Introverts At Work: How to Help Every Employee Reach Full Potential

Introverts at Work in Idea BulbThere’s no getting around it: the modern workplace is designed for extroverts. From the interview process to open-plan offices to networking events to promotional processes based on assertive behavior, it can be a tough maze for introverts to navigate. But as author and speaker Susan Cain reminds us in her well-received TED talk, The Power of Introverts, the loudest talker doesn’t always have the best ideas. Introverts bring a unique set of talents to the table—skills that businesses desperately need.

But how do you help your less vocal employees reach their full potential in a work environment where the loudest voice gets the most recognition?

Here are three ways to foster a culture of growth for every employee.

Give Workers the Freedom to Be Themselves

In our extrovert-leaning culture, leadership is often associated with assertive, dominant behavior. But Cain points out that introverts make excellent leaders because they tend to assess risk more carefully, give other employees the opportunity to share and implement ideas, and foster a culture of creativity. The argument isn’t that introverts are better leaders than extroverts. It’s that each personality type brings different strengths to the table. By giving both extroverts and introverts at work the freedom to be themselves, the organization as a whole will benefit.

Takeaways:

  • Reconsider your office dynamics. Do introverted employees have a quiet space they can work? Do extroverted employees have plenty of opportunities to interact and bounce ideas off team members?
  • Evaluate your interview process. Do you weigh extroverted characteristics more heavily? Do you hire based on gut feelings or non-biased evaluations? If your process leans toward extroverts, consider adding an introvert to the interview team.

Teach Managers to Recognize and Challenge the Potential of Introverts at Work

The employee review can be an intimidating experience for introverts. When managers judge quality of work based on how well an employee interacts with others or expresses himself verbally, introverts often get the short end of the stick. Part of being a good manager is recognizing the strengths in every employee and harnessing those strengths to create a more engaged, productive team. That doesn’t mean trying to make introverts be more extroverted (or vice versa). It simply means understanding what every employee brings to the table and connecting him or her with the resources to succeed. For introverts, that may mean listening more, not interrupting, and respecting their need for space.

Takeaways:

  • Rethink the employee review. Teach managers to assess quality of work and productivity during the review process rather than giving too much weight to personality characteristics. Of course, if the personality itself is creating conflicts with fellow workers or causing productivity snags, that should be addressed. But managers should recognize that a quiet worker isn’t necessarily antisocial, just as a gregarious worker isn’t automatically self-serving.
  • Recognize that different is good. Train managers to value strengths that differ from their own. An extroverted manager may tend to interact primarily with the other extroverts on her team. But by doing so, she would be missing out on a significant portion of the talents and ideas she has at her fingertips.

Hire and Promote Based on Merit, Not Self-Assertion

This may be the hardest thing to change because we often make decisions based on our gut feelings—even when we don’t know it. Still, it pays to take a close look at your hiring process and incorporate merit-based assessments and blind tests where you can. The very qualities that cause introverts at work to recede into the background (like listening instead of talking or preferring a book to a social gathering) often make them excellent leaders and thinkers.

Takeaways:

  • Use blind tests to reduce bias. Blind tests assess employees anonymously, giving employees a chance to evaluate the skills and abilities of the individual rather than judging someone based on external factors. Many tech companies already use them, and other industries have begun adopting these practices as well.
  • Think twice before promoting. That extroverted individual who always seems to have the most ideas may be the best person for a promotion—but he may not. Be sure you have considered all your options and that you recognize both the strengths and weaknesses of your team members before you extend an offer.

It’s important for all employees—both introverts and extroverts—to take time for self-evaluation. When we recognize the talents of every team member, we can build a workplace where the extroverted ideal is challenged and improved by truly collaborative teams.

Improve your employee review process and foster cultural connections with an updated HRIS! Start your search today with our interactive HRIS comparison tool

Stop Drowning In HR Work! 5 Signs It’s Time for New HCM Software

New HCM software streamlines productivityRunning your HR office efficiently is no joke. Everybody has a different idea of how to do things better, from the CEO to the new guy you hired last week. But problems develop when your boss wants you to update—or replace—a process that your current HCMS doesn’t support.

Let’s say your CHRO has been reading up on new performance review methodology and she wants to implement a new process that includes peer feedback, quarterly reviews, and shorter assessment surveys. Great! Except your HCMS can’t do it. So now you have to come up with workarounds and/or manual processes. Not so great.

And that scenario happens more often than we like to think. So what can you do?

