Web based HRMS solution that makes it so effective?
If we talk about a true cloud solution, being hosted in a data center is just smallest of differentiators. The real differentiator is the ease of access, the ease to use, seamless upgradation and capability to scale. This makes administration of upgrades far easier due to lower implementation efforts and costs. All these benefits are already seeing the migration of the entire technology world towards a cloud-based environment. As per the Gartner report of August 2013, 80 percent of organizations said that they intend using cloud services in some form or the other within 12 months, including 55 percent of the organizations that are not doing so today. This trend clearly demonstrates how technology landscape would appear in near future. Parallel to this shift (from Enterprise Resource Planning systems to Cloud-based solutions) in the HR technology space, is the shift from single suite solutions to productized integration.
With an upward trend in ease, experience and engagement, users of HR systems are now looking for specialized solutions for individual processes which can integrate seamlessly. This has resulted in growth of various individual applications that cater to specialized processes. This has made today’s increasingly fragmented HR Tech market also very connected. For example, there are smart apps that can seamlessly connect applicant tracking systems, HRMS’s and self-service portals. Technology providers are also gearing up to build solutions, which can help an organization build its employer brand or impact the lives of employees. This has resulted in solutions which provide high quality user experience, with features and functions like social media integration and use over mobiles. In short, these solutions are readily adaptable to changing needs of users.
With this change in the semantics of HR technology systems, there will be a surge in demand of HR Analytics from organizations in India. Currently, not too many organizations have invested in this space, but this will change very soon. The usage of cloud based technology systems will help companies to leverage information from the cloud and make intelligent business decisions based on them. At this point, very few organizations are talking about Big Data in HR, primarily because the data is yet to achieve maturity for such usage. But once cloud proliferates more, Big Data will become a game changer. If we look around and see the impact it has created in other business areas like retail, e-commerce etc., the kind of predictability and maturity of decision making that big data analytics brings is amazing. For example, retrospective studies and surveys on engagement may not be as useful compared to real-time analysis of employees’ laptop and desktop usage patterns. Looking at another example, if one sees an employee’s investment on job portals rise significantly over a period of time, that is a more real measure of the engagement and attrition risk, as compared to retrospective surveys.
The emergence of such intelligent human capital technologies, thus, will very likely transform the nature of human resource management in the coming times. Watch out for the next wave of HR transformation and a complete new experience of the Human Resources function that it brings with it.
Authored by Kiran Kumar, Founding Member and Chief Sales Officer, PeopleStrong