In yesterday’s Advisor, consultant Kim Seals offered tips on new technology in HR; today, we present her examples of new technology that are ready now, plus an introduction to the guide especially for smaller or even one-person HR departments.
Seals, a senior partner with Mercer Atlanta, offered her tips at WorldatWork’s annual convention and exhibition, held recently in Philadelphia.
Examples of New Technology Available Now
Seals offers the following examples of new technology that are available now to help you do your job:
Social recognition tools to nominate, approve, congratulate, and redeem awards efficiently and on the go. One user company achieved an 88 percent increase in satisfaction with rewards.
A next generation device for employee self-service. A tablet mounts on the wall and takes a picture of you when you enter the building, does facial recognition, and tracks attendance. No more fingerprints, no more buddy punching, says Seals.
HOTSEAT offers wellness apps where employees compete to stay active at work. HOTSEAT finds time on your calendar and prompts you to do a 2-minute activity—you can select which one.
Socialtext features collaboration tools embedded in talent management activities. One organization with many home-based recruiters used this for onboarding and training, including managing the organization’s mentor program.
This app allows employees to “shop” for their benefits.
Managers schedule their employees via text messaging. Managers text employees their schedules, and employees can use the system to trade shifts.
This app features recruiting through “Social Exhaust” written on social networks to identify otherwise hidden candidates for open job requisitions. You set up your profile and enter a job to fill. TalentBin scrapes sites (publicly available) for candidates. An engineering company found more hits through talentBin than they found on LinkedIn.
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Here are Seals’ predictions for where we are headed with HR technology:
- Enterprise social networks will become the primary channel for work.
- Smartphone, tablet, and laptop will be all-in-one leveraging DaaS (desktop as a service).
- Mobile-first strategy will overtake the PC.
- Big Data and predictive analytics will drive workforce decisions.
- Bring-your-own-device (BYOD) will soar in the workplace, but companies will implement lockdown software.
- Personal cloud will grow, reducing digital content on PCs.
- Moving to always on, people can track and store what’s in their line of sight.
- Data from wearable electronics will be used to improve productivity and asset tracking.
Checklist for Success
Here is Seals’ checklist of helpful questions concerning new technology:
- Is the next great technology right for your organization?
- Can you align the technology with talent strategies that deliver business outcomes?
- Is it a cultural fit with your organization?
- What’s the opportunity cost of not taking advantage of the technology?
- Will you have the access to the data needed to run the technology?
- Will the technology support the business processes and workflow?
- Will it meet the infrastructure requirements?
- Are you replacing something else? What alternatives are there?
- Can you quantify the return of investment (ROI) with soft/hard dollars, employee/business impact?
- Is the technology provider financially viable?
- Do you have an exit strategy if the provider fails?
- Will you remain in control of your data?
Keeping up with new technology—certainly part of your job description these days, but equally certainly not your only challenging duty. From hiring to firing, HR’s never easy, and in a small department, it’s just that much tougher.
BLR’s Managing an HR Department of One is unique in addressing the special pressures small HR departments face. Here are some of its features:
- Explanation of how HR supports organizational goals. This section explains how to probe for what your top management really wants and how to build credibility in your ability to deliver it.
- Overview of compliance responsibilities, through a really useful, 2-page chart of 23 separate laws that HR needs to comply with. These range from the well-known Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), and new healthcare reform legislation, to lesser-known, but equally critical rules, such as Executive Order 11246. Also included are examples of federal and state posting requirements. (Proper postings are among the first things a visiting inspector looks for—especially now that the minimum wage has been repeatedly changing.)
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- Training guidelines. No matter the size of your company, expect to conduct training. Some of it is required by law; some of it just makes good business sense. Managing an HR Department of One walks you through how to train efficiently and effectively with a minimum of time and money.
- Prewritten forms, policies, and checklists. These are enormous work savers! Managing an HR Department of One has 46 such forms, from job apps and background check sheets to performance appraisals and leave requests, in both paper and on CD. The CD lets you easily customize any form with your company’s name and specifics.
If you’d like a more complete look at what Managing an HR Department of One covers, click the Table of Contents link below.