You Know You Need New HCM Software When…

HR has evolved over the past decade. Best practices have shifted toward stronger employee engagement and culture strategies with less emphasis on annual reviews and top down hierarchies. But if your HCMS hasn’t evolved along with it, you’re in for some major headaches.

Still, the CHRO doesn’t want to spend money on something that’s going to cost more than it’s worth or  create productivity snafus. So how do you know when it’s the right time to upgrade? Here are 5 signs you’re ready for new HCM software:

  1. You’re stressed out with clunky or inefficient processes.

As an HR professional, it’s your job to implement new strategies and protocols from the C-suite, but you’re trying to do it with Jurassic-era software. When your technology becomes a hindrance to progress, it’s time to replace it.

  1. You can’t stay on top of the work.

If you’re among the large swath of American workers who spend less than half their time on primary job duties, your HCM may be to blame. Filling most of your workday with emails, administrative tasks, searching for information to do the job, meetings, and other non-value-adding necessities costs money. The right HCM software can streamline some of those tasks, putting more productive hours back in your day.

  1. You’ve been the victim of human error one too many times.

When was the last time a typo cost your company money? Hopefully your mistake didn’t make the difference between millions and billions, but it’s still wise to automate tasks wherever you can to prevent error. If you’re still doing payroll manually or keeping data in spreadsheets, it’s time for an upgrade.

  1. You can’t find the data you need.

Do you store data in multiple warehouses? Are key departments disconnected from one another in data silos? That’s not only inefficient, but it also puts you at significant risk of error—not to mention time waste as you search around for the right piece of information. Data integration has become much easier with the advent of cloud computing. Today’s HR software providers store data either in a single system of record (like this one from Ultimate Software) or in integrated modules that manage data seamlessly in the cloud (like BambooHR).

  1. Paper-heavy tasks like onboarding and compliance have become complicated nightmares.

Some tasks require piles of paperwork by their very nature. Applications, forms, contracts—you need an efficient way to process and store these documents that doesn’t turn your office into an episode of Hoarders. If you’re drowning in paperwork, new HCM software can toss you a life preserver with digital documents, e-signatures, and electronic filing options.

How to Make Your Case to the Boss

Convinced that new software is the right course of action? That’s great—but it’s not enough. Too often, software purchasing decisions reside in the hands of people who don’t actually do the work. They may not see the hassles and headaches caused each day by inadequate software. That’s why you need a proven strategy to show the value of a new system.

Start building your case by reading our breakdown of how to justify the cost of software to your boss.

Then head over to our HR software comparison tool to create your software short list in just twenty minutes!

Manager Onboarding: Making Managers Great Again

Manager Onboarding TeamRemember what it was like to be a new employee? Your first day on the job was exciting and scary at the same time. But it’s even more intimidating when you don’t know what people expect from you or where you should turn your attention first.

Now multiply that times 100. That’s how your new managers feel on their first day if you don’t’ take time to prepare them for their roles.

 

So what can you do to set your managers up for success?

Two words: manager onboarding.

Why You Should Invest in Manager Onboarding

Bad managers share the responsibility for low employee morale, poor engagement, and sagging productivity rates. According to Gallup they account for up to 70% of the variation in employee engagement statistics.  

In other words, good managers create happy employees; bad managers create unhappy employees.

But bad management practices aren’t always solely the manager’s fault. Many new managers are thrust into leadership roles with no guidance about expectations, company culture, job responsibilities, or the dynamics of the team.

If you understand the value of onboarding a new employee (better engagement, higher productivity, increased retention), it should make sense that the value increases exponentially for managers. Their actions and reactions will create a ripple effect that extends to all of their direct reports and colleagues.

6 Keys to Effective Manager Onboarding

So we agree that manager onboarding is important—but how do we pull it off? What is the secret to a manager onboarding program that delivers the results you want? Here are seven keys to doing it right.

