How Technology is Changing the Human Resources Industry
In 2019, we will have access to more technology and programs than ever before. Each year new systems get released to help streamline our human resources systems and make us even more efficient at our jobs. While digital scheduling systems have been around for quite some time and have drastically improved our ability to manage many employees’ schedules, it can be argued that not every aspect of Human Resources should be digitized. With this renewed emphasis on technology in 2019, are we at risk of losing the ‘human’ in Human Resources?Artificial Intelligence and digital systems are changing our current roles and responsibilities within the workplace. Nowadays there seems to be a system for everything including, but not limited to, applicant tracking, scheduling, learning, performance and talent management and even conducting interviews. Technology has become so reliable that some employers don’t even feel the need to conduct the initial stage of an interview anymore. It is becoming common practice that many organizations ask prospective employees to submit a video, rather than coming into the workplace to have a traditional interview. This then gives the prospective employer the luxury of watching the video as many times as they would like to analyze the candidate’s performance. While this seems like an increased analytical approach, are organizations are risking the ability to use intuition and feeling usually gained by having a face-to-face interview?
With more and more companies focusing on employee engagement and building great work cultures, it can be very risky not to get a good sense of how a new employee would fit in within your existing culture and workforce. In contrast, there can also be some benefit to digital interviews when prospective employees live far away and are looking to relocate. Even so, live digital interviews via a video chat system, like Skype, could potentially be more insightful than pre-recorded and submitted messages.
One of the biggest ways that technology is increasing our efficiency in the Human Resources department is through the use of online or digital training models. Now you can ensure that each and every employee is receiving the same great standard of training without having to go through long periods of time doing ‘train the trainers’ for those who are in charge of distributing the training! In spite of an increased time investment of setting up a training program, the benefits reaped could be enormous when employees can access training whenever it suits them and at a pace they are most comfortable with for their learning styles.
Performance management systems are also gaining great traction from digitization. Gone are the days of stacks and stacks of paper files for each and every employee. This can be extremely beneficial when your staff are globally distributed. Now with digital performance management systems you can access employee reviews faster and easier than ever before. This also helps human resources see when comments were given in the past about a specific area that an employee needed to improve upon, and can help to gain better perspective on how the employee is performing within the organization over a longer period of time.
As it can be seen, there are many other benefits to digitization of the Human Resources department. Available systems can make routine paperwork like payroll, benefits and scheduling more efficient and error-free. Training and performance management systems can also be quite helpful when they are incorporated with technology to help the newest members of the workforce learn what to expect straight away. When we are not so bogged down with these routine tasks it frees up the Human Resources department to really improve upon the culture and employee engagement within an organization. However, organizations must be careful that this trend towards using technology for everything just to make the processes fast can also have a downside when we lose face-to-face human interaction in the workplace.