Tempo Blog
August 19, 2019 by Sophie Brockbank

Weekly News Update

Goodbye to HR tech, hello recruitment consumerisation, personneltoday

With technology transforming the way we attract, engage and inspire potential hires, Adam Shay explains why keeping up with the latest trends in HR tech is outdated thinking.

Fifty-two HR tech trends for 2020. Five HR trends today that shape tomorrow. Tech Trends from yesterday we’re still using now in HR. The next big thing in HR Tech after the last big thing in HR Tech… you get the idea.

The current market is riddled with articles, insights and “thought leadership” that are enough to make your head spin. It’s happening for good reason, that’s the world today. But when it comes to recruitment, I think the sentiment is all wrong.

With the rapid adoption of all things tech disrupting our daily lives in weird and wonderful ways, HR tech undoubtedly has its place. HR managers are responsible for so many different processes within an organisation. It’s no surprise that there’s a growing market for tech that automates processes, schedules emails and texts interview reminders – taking the pressure off teams and leaving more time to spend on meaningful tasks.

But the market is moving beyond that. It used to be that we waited for tech companies to invent things, then we figured out how to use them and bought them. Now, HR professionals themselves are becoming the disruptors. The era of the candidate experience is here. And they think like consumers.

It’s not difficult to see why. Today we live in a world where everything we want is at our fingertips. We can track the toppings as they’re placed on our pizza, take a virtual tour of our hotel rooms and ask robots to turn up our heating. Technology has given us the power, not only to purchase products and services, it has enabled us to become more savvy, informed and educated, all on our own terms. Why should the candidate experience be any different?

Think about it, people don’t know if they’re engaging with your consumer or employer brand. To them, it’s one whole same thing. In an ideal world, a company’s employer and consumer brand should offer a frictionless experience between the two.

Every interaction with your brand either builds or destroys perceptions. Everything you do that makes your business visible to the public is going to affect your image, from the tech you use on your careers website, to the speed of your selection processes. So there needs to be a shift in mentality when it comes to experimenting and exploring with technology in HR.

A recent whitepaper by Resource Solutions, Candidate Expectations in the Experience Economy, reveals the gap between candidate expectations and the reality of what employers and talent acquisition teams are delivering.

It tells us that chatbots like Mya are taking the candidate experience to whole new levels of engagement. Brands like Winter Circle are beginning to build talent pools that operate like members-only clubs. And there are algorithms from companies like Workday that can determine which candidates are most likely to change jobs.

The point is, it doesn’t need to have the label “HR tech” to form part of your HR tech strategy.

Take Glassdoor for instance, the peer-to-peer website for honest insights into a company by employees past and present. A study I conducted back in 2016, Talent trusts Glassdoor, and here’s why showed that even then, Glassdoor was the second most trusted source of finding a job, after friends and family.

Glassdoor’s own research today says that it has 64 million monthly users and of those, 88% of visitors go on to use the site to apply for a job. Yet a staggering 86% of global companies surveyed in the Resource Solutions report are not integrating Glassdoor reviews into their recruitment communications. Why not? It’s madness.

Being an actively engaged employer on Glassdoor is a quick win that’ll give you tremendous insight into everything from how your salaries compare to your competitors, to improvements needed in your culture.

Reaching outside of your comfort zone goes both ways, with HR tech becoming attractive to the biggest players on the market such as Facebook and Google. People analytics is a massive trend and it’s no surprise that these giants are using their vast amounts of data to install nap rooms, or ramp up LGBTQ initiatives to make their people happier at work. They’re opening their eyes to how the power of the consumer mind-set can make them better employers. We should too.

I think that HR teams that begin to see their roles as creating an employment experience, rather than structuring employment, will be on the leading edge of consumerisation of the workplace. The result will be past, present, and future employees who have the same experience and perception of a company as its customers do

But no amount of new HR tech will help if the people in charge won’t change.

Being an actively engaged employer on Glassdoor is a quick win that’ll give you tremendous insight into everything from how your salaries compare to your competitors, to improvements needed in your culture.

HR Tech landscape is a little bit out of control: Josh Bersin, peoplematters

With too many solutions available in the market, it's time for vendors to rethink their solutions as 'experiences' that integrate into Office 365, Teams, Slack and other tools- and operate flawlessly, says Josh Bersin.

You saw a massive shift from Automation to Productivity in 2018. How have things changed so far in 2019?

This trend is accelerating. Not only is productivity the theme, but simplicity. People are just too distracted and busy with their phones, emails, and messages – so we need HR tools that operate “in the flow of work.” Vendors have to rethink their solutions as “experiences” that integrate into Office 365, Teams, Slack and other tools – and operate flawlessly. We can’t send people to any more “destination apps” unless they are really fun, enjoyable, and valuable to use.

How do you see the current landscape of HR tech globally? And what lessons can CHRO and people manager learn from the current level of adoption of HR tech?

The HR Tech landscape is a little bit out of control. After 11 years of economic growth, VCs have funded many incredible startups causing a lot of “cognitive overload” among buyers. Even as an expert I have a hard time keeping up with all the tools.