  1. Communicate Expectations
    Don’t assume that a manager’s years of experience mean he or she will automatically know what to do. Take the time to communicate job guidelines, company culture, and expectations for managers. Make organizational strategies and goals clear as well as the specifics of the job.
  1. Introduce the Team
    Help managers get to know their new team members by providing background on the people they will be managing. Talk about strengths and weaknesses, interpersonal dynamics, and any other information that might be relevant to the role. For example, if someone on the team was passed over for a promotion, let the new manager know so she doesn’t walk into a hornet’s nest.
  1. Plan One-On-One Interactions
    One of the best ways to orient managers to their new team is to facilitate one-on-one meetings during onboarding. These meetings don’t have to be long. Even a few minutes talking with each employee can give the new manager a feel for the opportunities and challenges he might be facing.
  1. Implement People Management Training
    Do you have a training strategy designed to help new leaders become better people managers? Remember, just because an employee is good at her job doesn’t mean she will be a good leader. She needs to know how to motivate people, how to resolve conflict, how to communicate effectively, how to provide helpful feedback, and much more. Don’t just toss her into the role and expect her to sink or swim.
  1. Conduct Personality and Leadership Assessments
    During onboarding, use assessments to get a feel for the new manager’s leadership style and personality. This information will help you equip each manager with the tools he needs for success.
  1. Provide Technology Support
    Use your HRIS to facilitate the manager onboarding process. Many of the same strategies you use for entry-level hires can also carry over into management onboarding. For example, consider assigning a mentor who can monitor progress, create goals, and monitor training. Your HRIS will keep everything on schedule and make it easy to complete paperwork and provide feedback.

People management is no joke. It takes a specific skill set to effectively lead a team of people, keep them on task, and help them reach their personal potential. Manager onboarding is one way to make sure your managers have the tools they need for the job. And that’s good news for your entire organization.

 

Does your HRIS make the onboarding process easy? If not, it’s time for an update! Our HRIS Comparison Tool helps you choose the right software for your company based on your specific requirements. Get your free software short list today!

Follow the Data: How Predictive Analytics Is Changing the Workforce Landscape

Predictive Analytics for BusinessToday’s workforce landscape looks vastly different from the one workers experienced twenty years ago. In fact, you might say mountains have fallen into valleys and new peaks have thrust up from the flatlands. And if by mountains you mean “old methods of workforce management” and by new peaks you mean, “new collaborative methods based on enhanced technology”—then you wouldn’t be far from the truth.

Technology advancements have sent seismic shocks through the workplace, leaving many companies scrambling to realign priorities in their wake.

And if all that sounds a bit melodramatic to you, then think of it this way: People have changed. Their expectations about work have changed. To keep them engaged and productive, you need to change too. Predictive analytics can show you how.

What Does Predictive Analytics Have to Do With It?

We’re seeing exponential growth in sectors like data management and analytics. Along the way, somebody got the bright idea to use all that data to predict future outcomes. It’s called predictive analytics, and it’s surprisingly (or maybe not so surprisingly) accurate.

In the HR office, we use predictive analytics to make projections about employee behavior and performance. For example, knowing how an employee has behaved in the past, how many jobs he has held, and how long he stayed in each position can give you insight into how long he’s likely to remain with your company.

So how can you use predictive analytics to create value for HR?

Why You Should Be Using Predictive Analytics

In their most recent Global C-Suite Study, IBM surveyed more than 5,000 C-level executives to find out what they think about business and technology. The CHRO perspective delved into how organizations can use technology to support employees more effectively, design collaborative workplaces, and create flexible business models.

In order to reach those objectives, companies will need a way to make predictions about skills needs and anticipate employee behavior. That’s the best way to create an environment where employees feel engaged and productive. The report listed five areas in which executives use predictive analytics to make better workforce decisions:

predictive analytics percent graph

As you can see from the percentages in the chart, the number of CHROs using predictive analytics to make decisions in the workplace is still relatively small. But it’s growing.

As predictive analytics becomes more widely understood, we will see more HR executives using the data they collect in their HRIS or other data management systems to make projections about things like: what factors influence an employee’s productivity or engagement; how likely it is that a given employee will leave his or her job; and how small changes in collaboration and communication will impact performance.

We’re still on the brink of the true potential data has to transform our workforces. But savvy businesses have already begun investing in the technology and personnel that can leverage HR knowledge for the greatest business value.

If you’re ready to invest in new technology for your HR office, we can help! Take our free HRIS comparison survey to create your software shortlist.

HR Resolution Check-In: 4 Next Steps for Year-End Success

HR resolution next stepsWith summer in full swing and vacation requests proliferating like mosquitoes, many companies experience a sluggish season in terms of productivity. But that doesn’t mean you can coast. We’re halfway through 2017 (already!) and it’s a good time to pull out your HR resolution list and check in.

