This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
Gaining efficiency through HR technology
An information guide
consulting | software | solutions
Compound the current job market with the complexities of the recruitment process – typically involving many stakeholders and far too much paperwork – and it’s no wonder that recruitment is often the most costly process within HR itself. Today’s HR systems optimise the end-to-end recruitment procedure by automating the workflow around each stage of the process. they will release versions of the software that enable you to easily gather the information required for reporting. it’s often a struggle to command stakeholder interest. fines. but reduces admin. pushing strategy. whether responsibility is largely HR-owned or devolved to managers. you get to focus on the key attributes of the applicants and which recruitment methods yield the best results. How to select a new HR solution • The research process • Partnering • Choose your project team • Choosing the technology • Requesting a demo 4. even offer tea and sympathy. Yet as you’ve probably experienced yourself. And while you may know a fair bit about HRIS systems. the risk associated with managing increasingly complex legislation is a key concern for many organisations. Key functions p1 How today’s integrated solutions can help you better manage key areas of your organisation. Implementation • Key stages p2 p5 p5 While this list is not exhaustive. Key functions Legislation & compliance From the introduction of the ‘fit note’ to the knock-on tax and salary effects of anticipated public spending cuts. Online recruitment Whether using agencies or not. 2. an important consideration is the ability to advertise (and accept CVs) online. Workflow and automation But it doesn’t have to be so.Introduction The evolution of HR HR’s remit has changed a lot since yesteryear. for example. As HR has evolved from satellite function to central hub. it should enable all participants to interact with the software at the relevant stages of the process – and that goes for recruitment agencies and applicants too. Includes checklists to help you identify the functions of your ideal system. and at worse. cuts paper waste and ensures you can provide the fastest possible response to potential talent. Most systems cover standard procedures. they provide you with the accurate and timely information you need to lower costs and improve employee return on investment. Good vendors will keep you informed of changes in tax and employment law so you can determine what applies to your organisation. Version 1 . lawsuits – all of which have time and cost implications. A recruitment solution should fit with your organisation. Indeed. and by making it easier for applicants to apply and recruiters to respond. Signs you’ve outgrown your existing software • Identifying the factors • Identifying the impact 3. the following gives you an idea of important legislation that may be relevant to your organisation: • ISA Registration (Independent Safeguarding Authority – replaces CRM) • Immigration and Asylum • Fit Note • Maternity • Paternity • SIR (Further Education sector) p6 p6 p6 p6 p6 p7 p7 p7 Recruitment & selection Hiring is back on the agenda for most organisations. • Legislation & compliance • Recruitment & selection • Learning & development • HR reporting • Business intelligence • Self-service • Payroll • Document management • Health & safety • Absence p2 p2 p3 p3 p3 p3 p4 p4 p4 p4 2 ©Access 2010. the fierce competition for places doesn’t make recruiting any easier. Software releases More importantly. While some HR managers are still expected to hire. not paper. This paper is designed to demonstrate how you can do just that. Utilising the latest technology. downloadable via the internet or email. Most regulations involve significant reporting requirements – mistakes could lead to penalties. most are predominantly focused on becoming business partners. fire. 1. E&OE. About this guide This guide is split into four key areas: 1. HR solutions have evolved apace. so finding the functionality you need shouldn’t be too difficult – but make sure that updates are supplied to you regularly and in a straightforward format. Greater visibility Today’s solutions – often referred to as HRIS (Human Resources Information Systems) are designed to give you visibility of every area of your organisation. The best HR software no longer operates separately from the daily running of the business but is strategically aligned with it. In other words. The good news is that today’s HR solutions are designed to make keeping on top of your company’s legal obligations as straightforward as possible. By decreasing the time taken to get positions ‘out there’. This not only enables you to attract the broadest audience. managing compliance in 2010 looks no less complex than in previous years.
