In our last article, we established some of the common reasons for moving to an HR technology solution, and we finished by pointing out the need for translating the administrative savings and reduced workload into true business outcomes. This is where the true value in HR technology lies, and it’s also a foundational element of a good technology business case.

While saving the HR team dozens of hours of scanning files, planning meetings or sending documents is a nice benefit of HR technology, it won’t make the C-suite sit up and take notice. Instead, the focus should be on improved results, higher quality HR service, and a business-impacting addition of value.


Value Example #1: A Clearer Picture of Your Talent

Having a clear picture of available talent sets the stage for HR success. With the right technology in place, you can go beyond simply having headcount details in a spreadsheet. Here are some of the ways technology can provide insight into your talent:

Your talent acquisition system tells you what kind of people are interested in your company and the level of qualifications that exist in the marketplace. If needed, you can quickly access that talent pool, bringing in valuable skills to help your organization meet its objectives.

Workforce management tools help to establish work schedules in addition to tracking attendance and staffing trends. This is useful for ensuring that proper staffing levels are in place to support customer demands.

Although traditional performance reviews are under scrutiny, a performance management system is still a valuable piece of software as it enables you to determine which employees are performing and at what levels. If the goal is to create an accurate picture of existing talent capabilities, this data is highly valuable.

Having a clear picture of your existing talent, both internal and external, sets you up to leverage those resources to the fullest extent. This is where HR has the ability to make a strategic impact by aligning talent with the needs of the business.

Value Example #2: Better HR Service Delivery

HR is a service-based organization, but technology allows that service to transform from a highly manual process to one that is highly automated. Consider the following use case that examines the value of automation for improving HR service delivery.

Historically, open enrollment has been a process that is both manual and highly stressful for HR. Technology can help to mitigate the stress of the process by automating many of the manual aspects through employee self-service. This enables HR to have more meaningful conversations and to educate employees on a personal level about things that matter, such as explaining new benefits, or showing how a specific benefit might help in a specific situation. This can also enable other more strategic activities, such as evaluating  new or alternative benefits options. In the end, this transition to technology offers more value because the time saved with self-service is reinvested into the business and its employees.

In short, self-service enables better HR service. Instead of spending time working through address changes, benefit updates and other tasks, HR can spend its time crafting and implementing strategies to attract, develop and retain the right talent.

Improved Results: The Gold Standard

What organizations are looking for from HR technology are a set of improved results. According to the 2016 HR Transformation Study by KPMG, 63% of companies expect their new cloud HR system to add value to the business. This value can take many forms, but a common one is a more positive employee experience overall.

Crafting a positive employee experience can drive engagement and other business outcomes. The Sierra-Cedar HR Systems report points to the linkage between HR technology and business results, demonstrating the following connections in the value chain:

Source: Sierra-Cedar

HR has and can be done without technology, but having the right system in place enables HR to deliver exponentially higher organizational value. Getting to the point of being a strategic player with the proverbial “seat at the table” takes effort, but it allows HR to demonstrate incredible value that a transactional function simply cannot.

If you plan to implement a new – or replace an existing – HR solution, download a copy of our free infographic on “Getting More Value from Your HR Tech Implementation.” 

Written by: Ben Eubanks, Principal Analyst, Lighthouse Research & Advisory