Back in January, we posted our top eight HR resolutions for this year. Whether you used our list or came up with your own, it’s time to ask yourself how you’re doing. Have you made progress toward your goals? Is your HR department embracing the digital and cultural revolution—or is it still treating people like business byproducts instead of strategic team members?

The good news is that it’s not too late to kick those HR resolutions into gear. As they say, success is achieved one step at a time. You still have time to get the ball rolling on some of 2017’s top trends before the end of the year.

People Management

Employee engagement is still a top driver of satisfaction and retention. It’s time to set aside old school review practices and implement employee-centric processes that support career development and investments in people. Here are four ways you can get started:

  • Coaching—Give employees real-time feedback to help them become more productive in their roles. New employees will benefit from a mentor who can show them the ropes and help them acclimate to the culture.
  • Reviews—More frequent, actionable reviews produce better results than an end-of-the year checklist. Peer reviews and self evaluations are also great ways to provide feedback on goals and performance.
  • Leadership and DevelopmentRusty Lundquist predicted that 2017 would see major developments in performance, manifested in part through more intentional leadership training and L&D efforts. As collaborative teams become a more common internal structure, leadership skills will bring greater value to the organization as a whole.

Branding and Culture

Developing a strong culture and employer brand positions you as a place people want to work—and that’s more important than ever with job hopping becoming a cultural norm. Focus on these areas:

  • Recruitment Marketing—This is the external component of building your employer brand. Marketing your culture to prospective employees is one of the best ways to attract new talent. Candidates want to know the full picture before they jump on board.
  • Onboarding—Once a candidate has joined your team, you’ll focus on communicating your company values and mission to him or her. Think about what it means to work for your company and how you can infuse that into your onboarding process.
  • Employee Experiences—It does no good to market a fantastic culture if that doesn’t reflect reality. Emphasize positive employee experiences by promoting strong communication, effective management, and frequent feedback.

Analytics

Strategic HR is all about emphasizing the value the HR department can bring to the organization’s bottom line goals: things like profit, productivity, ROI, and shareholder return. In order to demonstrate added value, HR will need to understand the people metrics of the organization and how they support those bottom line goals. Here are four of the most important:

  • Turnover—What are your turnover rates and how much does it cost to replace an employee?
  • Retention—How long do employees typically stay with your company? What have you done to increase retention and what numbers can you show to demonstrate results?
  • Performance—How quickly do you bring new employees up to full productivity? How can you make employees more efficient or more effective?
  • Engagement—How engaged are your employees? What impact does that have on the first three metrics?

Technology

HR technology is evolving quickly. We’ve already seen advances in automation and mobile technology, and you can expect to see more of the same heading into next year. Bring your HR department up to speed with these components:

  • Mobile—Consider mobile apps to manage time/attendance, performance feedback, goal setting, internal communication, schedule planning, and more. Make it easy for employees to handle HR tasks from their phones or tablets.
  • Performance Tracking—Use your HR software to help employees set goals, complete training assignments, and respond to feedback. Managers can track employee performance using alerts, notifications, reminders, and goal setting features.
  • HCM Systems—If your entire HR software platform needs an overhaul, look for an HCM system that provides the capabilities we’ve discussed above. Position yourself to take the right steps this year and into the future with a software system that helps you achieve your goals.

Transparency has become the new buzzword for effective HR departments. As you implement new processes and technology, transparency will help you strengthen your culture and communicate it effectively to your employees.

And that will be something to celebrate come December.

 

Chasing the HCM Unicorn: A Simple 3-Step Plan for Buying HR Tech

3 Steps to Buying HR Tech“Buying HR software is fast and easy!” Said no one ever. Shopping for software takes time, intense effort, and the equivalent of a master’s degree in research. It’s like chasing a unicorn—that magical, mythical creature that probably doesn’t exist, but—wow, it sure would be awesome if it did.

The ideal HR software platform will help your HR personnel get more done in less time with fewer staff members, while also boosting engagement and morale among your workforce. If you can find a solution that increases productivity and boosts your bottom line, all that research and time is worth it. But is HR tech like that really out there? Will it really do everything it says it can do? And if it will, can you afford to buy it?

Yes it is, yes it will, and yes you can. Here’s how.

Assess Your Challenges

The first step is to know what problems your HR department needs to solve. Don’t get enamored by the latest trend only to end up purchasing a system that exceeds your needs—and your budget. Ask questions like:

  • What friction points have we encountered in our processes?
  • What new capabilities do we need?
  • Which business needs are most pressing?
  • Which current processes must be preserved in the new software?
  • Which employees will be affected by the change?