a good system would have the ability to provide different dashboard views to you. department and division. It takes information held in your business system and makes it easily available. your HR team. E&OE. The following gives you an idea of the functionality to look out for: • User-configurable views • Real-time information • Information delivered via a range of graphical formats (charts. all of which will help ensure you gain maximum ROI per employee. ©Access 2010. both to view or to edit – typically via a web browser for anytime access. all presented in graphical formats and updated in real-time. demand for self-service functionality has grown significantly – understandably. Any system should give you complete visibility and straightforward analysis of all the following: • Personnel details (including diversity. closely monitor activities undertaken and maximise your knowledge of your employees’ abilities. Some organisations for example provide free training on the basis that the member of staff stays with the company for a specified time period.1 Equally. learning & development and performance management. web-based dashboards. training needs and recruitment analysis. by employee. As these areas impact each other. Business intelligence takes many forms including Excel based add-ins. Managing overlap The key to managing this effectively is choosing a HR system that gives you visibility of the linked areas of training. your staff and management. work permits and employment checks) • Job and salary history (including multiple jobs.g. Dashboards draw information held in your wider HR system and present specific KPIs such as headcount. there are compelling reasons to provide quality staff training – not least because your best talent will steer you through times of difficulty. LOS. turnover. For example. accurate information when and where it’s needed. headcounts and turnover). salary scales and bands) • Employment details (including exit interviews and Ts & Cs) • Disciplinary and grievance (including stage tracking and documents) • Skills and competencies (linked to training and appraisals) • Absence and holidays (including work patterns. Self-service works primarily by saving time. you want to be sure that the training you’re providing your employees is strategically aligned with your business objectives. as an extension of your company intranet. given its ability to help organisations do far more with less. costs and equal opportunities • Generate bulk correspondence by post or email • Advertise/retain details of speculative candidates • Training course administration • Online booking • Ability to cater for CPD membership • Integration with Microsoft Office (for diarising) • Online appraisals (including competency models) • NVQs • Skills search and management Business intelligence One of the key drivers behind today’s generation of HR software is to deliver timely. gauges. providing leadership with better management information and reporting is one of the top three-ranked challenges for HR professionals in 2010. listings. The ability to drill-down into the source data ensures that decision-makers can quickly spot any issues and get to the root of any problems quickly. pension. fleet management.Good HR software will enable you to: • Create vacancies • Manage the hire process • Enable applicants to apply online • Provide web access for agencies • Monitor success.g. self-service can be deployed across your organisation and can be made to fit with your existing ways of working. Learning & development Even in a period of economic recovery. This not only saves significant time pulling information from separate sources but ensures the information you’re analysing is accurate. Some of the key learning & development functionality to look for includes: Self-service Over the last few years. If you are unable to provide the level of training they expect. you can then see where the skills gaps are. A good HR system will give you detailed analysis of costs. Closely related to reporting but going beyond it. for example. Useful for both staff and managers. then they’re likely to look elsewhere – a fact supported by the 2009 National Management Survey which found that 46% of staff blame a lack of training opportunities as a reason for leaving their organisation. user-friendly report writers and most recently. attendance and effectiveness. P11D • Salary modelling • Organisational structure (e. Version 1 3 . part-time calculations) • Health & safety (including accident reporting and medicals) • Benefits. rolling presentations etc) • Ability for dashboards to incorporate information from external sources (e. RSS feeds) HR reporting According to a survey by talent management company Taleo. See what you need to The power of this type of reporting lies in its configurability and ease of use.2 The first step to efficient. pain-free reporting is having a system that holds all employee information in one place.
36% of respondents experiencing problems with absence records and of those. This not only reduces paper and waste. P60s. the ‘onboarding’ of new starters and updates to employee information. and department as well as providing specific Health and Safety analysis such as Riddor reporting. timesheets and training requests. Version 1 . This way. headcount or budget spend. is a powerful way to improve communication and empower employees. self-certification forms and holiday bookings. Self-service for staff For employees. author. Integrating with a payroll from the same product family as your HR solution has the advantage of linking dynamically. policies and job descriptions) Absence Reducing the cost of absence is perhaps the key priority for any organisation investing in a new HR solution. however many employees you have. E&OE. it’s easy to see how self-service can speed the flow of accurate information into the system.g. and appraisals. the ability to access information that’s important to staff such as payslips.Manager self-service Manager self-service cuts down the time taken to carry out administration such as approving staff holiday. you have the complete visibility of information needed to reduce and manage risks within your organisation. you of course need an accurate way to record and monitor absence-related information.g. For advice on selecting a payroll solution. date range • Search CVs by keywords (e. including for example. paper-based and otherwise. reducing duplication and improving accuracy. sickness. a full workflow for the authorisation and update of HR information to the payroll. Some of the functions to look for include: • Ability to support all standard file types (e. Excel and image files. training. the ability to store these documents centrally is therefore key to the overall efficiency of your operation. ‘inadequate