Benefits and Compensation

Automation—Best of Breed Out, Integration In

Best of Breed Out

Most companies started out their transition to HR automation by going “best of breed”; that is, finding the best time tracking system, the best payroll system, and so on, but now that’s not the way to go, says Lombardi. Now employers want integration of all these processes plus integration with business and financial data for forecasting.

Lombardi, who is vice president and principal analyst of Aberdeen Group’s Human Capital Management research practice, was joined by Jim Mansfield, product marketing manager of Kronos Time Keeper software presented their tips during a recent Kronos-sponsored BLR® webinar.

Standardize to Integrate

Until you standardize, you can’t integrate, says Lombardi. It’s basically the old “garbage in, garbage out” problem.

Automation is the foundation for doing your work more efficiently and effectively; however, you have to do it right. Otherwise, you’ll be singing the song that Lombardi hears too often—“Automation just gets you to the wrong answer more quickly.”


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The goal is simple—integrate all functions from hiring to retiring and everything in between, says Mansfield. However, most organizations now have automated only certain functions, and they are using multiple providers and a variety of systems. That means:

  • Data are out of sync.
  • Maintaining a variety of systems is wearing.
  • Maintaining clumsy interfaces is difficult.
  • You are unable to take advantage of new developments because of the inability to integrate.

Plus, all of that leads to additional manual processing, which is, of course, the opposite effect to that desired.

Old best of breed model

Using the best of breed approach results in a troublesome scenario, Mansfield says. The multiple systems are costly to maintain, produce inferior results, and user companies find themselves unable to take advantage of improvements. In other words, he says, it is a move away from operational excellence. fast love spells

Most companies began to automate because of a desire to manage compliance and overtime. That approach sees employees as an expense to be reduced. But more and more, companies view employees as an asset.

That means not just striving for operational excellence but also striving to gain true competitive advantage from your technology.


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Users Expect to Use Any Device

Today, users, that is, employees, expect everything to be available on every device—phone, tablet, desktop, and they want it all to update and inform, just like their smartphone does. When you get to that point, our experience shows that:

  • Users do not have to be at their desktops.
  • Usage is much higher.
  • Return on investment is much higher.
  • Keeping up with latest and greatest tech developments is easier.

Users Expect Ease of Use

Do you read your new tablet or smartphone manual cover to cover? No, you just take it out of the box and start playing with it, Mansfield says. The expectation is that this will carry over to the workplace.

In tomorrow’s Advisor, more on time and attendance automation, plus an introduction to a March 25 webinar, the DIY Compensation Makeover.