Gather detailed information during this stage so you’ll know what the new software must bring to the table. As you evaluate systems, you’ll be able to check items off and begin to narrow down your short list.

Know Your Options

The next step is to assess the capabilities offered by each vendor. What features are working for you and which ones need an overhaul? Work through each software module to determine which platform most closely matches your needs:

  • Payroll: Do you need new payroll software or do you want to keep your current payroll solution?
  • Employee Engagement: What employee engagement services do you value most? Do you like your current self-service portal or do you want to add new capabilities like communities or a scheduling calendar?
  • Benefits: Do you need deeper benefits capabilities? How straightforward is your benefits enrollment process?
  • Recruiting: What services do you need from an ATS? Do you want better branding for your candidate process? Do you want to store candidate information for future reference? How does your onboarding process function?
  • Time/Attendance: Do you need geotracking capabilities for remote clock-ins? Do you have employees with work-from-home arrangements? Do you want a scheduling calendar your employees can access themselves? Do you have employees in different time zones?
  • Learning Management: What training opportunities do you offer your employees? How do you set and track goals or required training courses? How do your employees access training materials?
  • Reporting: Do you need position control or custom reporting options? Can you customize the standard reports in the system? Can you create new reports efficiently?

Meet Your Vendor

The final step is deciding which vendors match your needs well enough to warrant a demo and a quote. During the software demo, you’ll have time to ask questions, see examples, and find out exactly how that new employee engagement tool really works. When you get your quote, look carefully at what services the implementation process includes, how the pricing is calculated, and what additional charges you should expect.

If you want to catch a unicorn, you have to study it carefully. Buying HR tech that can deliver the results you want demands that same careful analysis and knowledge of your quarry.

The good news is that we’ve made the research process easy for you. When you’re ready to start comparing vendors, our HRIS comparison tool will do the most labor-intensive part of the research for you. Simply input your requirements and our tool will create your vendor short list based on your needs.

And before you can say “Unicorn Frappuccino,” you’ll have the unicorn in the bag.

Looking for more slam-dunk resources? Check out our comprehensive HRIS Buyer’s Guide for your step-by-step guide to a no-regrets HR tech purchase!

 

About the Author: Susan McClure is our resident content marketer at PEOCompare.com. She writes about HR outsourcing, HRIS, and general employment issues. When she isn’t writing, you might find her browsing shelves at the library, exploring a local hiking trail, or digging in the garden with her family and fur kids.

HRIS Certification – What’s it Worth to You?

HRIS Certification: Stand Out From the CrowdAs HR technology continues to evolve, practitioners need to understand not only the functionalities of the software they use every day, but also how to derive the most benefit from emerging capabilities. Managers need a qualified support staff that can quickly adapt to software changes and leverage those new features to add value to the HR department and the company as a whole.

One way to stay abreast of the flood of new technology appearing on the HR software market is to seek HRIS certification through a trusted provider.

Technology and Today’s HR Practitioner

HR software and the accountability for outcomes has evolved rapidly with advances in technology. The needs and expectations of today’s workforce demand a new level of education for HR practitioners.

Many HR department personnel pursue continuing education at community colleges, online schools, and for-profit universities. However, each venue presents hurdles in terms of cost or convenience that can discourage companies from adopting them. Some progressive employers sponsor participation in workshops, training seminars, and programs offered through local professional organizations.

In this post, we’ll take a look at educational opportunities that assess knowledge and skills while also keeping participants informed about the latest developments in HCM and HRIS technology.

The HRIP Certification Program

The International Association of Human Resources Information Management (IHRIM) has created the only recognized certification program in human resources information systems provided through the Human Resources Information Program (HRIP). The program boasts that participants will “cover all aspects of HRIM/HRIS, including the latest trends and best practices.”

  • The HRIP Certification exam assesses the knowledge, skills, and abilities of staff in HR information management.
  • The studies expand knowledge and understanding of HRIM and HRIS technology, functions, trends, and best practices.
  • Three delivery systems match testing opportunities with participant needs: convenient testing centers, proctored exams at local sites, and hosted testing at HR industry events.

Candidates who pass the exam for the Human Resources Information Professional (HRIP) Certificate will be certified for three years. To continue the certificate beyond three years, recipients must re-certify with proof of 60 credit hours of continuing education.