absence information recorded’ and ‘inaccurate records’ came in top with 74% and 66% of employers encountering problems respectively. enabling you to report incidents by. for example. click here. For example. PDF. Word. but enables fast retrieval. this would enable your staff to enter their own training requests. staff and managers can go online to enter the information required. Health & safety reporting Good systems will enable you to slice and dice this data any way you require. A HR solution makes the process much simpler by providing you with a web-based accident book. holiday. for example. dispersing tasks out into the wider organisation. But before you can make a dent in absence figures. some of the most common ones include: • Holiday/planned absence requests and authorisation • Training requests and authorisation • Online appraisals • Sickness self-certification • Vacancy requests and authorisation • Timesheets Seamless data transfer Payroll systems obviously vary but the good HR providers will enable this information to be transferred seamlessly between the two areas of the business. applicants and employees) • Ability to hold non-employee specific documents (e. no business can afford not to maintain up-to-date health and safety records. It can also show this information via easy-grasp formats. self-service reduces administration within the HR department. Payroll One of the key drivers in HR software is the ability to share common information with other departments – payroll in particular. leading to inaccurate or incomplete records. 4 ©Access 2010. But timeconsuming. spreadsheets to correspondence. As your business grows. Good software providers will provide a wide range of self-service specific processes.3 Absence self-service The priority of a good HR solution therefore is to make collecting this information as easily and costeffectively as possible. However. type. Key issues Research by IRS for XpertHR suggests that this is problematic for a substantial amount of companies. employee. Document management From training documents to CVs.g. In a recent survey. Just some of the information you should be able to share with payroll include: • New starter/leaver information • Employee names and addresses • Job/organisation details • Bank and salary details Health & safety Whether you operate out of an office or a factory. What’s more. as well as scanned hard copy documents) • Ability to locate documents by individual and content • Search facilities by category. enabling managers to view KPIs relating to their department’s turnover. Self-service is ideal for this. Aligning these two systems will smooth out spikes of work associated with. HR is packed with documents. With the responsibility for entering information into self-service lying with the employee and not HR. Via selfservice. paper-based administration often means information is recorded long after the event. This stands whether the payroll is held in a separate software package or via an electronic interface with a payroll bureau. capturing all the information needed in just a few minutes.
higher staff turnover and an increased requirement for recruitment • Lack of integration between HR and payroll means time is tied up in duplicate tasks e.g. When choosing a HR system. Version 1 5 . increased time to hire. For example. For example. Ultimately you need this information as a report and a good vendor will be able to accommodate what you need to see and how you need to see it. meaning a loss of efficiency elsewhere. recording timesheets. maintaining a corporate training curriculum etc? ©Access 2010. running payroll. Being webbased. processing employee information such as personnel updates. Authorisation All good systems will provide an authorisation workflow to ensure that all absence requests are approved prior to updating your HR solution. you could create a series of steps to ensure company-specific processes always take place in a certain way. if the main approver is on holiday. hospital visits) and for managers to quickly record sickness and other unplanned absences. as a calendar) is another highly useful feature. appraisals. greater internal resource and limited visibility of recruitment effectiveness • Poor systems to manage absence can mean limited visibility on absence days. you should be able to get this data on-demand. loss of skills and knowledge. HR. might involve the HR manager. staff and managers alike can access the system easily. using workflow tools.g. payroll. Information is never in sync. And as you may have discovered yourself. recruitment and training databases?) • What would the bottom line benefits be if real-time data was available throughout your entire organisation? Identifying the impacts Once you’ve identified that your existing HR system is no longer fit for purpose – the next step is to work out the tangible impacts of not changing.Via a web-based interface. the time comes when this existing system no longer measures up. Workflow As we’ve seen with self-service. automatically calculating pro-rated holiday) • Are you relying on spreadsheets/pulling information from multiple databases to run the reports that you need? • Can you easily report on the information required to fulfill your legislative requirements? • How much re-keying is being done to maintain multiple systems (e. Signs you’ve outgrown your HR software Identifying the factors All organisations. Requests should be able to pass through as many levels as required and take a precise route around your company – even if an approver is on holiday themselves! (see below for more about workflow). this technology enables staff to request absence of any conceivable type (e. leading to inaccurate reporting 2. new starters and leavers. For others. we’ve summarised a list of questions to help you understand where your existing software may be holding you back: • How much time is spent maintaining personnel records. ensure that it gives you the freedom to design workflows yourself without the need for additional consultancy. This last point is particularly useful during the authorisation process. To get you started. and during the absence authorisation process.g. at any time. The previous section should have given you some ideas about how a modern HR system can help you overcome any challenges that you currently face. however small. today’s HR software enables us to re-engineer our existing processes and make them work how we want them to – not how they’ve always been. But to help you further. Seeing at-a-glance who is in the office for the days and weeks ahead is invaluable when planning workloads. E&OE. since it lets you design processes using Windows’ familiar and intuitive ‘drag and drop’ tools. leading to higher number of lost days and no way of spotting frequent offenders • Insufficient