HR Tech: The most important asset is still people

HR tech

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Summer Garcia

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written on February 1, 2017

Why is it that HR is just one of those departments people like to complain about? And what role does HR tech have in changing that?

As every part of the business becomes more reliant on technology, increasingly the negative comments about HR are based on an assumption that it can simply introduce a piece of tech, a platform or app to do what whole departments used to do.

The reality is that it doesn’t matter how much technology HR introduces to empower us to do things bigger and better than ever before –people continue to be the most important asset to any business.

HR and learning practitioners understand the relevance of technology and its benefits. But they also understand what some others fail to see – that it takes a robust plan of engagement to extract the full benefits of HR tech, such as cloud solutions. At the end of the day, the tech is just a tool like any other. It’s the people that bridge the value equation.

Research from global advisory firm KPMG revealed that leadership and planning is essential to leverage the full benefits of HR technology – something that supports our own experiences and insights from helping on-board a diverse range of organisations to online training.

According to the survey, HR leaders have big plans to spend money on new tech, but there’s a ‘so what’ quality to their approach that’s raising significant questions about who the HR winners and losers will be in a game that has high stakes for the future.

What is the problem? There is a common view that technology is a simple matter of ‘plug-and-play’ and with relative ease and a wave of a magic wand, their business will just use this new tech and the world will be a better place.

YES it’s quick to fire up, YES it’s intuitive to use, and YES HR departments are increasingly able to launch without the usual hands-on intervention or support of the IT team. But this simplistic approach is failing to deliver the full range of value-driving results that HR functions want and need. Results like data-based insights, smarter decision-making, real value for the bottom line or anything resembling true HR transformation.

Don’t treat HR tech as an IT project but rather work to our strengths as people driven professionals. It should be a solid, top-down implementation plan engaging the entire organisation. The job of HR largely starts once the software is ready to rollout and continues from there – choosing the right vendor and configuring the system is just the tip of the iceberg.

Without shrewd and considered engagement management, HR tech is destined to wind up on the stockpile of broken promises for the business of people. Even worse, it might provide additional fodder for other parts of the business to fire back at us.

Ultimately, when it’s geared well and on-boarded intelligently, technology can facilitate the whole of business transformation, with HR professionals as the catalysts of this new working world. Just as marketing has moved from a cost centre to a revenue generator, the HR function is leveraging HR tech in its toolkit, to become a hub of data-driven insights, smarter decision-making and bottom line value.

Continue to read our full article on how HR managers can successfully guide their organisation through an effective change management process to use technology and to have employee buy-in.


 

In the fifteen years that e3Learning has been in business, we have watched the appetite for HR tech steadily grow in Australia and beyond. We have also witnessed increased knowledge regarding what it takes to ensure that it is adding real value to the business and have been excited to improve our offerings in one of the most innovative spaces – eLearning!

If you’re considering eLearning program options, we’ve already done some of the research for you.

Download the Beginner’s guide to eLearning systems: Change management and capital investment now.

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