Qualifications

There is no prescribed set of courses for the HRIP Certificate. However, there are some conditions worth attention:

  1. The best candidates have five years of experience in working with human resources technology solutions or information management.
  2. IHRIM offers courses to complete re-certification requirements, but the courses and webinars can also help prepare for the HRIP exam.
  3. HRIP offers exam preparation at rates discounted for IHRIM members.

HRIP has no specific curriculum, but it does offer a blueprint of preferred areas of expertise:

Study Domain: % of Certification Exam

Technology Strategy and Solutions Assessment: 15%
HR Technology and Business Processes: 30%
Systems Selection, Implementation, and Upgrades: 30%
HR Systems Operations: 25%

Education partners

Participants can take courses through approved vendors such as ADP, Kronos, WorkForce, and other leading HRIS vendors to meet re-certification requirements. Courses offered by HR.com and other human resources professional membership associations may prepare candidates for certification, but their credits may not be directly applicable.

Webinars and Online Courses

There are many online resources you can take advantage of to stay up-to-date on HR technology advancements. Many of these courses count towards recertification credits for HRIP certification, HRCI certification, or SHRM certification. Courses cover a wide variety of topics such as HCM payroll reform, leave management, candidate selection, integrated tools, implementation, and more.

What is HRIS Certification Worth to You?

The need for HRIS education may exceed the ability for employers to provide the training or improve the competencies of employees assigned to HRIS duties. The available certifications and online resources can help fill the gap, but they also have drawbacks, primarily in terms of cost on the one hand and lack of comprehensive subject coverage on the other.

We would love to know your thoughts on the matter! Do you see a need for HRIS certification? What is your opinion on the IHRIM certificate program and the cost effectiveness of the training. Do webinars and online courses provide enough fresh, relevant information to keep employees up to date without certification?

What is HRIS certification worth to your human resources operation?

 

HR Tech Trends Driving Changes In Performance Management

HR Tech Trends In Performance ManagementIn February’s issue of HR Magazine, Josh Bersin published an article about 9 HR tech trends that will transform the market over the next year. The article talked about how the shift from cloud to mobile combined with new technology such as AI and wearables has altered the way we think about HR in the workplace.

In this post, I’d like to look at just three of those trends as they relate to people management: the performance management revolution, real-time engagement evaluation, and people analytics.

 

Game-Changing Performance Management

The shift away from annual reviews continues, with increased automation for team-oriented HR and data-driven processes. Software providers like BambooHR have responded with increasingly flexible performance management tools such as:

  • Flexible surveys
  • Online assessments
  • Team management
  • Activity streams
  • Goal setting and tracking

For example, companies can design their own performance management surveys, making them shorter, more frequent, and with flexible ranking systems designed for regular, actionable feedback. Bamboo’s software allows for custom configuration with goals, peer reviews, and team assessments available based on role:

BambooHR Manager Assessment

 

Engagement Evaluation Tools

Frequent feedback is one of the best ways to keep your finger on the pulse of your organization. As HR tech evolves, Bersin predicts that feedback will become even more important. Already, many systems have begun integrating feedback options into performance management systems with the goal of better understanding and meeting the needs of their current employees. And as the demand for quality talent continues to build, feedback can also be used to make cultural improvements that will position your company as a more attractive place to work.

With new software capabilities, companies can schedule feedback based on their performance management structure whether that’s monthly, quarterly, or after an event such as a change in the company’s organizational structure. Notifications let employees know when their feedback is required and also send reminders about tasks and announcements:

BambooHR Feedback Notifications

 

Predictive People Analytics

Everybody’s talking about data, but not many understand the true potential of analytics as it relates to your workforce. As HR software vendors begin building deeper capabilities into their products, companies will be able to leverage the available data to make better decisions, recommend training and role changes, and predict future employee behavior.

Bamboo, for example, offers a performance ranking graph that shows how employees rank as compared to others on both performance and engagement:

BambooHR Performance Ranking Graph

Information like this can help predict performance and retention over time. In addition to tracking and assessing past behavior, people analytics also endeavors to consolidate HR data and motivate change. In the next few years, we’ll increasingly see systems that can:

  • Evaluate patterns of communication based on e-mail habits
  • Predict where security leaks may occur
  • Monitor time management habits
  • Identify job change recommendations
  • Suggest training based on work roles

Bersin urges companies to invest in analytics now, because it may take some time to clean up your data, eliminate redundancies, and hire the right people to mine useful information from the data in your system.

