HR Tech Needs a Downsizing

April 25, 2012 at 6:29 am Leave a comment

It may sound like a cliché, but it’s true. The pace of technology and global competition is challenging business leaders to run their businesses effectively and that includes workforce development. A recent report from Baker Tilly International lists the following points:

• Businesses and workforces are on two independent and highly dynamic trajectories.
• The substantial number of HR technology options isn’t helping companies solve the disconnect. Firms have too many diverse and disconnected HR systems. That makes it difficult to obtain the anticipated value from these technologies.
• A new evolutionary phase is hitting HR. It requires full, tightly integrated talent management programs to gain visibility with global talent pools.

HR can be at the forefront of helping their organizations respond to the quickly changing workforce, but it has to re-evaluate its systems to ensure they are helping the cause, rather than hindering it.

Baker Tilly sees a downsizing of HR systems to reduce, standardize and fully integrate the technology within their environment. HR systems will go through a consolidation and integration phase in order to drive value in a dynamic business climate.

A few comments from industry experts on the evolution in HR technology:

Ann Blakely, senior manager of Human Capital Services at Baker Tilly, said, “When I walk around Human Resource technology shows with hundreds of unique software vendors providing one to a dozen individual products, I see a significant gap developing. I’m concerned about companies that buy eight to 10 of these disparate products that don’t talk to each other. How will these employers be competitive in today’s work environment? Integration is a tricky word. Many clients consider an environment that is fraught with dual entry and manual data feeds as integrated. When we say integration, we mean products that share a common development platform, user interface, database design, etc. We are not talking about loosely interfaced solutions when we talk about integration.”

Dr. Katherine Jones, director and principal analyst, HCM Technology, Bersin & Associates also weighs in on this topic. “Our research shows that HR systems buyers want integrated talent platforms. In fact, more than one-third of all buyers are willing to give up functional features for the benefits of an integrated platform. Organizations absolutely need better integration and analytic tools to optimize their workforce, especially in industries going through significant transformations. The resulting integrated platform can help them identify patterns of high-performance, high-potential and workforce gaps and risks.”

The Baker Tilly report concludes that because of disconnected HR technology platforms, organizations know very little about their global workforce. Important facts they want to acquire may be costly to generate and possibly even wrong.

Are your HR systems lean and mean or bloated and in need of trimming? What will it take to integrate HR systems more fully?

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Entry filed under: HR Management, HR technology, Management, Uncategorized. Tags: , , , .

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