process for employee training and development may lead to lower productivity. For some companies. for example. Flexibility Good systems enable you to incorporate any number of steps and for processes to take place in parallel. doctor’s appointments. lower output. since it will automatically divert responsibility for approvals to another person in the chain – for example. • Can your system deal with flexible working/part time staff (e. a line manager and the employee. it’s business growth that drives the change from a paperbased system to an electronic one. helping speed the flow of information into the central system. rely on some form of system to manage their HR operations. holidays. here are some you may want to consider: • Manual recruitment processes tie up key employees on recruitment tasks. authorised and followed-up according to your organisation’s specific policies and schedule.g. Workflow technology plays a key part in this. Appraisals. A system based on the Windows Workflow Foundation (WWF) is ideal. Analysing absence The ability to view this information visually (for example. whether via standard reports or user-friendly Business intelligence tools. Workflow would allow for the required information to be captured. it’s the lack of functionality that’s the catalyst behind a new modern system. if Bradford Factor analysis is important to your HR strategy.
This will help to determine time intensive activities built into the current HR system and weigh these against the bottom-line benefits of a new system. it can be difficult to know where to start. learning and development documentation is held separately to personnel records. but it’s important to check that these updates are made regularly. To help you in your search. It should give you a good idea of which vendors should be on your shortlist – and those that definitely shouldn’t! • How long have you been in business? Check that you are dealing with an established vendor • How many HR installs have you completed? A greater number of installs means a higher likelihood of encountering and fixing a broad range of customer issues • Do you develop your own software or resell on behalf of a software author? The former has the advantage of a ‘straight through’ line to the software developer but check how this support will be provided • Do you serve other organisations in my industry? Any provider worth considering will be able to provide a range of customer case studies/testimonials • Do you have a reference site in my sector? The ability to ask existing clients about their experiences with both the system and provider may prove decisive in the final stages of negotiation. and means there is no “single view of the truth” • Bottlenecks in the HR process cause delays in workflow. In fact. when they could be adding value to the business • Too many manual processes. 3. not least your size. ©Access 2010. finance and IT. Some of the questions to ask include: • Was the implementation completed on time and within budget? • Would you recommend the product? • How was the vendor at explaining technical issues? • Were you delivered what was promised? • What do your users like most/least about the software? • What training do you offer? However well-designed. duplication and re-keying of data which is costly from a process perspective. Version 1 . you can begin a cost analysis of current processes. Include HR administrators and managers in the process to increase buy-in and personal responsibility for the overall decision. After all. e.• Personnel information e. most of these may turn out to convert to the bottom line – for example.g. and in an accessible format. How to select a new HR solution The research process With many suppliers offering seemingly similar functionality. causes errors. manual tasks such as entering personal details and recording sickness. there will be an inevitable learning curve as new users get to grips with the software. Satisfactory answers to the following will ensure that this process is as pain-free as possible: • Does you offer full product training? • Would you be able to provide training at our site? • Can you tailor the training to meet different end user requirements? How would you go about that? • What support methods do you offer? A hotline is the very minimum you should expect. While many time-savings are usually the easiest (and most compelling) benefits to clarify. The importance of partnering Partnering with the right vendor is key to ensuring that your HR implementation is a success. This process will make it easy to see if there are any gaps between the expected benefits and actual software capabilities. an increase in staff retention through the provision of stimulating and targeted training. Understanding the limitations of your existing system – and quantifying what you want to achieve – is a great step in the right direction. impacting staff engagement • Risk is increased without an easy way to collect all the relevant information required for legislative reporting and compliance Conduct a cost analysis Based on the inefficiencies identified above. 6 Choose the technology Choosing the right platform for your new solution will depend on many factors. Your cost analysis can also be used to benchmark the success of your new HR system – an exercise that you’ll need to undertake on a regular basis as your system and needs grow and evolve. your business processes. communications and reporting across all areas of the organisation • Days (and costs) are consumed in HR as staff spend their time performing mundane. your aim is to implement a solution that benefits your entire business – not just the chosen few! This means involving a mix of primary users . your HR team (if you have one). as well as secondary users (management and staff). appraisals. we’ve come up with a list of questions to ask.that’s you. meaning lack of visibility. • What’s covered in the cost of my annual licence? How are updates charged for? • How do I ensure my software stays compliant? All suppliers should comply with the legislation available at the time of release. Ask about opening hours and response times as well as the ability to provide remote (internet based) support and on-site consultancy for those more complex issues. playing an active role in shaping the solution as your organisation evolves.g. Choose your project team Involving a cross-section of people is key to the success of your implementation. Your aim is to find willing representatives from each division who will become product champions. A good vendor will not object to being thoroughly interviewed about how their proposed solution can effectively reach your company’s expectations. your case should also include an assessment of intangible benefits. your users and your budget. E&OE. holiday requests.