I’m not saying any of these systems aren’t great, but I know that CHROs are tired of getting emails and sales calls from vendors, and they want to buy tools that are proven and integrated into the ecosystem they already have.

Companies that have digital teams can set up sandboxes and evaluation and architecture groups to help – but most companies don’t have time for this so I advise vendors to slow down and make sure you have sustainable solutions before you blast out all your sales and marketing and expect CHROs to listen.

Among the new-gen technologies (AI, ML, RPA, blockchain), which one are you most excited to use and why? Share examples of use cases.

Clearly ML and AI are way ahead of everything else because these technologies are now embedded into everything. We have AI-based assessment, selection, salary advice, learning, career management, and management. Leaders can now get AI-based tools to help them with coaching and it will go on and on. I expect us to come to work with “recommendations and nudges” every day, just like we get “recommended alerts” on news, stocks, and wellbeing tips.

Do you think HR will see a new level of data competency in 2019 with the rapid adoption of people analytics that help people managers make decisions about their workforce?

Yes. This has already happened. Our newest People Analytics Excellence course in the Josh Bersin Academy is under great demand (coming in Q4) and most HR leaders tell me they no longer want to hire HR people who don’t know some statistics and have data fluency. But not everyone is an analyst; people need to know how to interpret data, tell stories from data, and understand when the data is misleading. There is a lot to learn here – but as I wrote years ago –the “datafication” of HR has arrived.

What are exciting new innovations to look forward to in the context of HR and new-gen technologies?

I think chatbots, employee experience platforms, and integration with MS Teams are big. These are technologies that now exist and work today and they didn’t even exist two years ago. We all have to select the right tools in these areas. Employee self-service has become employee “listening and response” and platforms like employee engagement have become “action platforms” that deliver recommendations to managers. All these are new ideas going into production this year.

Employee experience seems to be one of the focus areas for HR today. How can HR leaders ensure a seamless employee experience and help them give their best in terms of productivity and efficiency?

This is the biggest topic in HR at the moment. I think it requires an employee experience leader and a cross-functional team that looks at the most unproductive problematic areas in your company. Right now it’s a consulting process but over time we’ll find better tools to instrument, design, and continuously improve employee experiences. Just as companies monitor customer experiences, we will do the same for employees.

How can technology help HR to understand the needs of employees in a gig economy?

This is a growing area with not enough tools. My latest research shows that only 12 percent of companies even know what gig workers they have and what they’re working on. Some of the core ERP vendors are building solutions here (many are building tools for internal marketplaces) but the vendor market is still lacking.

What are your top tips to HR leaders trying to build a business case for innovation and use of technology in the HR function?

I am very pragmatic here. I believe you have to build a solid system of record and then experiment and innovate in all these areas, with a plan to pilot different tools and throw some away if they don’t work. Just as marketeers have many tools to reach and communicate with consumers, we now need many tools to reach and communicate with employees. It’s not a time to sit back and wait – there are many ready solutions now. You just have to pilot and experiment to find the right ones for your particular company.

HR professionals must embrace technology to improve processes, HRNews

Research by employee engagement company, Reward Gateway earlier this year found that HR professionals are spending 366.6 hours a year manually checking, responding to and keeping up with multiple HR applications.

The research highlighted that integrating new HR tools into current workplace technology is a key priority for 89% of HR professionals, as many struggle with processes that could be automated.

One of the challenges though is that there’s a lack of unification and HR professionals can be forced to access multiple systems, with a quarter of companies saying they use eight or more different systems and apps every day for work.

It doesn’t have to be this complicated and digital technology is available that can simplify processes in one system and transform how HR teams work.

HR technology has the power to radically change how HR departments are run, automating key processes, improving efficiencies, reducing hours spent on administration and better engaging people in the business. However many companies are lagging behind when it comes to adopting technology.

We still come across companies that are managing employee absence and holiday leave using bits of paper. This just isn’t efficient and can be a real headache for the HR team to keep on top of, not to mention costly for the business with wasted hours spent doing things manually or a rising sick leave bill.

This is where absence management technology can help. This software enables HR teams to track sickness absence accurately and uncover the root causes, so companies can better support their workers. It also records holiday leave and other absence,helping to ensure there are no clashes and that the workplace is fully staffed at all times.“

Deloitte’s Global Human Capital Trends 2019 report also highlights that introducing faster and simpler HR tech is a key trend for this year; however it pointed out that digital HR still has some major work ahead. Their research found that just 5 percent of respondents believed their HR technology was doing an excellent job meeting full-time workers’ needs.

Technology is out there but HR professionals need to find the right system for their workplace.We offer a suite of cloud-based HR software for example that can help companies improve their HR management, so they no longer need to struggle with mundane,manual processes that are time consuming and could be automated.

We digitalise every aspect of HR through this one system – from recording employee information and running HR reports, managing sickness and absence and return to work processes,planning staff holidays, conducting appraisals and performance management and managing training records.

The system is module based too, so companies can pick and choose the modules they want and only pay for the tools they need, when they need them. HR managers need to catch up with the digital revolution and start taking advantage of the tools available to make their jobs easier, more efficient and spend less time doing things manually.

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