The 5 step guide to choosing your next HR solution

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The rise of strategic HR teams have made investing in a HR solution such as a cloud based hris for instance, a need rather than a want. Implementing a new HR solution or simply replacing your existing one is not as simple as one thinks. With multiple options, choosing the right vendor, the present and future needs, customisation requirements, statutory requirements and budget restrictions, the decision making process can get not only complicated but overwhelming.

To help you feel a little more in place and confident over your choice, here’s a 5 step guide to choose your next HR solution.

Step 1: Workforce insights.

The foundation of any strategic HR team is that it is data-driven. Hence it is utmost important that one derives relevant and accurate information along with the tools to build solid business intelligence insights. So, it’s time to look for a HR solution that is beyond just payroll. One that provides you with intuitive dashboards and drilled down insights, predictive analytics and simulations that will increase the productivity in your teams by getting you to analyse the data rather than hunting it down and creating manual reports.

Feel free to ask your solutions provider what reports can be derived out of the system and the option of creating customised reports. Once you have your business intelligence data in place, it gives you an upper hand in understanding internal workforce trends, analyse the impact of external economic and labor indicators, identify skill gaps and take necessary measures, manage succession planning and enhance the efficiency of recruitment.

Step 2: Expertise in shared service support.

Strategic HR teams are constantly under pressure to reduce costs, support growth and provide excellent service to enhance employee experience and productivity. This on the other hand creates a necessity to look into shared service models for a feasible alternative.

Working with BPO services provide an organisation the opportunity to focus on more strategic activities while transferring transactional work such as payroll and HR administration tasks to a BPO expert. According to statistics, almost 70% of companies’ expect to use shared services in the next 5 years.

Hence it is important to keep in mind to choose a solutions provider who can support this need with trained experts. While your HR team focuses on the strategic areas such as workforce planning, talent management and employee engagement, a shared service provider can add value through other means. Let’s not forget they are experts who are experienced and certified in HR, payroll and other services. As a result your organisation has access to the latest HR technology tools, efficient HR administration, reduced compliance risk and increased employee satisfaction.

Step 3: Customisation and configuration

Every organisation has its unique requirements and out-of-the-box needs. In order to get the maximum return on your investment, it important to find an HR solution that is flexible to handle your complex requirements without changing the source code. It would be handy if you could find a vendor that not only implements but also maintains complex customisations. This gives you the benefits of a fully integrated HR solution while catering to your unique requirements.

The solution should have the capability to integrate and move legacy data with third party systems. There are multiple benefits by this to the organisation. To begin with it is a single system of truth and a single point of data entry, provides you real-time information from multiple data sources, reduces compliance risk and increases audit preparedness and efficiency.

Step 4: Data hosting

Hosting sensitive employee data outside the operating region of any organisation can be a risk. It is unlikely that a foreign government would request access to employee data. However it is important that you question your vendor regarding the hosting of your data, especially if you belong to the public sector as there may be legal requirements with regard to storing of data.

Some questions to keep in mind is whether the vendor uses offshore support services that can access your employee data, how is the data backed up and the security measures taken towards it and where does the vendor host this back-up data. To be on the safe side, its best to check with your legal department about your data hosting and privacy requirements.

Step 5: Implementation

Moving on to the next big step of the process, Implementation. It’s important to understand that these are complex systems and needs to be carefully implemented and stay with time with the ever changing regulatory & business requirements and technology. Hence the vendor you’re looking for needs to have a well-designed, battle-tested implementation and change management methodology. The idea is to have a solid implementation plan that helps to run things smoothly before, during and after the system integration.

Make sure that your vendor passes on the knowledge to your HR teams from day one. It would be highly advantageous to make them instruct how to make simple alterations on their own. A properly initiated implementation can benefit tremendously. From minimal user disruptions, reduced reliance on busy HR, finance and IT teams, professional project management to make sure all stakeholders are on track, helping employees and users make the transition through effective change management, virtual training options that helps to enhance productivity & engagement and most importantly, creating a great user experience by providing friendly and ongoing support.