you have the choice between server-based solutions (where the software is installed and maintained on your site) or hosted (software accessed and maintained via the internet).NET solution gives you significant flexibility. February 2010. • Install software • Map data • Identify reporting & security requirements • Cleanse data and convert Phase 3 – training Exposes key users to the software and ensures requirements listed in the selection process are met. • Account management • Personal helpdesk support • Remote support • Ongoing consultancy • Optional user groups and training • Regular correspondence e. The next step is to schedule a demonstration of the software so that you can see it in action! Asking vendors to demonstrate examples of your more pressing issues will help you compare systems sideby-side. The following covers the key stages of a typical implementation plan so you know what to expect. Phase 1 – pre-project planning Ensures stakeholders and project team know exactly what’s required and when. tools and clarity you need to make effective decisions. Carry on training. you may require a mix of the two. p12 3 Personnel Today. ensure that the system is easy to maintain. We believe your solution must be ready for the future. quickly and with certainty. allowing you to shape your solution in-house without extended consultancy. The HR Director. p16. 2 Woods. since this will reduce your ongoing cost of ownership. the next stage is to get the implementation underway.com/theaccessgroup. Whichever option you go for. proven and relevant to your company. R. ensuring that the project is delivered on time and to budget requires professional project management. Challenge of doing more with less. we combine our innovative software with practical experience to deliver a solution that’s exactly right for you and your business. • Assign consultant • Establish deadlines and requirements • Determine approach Phase 2 – configure & install The system is configured to match your required business processes. Depending on the functionality you choose.com .Simply. consulting | software | solutions www. Phase 4 – support Ways to ensure you continue to gain a return on your HR investment. For example. Implementation Having chosen a vendor and signed that all-important contract. With Access. The expertise we’ve gained gives us an unbeatable ability to accurately assess your needs and deliver maximum impact with ease and confidence.g. . we provide a software solution that grows with you. p23 Request a demo By now. Our modular software covers a complete range of business. you should have a good idea about which vendors to shortlist.uk. the best suppliers will recreate these scenarios so that you get a real feel for how it’ll work in real life.theaccessgroup. a web-based. • On-site user training • Supply support documents & workbooks • Go live You can rely on us to provide you with a solution that’s simple. Human Resources. Issue 64. a good vendor will talk you through what’s right for you. About us Access will give you the advice. financial and administration processes and can be flexed to give you the precise view of your business that you need at any time.co. please contact Matt Newman on 0845 345 3300 or keep up-to-date by following Access on twitter: www. D. As both a business-focused consultancy and a specialist software developer. We have over fifteen years’ experience of developing software here in the UK and our regional consultants have tailored and implemented this software all over the UK and in Ireland. newsletters 4. as well as right for today.twitter.selecthr. you can be sure you’ve got the clarity you need to reach your business goals. We hope you have found this guide of use. For further details on Access. References 1 Spellman. You can find out more about our HR and payroll solutions at www. Both have their pros and cons. a good vendor will be able to scale this up or down according to the size and scale of your project. Because your business will constantly evolve. While software is obviously a vital tool for your business. Our supportive consultants combine their first-class software expertise with in-depth industry knowledge to constantly improve and simplify your business processes so that your solution delivers maximum value and a continual return on investment. 16 February 2010.
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
We've moved you to where you read on your other device.
Get the full title to continue reading from where you left off, or restart the preview.