Of course, these aren’t the only HR tech trends you should be keeping your eye on. As software continues to evolve, we’ll see advances in cognitive processing, recruiting, learning products, and much more. Will your company be ready to capitalize on that forward motion?

Looking for better capabilities from your HCM? Take our survey to find your perfect software match!

Six Non-Negotiables to Consider Before You Buy HCM Software

Things to Consider Before You Buy HCM SoftwareHow do you know when it’s time to buy HCM software? Answer: When the inefficiencies and redundancies start costing you money, resources, and morale.

As your business grows and changes, old processes can’t keep pace with the new requirements of your workforce—and that means lost productivity and frustrated employees. Often, the solution is better software, but the sheer number of options on the market quickly gets overwhelming.

To help sort through the available features and functions, we sat down with representatives from ECI, a SaaS cloud-based human capital management solution designed to automate critical workflows and keep your HR department on track.

How to Choose the Right HCM

Like most software solutions, HR platforms comes with a wide range of options. Here are six of the most important features you should consider before you buy HCM software.

Hosting

Almost all of today’s HCM solutions operate in the cloud in some capacity. But not all cloud solutions are created equal. There are different hosting options on the market, from managed private cloud solutions to software-as-a-service (SaaS). Saas solutions offer deep capability to companies at an affordable price, which makes them very attractive. You avoid heavy infrastructure costs and you benefit from the security and scalability of a robust solution designed for multiple business models. Other hosting and cloud solutions come with their own set of benefits, so take the time to evaluate your organization’s needs and requirements as you consider your options.

Data Storage

ECI’s solution uses a single system of record to store and access data, meaning that modules can share data with one another, and changes made in one module will automatically update in other modules. All employees can access the data they need from a single point, and you can manage access capabilities based on an employee’s security clearance.

Single Source Vs. Best of Breed

Demand for better integration across modules has prompted many HCM providers to create single source solutions rather than best-of-breed solutions. The difficulties associated with integrating multiple modules from different vendors can be overcome, but single source solutions offer broad functionality while keeping costs low. There are advantages and disadvantages to each option, so make your decision based on the functionalities you need and your budget considerations.

System Capabilities

We won’t go in-depth into the many system capabilities on the market, but the bottom line is that you should dig deep into the processes of your organization to understand your requirements before you buy HCM software. Different solutions bring different strengths to the table, and you’ll want to match those to your specific needs.

For example, ECI has a robust payroll functionality that allows you to perform essential actions like:

  • Calculate gross pay based on net amounts
  • File local and federal taxes
  • Track and report wage garnishments and remittance
  • Calculate percentage raises for union workers
  • Import files
  • Utilize effective dating

ECI’s strengths also include their analytics tools and dashboards, self-service tools, and reporting configurability.

Analytics

Reporting is the backbone of HR. You need a strong analytics tool with deep reporting capabilities in order to make the important decisions that keep your workforce functioning every day.

ECI’s analytics tool, for example, gives you the ability to drill down deep into your data, viewing information in different configurations.  You can break down the data by various demographics, such as gender, work state, and ethnicity. In this example, the chart on the left shows the termination breakdown by code across the entire workforce, while the chart on the right shows the code distribution of female workers only.

ECI Analytics Chart

ECI’s tool gives you the freedom to view data in any number of configurations based on your reporting needs—and it’s all with the click of a button.

Look/Feel

While look and feel might seem like a less important factor, the truth is that the usability of the software can significantly impact employee productivity. The look and feel of your software can also make a difference in recruiting and onboarding, where user experience communicates the culture of your company to candidates and new employees.

Supporting Business Growth With HCM Software

HR is directly tied to the growth and morale of your workforce—and therefore, of your company. By giving your HR staff the right tools to do their jobs efficiently, you contribute to a more engaged, satisfied workforce across the enterprise. And that’s a direct contributor to productivity and business profit.

Ready to take your research deeper? Take our comprehensive survey to find out which HR software provider meets your unique business specifications

 

New Research on How to Foster Happier, More Committed Employees

What drives employee fulfillment

Every employer can benefit from a more positive, committed, and engaged workforce. This means going beyond meeting the basic needs of your employees and figuring out what really drives their fulfillment on the job.

In this exclusive live webcast, learn how to apply powerful new research from The Center for Generational Kinetics by focusing on the three true drivers of employee experience.

Can’t attend the webinar? No worries. Register for the event, and you’ll be sent a recording.

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