HR Tools That Don’t Play Nice: How to Streamline Your HR Systems

Several tools are available to help you streamline your HR systems, including point systems and all-in-one HR platforms. But which is best for you?

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how to streamline your HR systems

HR administration is no longer manual. It doesn’t have to be, at least. New technology is emerging constantly, and the most successful HR teams know what tech will help them the most. Along those same lines, with HR software becoming more advanced and more accessible, HR management doesn’t have to be that complicated or tedious. As the market for HR tech swells and the world quickens its pace, many HR managers are scrambling to streamline their systems.

There are tons of tools available, with more hitting the market all the time. At first, it can be overwhelming to sift through all of them. That’s why it’s important to identify what type of tool fits your needs best.

Point solutions may be hurting you, not helping you

Many fledgling HR teams use disparate systems that tackle individual needs or problems but don’t integrate into a seamless tool. These effective — and highly specialized — systems or solutions are called “point solutions.”

A point solution is HR tech designed to help with one or two specific functions. And there is a place for this software. In fact, if your HR team only needs to improve in a specific way, point solutions may be your best option.

If your HR team only needs to improve in one specific way, a point solution may be the best option.

Basically, what all of this means is that point solution technology may not be the best fit for your company if you have several problems to solve. For one thing, the specialized software you buy for one specific task may not integrate well with other HR tools. If it doesn’t, then you’ve fragmented your HR systems. One arm of HR’s function doesn’t know what the other is doing, so unnecessary discrepancies and errors abound. This, naturally, makes your job much more difficult than it needs to be.

Most top-of-the-line point solutions are specifically created to address one HR issue, meaning that those pieces of tech are going to be exceptional at solving that particular problem. These are called “best-of-breed” because they are the best of their kind. Pretty straightforward. These are excellent for companies looking to smooth out one or two wrinkles in their HR processes. Need to smooth out payroll? Need something to help track key data? A point solution can help with those things. But for broader structural upgrades, you’ll need something a bit heavier duty.

The boundless benefits of HRIS as an HR system

To avoid this, consider all-purpose HR software. This particular tech is called a human resource information system (HRIS). A fragmented HR software system, made up of unrelated point solutions, can be problematic and inefficient. Where point solutions typically boast a single function or benefit, HRIS are a one-stop-shop for all your HR needs. The initial cost may be higher and “best-of-breed” features may not be part of the deal, but the comprehensive nature of HRIS makes them highly desirable. For bigger HR teams looking to optimize their HR processes, using an HRIS is probably the best option.

Additionally, while upfront costs may be higher, the time and energy you end up saving will likely make the expenditure worth it. It would be helpful to start thinking about what your current HR systems address/do for your company and start gauging general opinions on your HR department’s overall efficiency and performance. There isn’t one answer to this, because no HR team is identical in this respect. Each combination of staffers, software, and office-specific issues is different from the next.

Does one help you streamline your HR system more than the other?

You need to look closely at your company’s needs before deciding on what systems make the most sense.

There isn’t one answer to this because “better” depends entirely on your company’s needs and how you plan to meet them. Also, some tech resources say that the industry is moving away from “either/or” thinking in regards to HRIS and point solutions. Instead, “both/and” is the currently accepted philosophy. Again, though, this is on a case-by-case basis and should be evaluated using issues and trends specific to your company.

It boils down to your HR team’s needs. Of course, those needs are going to vary based on things like:

  • The size of your team
  • How developed your processes and protocols are
  • The quality of your current HR software.

Answer questions such as:

  • What’s robust? What’s not?
  • In which areas are the most improvements or changes required?
  • Is your payroll software clunky?
  • Does your onboarding process leave new hires confused and unsure of how to start?

These need to be discussed and evaluated regularly so that changes can be made swiftly and without a steep learning curve.

These questions can help kickstart broader discussions about where your HR team is at, where they need to be, and how they can get there. As you consider these things, also remember that the market is growing rapidly and that HR tech companies are consistently rolling out new software. In fact, the market is expected to reach $10 billion in value by 2022. Yes, that means more options for you and your company, but it also could potentially mean more confusion for HR staffers looking to streamline their systems and work smarter.

The bottom line

Be intentional about how your HR team functions and be open and communicative about what tools can help up your game. There’s plenty of tech out there for just about every HR need you can think of; it’s just about being transparent about where your team is.

The business landscape is constantly evolving, and HR is an area that’s seeing explosive growth. The COVID-19 pandemic has been particularly stressful for HR managers, forcing teams to rethink strategies, map out new ones, and find better ways to help improve their workforce.

Managing people doesn’t have to be overly stressful or tedious. Nor does it have to be so complicated and time consuming. At the end of the day, that’s what HR tools such as HRIS and point systems are designed to help you accomplish.

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