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Putting the ‘Human’ back into Human Resources

Business functions are applying new technologies to become more agile, responsive, and customer-centric. Marketing and sales functions are using new platforms, content, and channels to better target their customers. Finance teams are using automation to reduce closing times and predictive analytics to fine tune budgeting and forecasting.

Many of the technologies designed for HR functions address employee productivity and engagement; but don’t help HR and Management to approach workforce planning strategically.

Employees at the Heart of the Organisation

The rapidly evolving business environment and the need to evolve a multi-generational workforce through hiring, engagement, and re-skilling requires HR practitioners to be more strategic. While Human Resource practitioners strive to be more strategic and add value to the business, they are increasingly burdened with administrative tasks due to increased compliance requirements and shrinking manpower.

Over the past year, working with our partners in the forward-thinking Singapore Public Service and private enterprise we have automated processes across the HR value chain which have freed capacity for HR practitioners and managers, and improved the employee experience. Some of the processes we have automated have included employee on-boarding, employee offboarding, performance board preparation, payroll audit, notification of appointment, and maternity/paternity/child-care leave submissions.

Through the automation of these processes learned there is a significant administrative burden on our HR people and Managers. And, if we remove this burden we can enable them to spend more time with their people and address more strategic people priorities.

When we automated employee onboarding we streamlined the process so it required minimal intervention from HR, Corporate Services, and IT. It also resulted in an improved employee onboarding experience; from ‘day one’ new starters would have everything they need to be effective in their job. HR and Managers could spend time with the new starter making sure they were settled in rather than trying to track down their laptop or security pass.

We also saw a similar change with the automation of offboarding. While automating the offboarding process reduced the risk profile for the organisation it also made the process much simpler for the leaver, and allowed HR to spend more time on exit interviews and analysing attrition data.

We have started looking to fill the gaps with HR solutions such as Workday and SuccessFactors, to build products out the box that can further increase HR productivity and employee satisfaction. The next challenge is to determine how to use the time saved from automation to deliver against strategic HR priorities, and automation is giving HR people the headroom to do that thinking.

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