Picking The Best HRIS Software For Your Company
No matter what the organization, there is no application as important as that of the Human Resources Information System, or HRIS. Consider an organization to be valued as a measure of its workers – what could be more integral to the organization’s success than that system which enables skillful management of the very human resource itself?
An HRIS put to effective use is essentially the hub through which all corporate information flows, driving the wheels of the organization to turn smoothly and with efficiency.
Existing HR systems allow for a wide range of data management and dispersal at every level of the corporate hierarchy, comprehensively organizing past, present, and projected information on human resource intelligence, communication and statistics. Despite these obvious benefits, however, HRIS applications are still stigmatized as failing to yield the promised results of unified processes and diminished administration. This, of course, begs the proverbial question: why?
Choosing the right HRIS for you
A chief cause for ineffectual HRIS is a failure on the organization’s part to choose the system which genuinely best fits its individual needs. While it is important for the Information Technology and Finance departments to be involved in the selection process, often these branches are granted too much authority in making a decision which should ultimately belong to Human Resources alone! Ask yourself this: would you let HR off the leash to determine your company’s new financial management system, or pick which servers to purchase for IT? Likewise, the process of settling on a human resource information system should be left to the experts in that field.
The needs of every organization are unique and specific, and a thorough understanding of those needs is paramount in choosing the HRIS which will work best for you. In order to optimize the benefits that an HRIS has to offer, you must be able to identify exactly what services your clients are demanding, red-flag unnecessary or wasteful operations, and hone in on areas that have potential for improvement and growth.
Selecting an HRIS application
When looking to purchase a new HR system, it is important that you complete a thorough analysis of your organization and assemble a business case which will adequately prove to the board that the investment in a new HRIS is worthwhile. Such a business case should include an assessment of both tangible and intangible benefits. While cost reduction statistics still remain the most persuasive factor, guarantees of improved security and efficiency, along with the ability to measure and track individual capabilities, are provoking interest and an ever-increasing demand.
The task of actually choosing a winning HRIS for your organization can seem daunting, but with proper research and consideration it is entirely achievable. Bearing in mind the work which will be required to implement a new HR information system, seek out applications which are attractive, engaging, and clear-cut to use while still remaining functionally-rich and flexible enough to adapt as your company grows. Powerful systems such as SAP and Oracle have recently been very popular, but there are plenty of more timely and inexpensive alternatives which have wonderful things to offer.
Make use of an assortment of resources in order to become fully informed on the different HRIS which are available. Some websites allow you to sort through and contrast HR applications according to varying needs and criteria. Research other people’s experiences with various systems; this will expose you to not only the pros but also the cons which, of course, you will never learn directly from the HRIS suppliers. Vendors are still useful, however – you just need to know what to ask. Pose a number of specific questions regarding how their HRIS would solve your organization’s unique problems, or even present the supplier with a set of artificial data to simulate one of your more pressing issues and request that the vendor demonstrate a solution. What other clients do they serve whose companies are similar in size and type to yours? Are the HR system reports standard and limited, or do they provide performance data which is easy to retrieve, manipulate, and display? Does the system require complex and extensive training to operate, or is it user-friendly and intuitive?
Implementing your new HRIS
Once you have finally selected the HRIS that is right for your organization, make sure that you go about implementing it in the correct way. Develop a relationship with your vendor; vendors are intimately knowledgeable about their own HRIS product, and can be a priceless wellspring of experience and advice. Also, be practical in your expectations. It takes time to install and establish a new HR application – the system is not going to explode into life overnight. Start by enabling your basic and most crucial procedures, and then systematically add other processes in order of necessity. The most important thing is to follow a steady, directed plan that will ensure you develop your HRIS at a respectable pace without burning out by gunning for too much too fast.In all honesty, an HRIS will never be “complete”. Like Human Resources itself, an effective HR system should be constantly growing and changing to accommodate the demands of your organization. The surest way of optimizing your application’s capabilities is to take complete ownership of your HR information system from the start, fostering its development and thoroughly understanding how best to make it work for you.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Clay C. Scroggin has over fifteen years of experience in the human resource software industry. Clay is currently the President and owner of CompareHRIS.com, a web site dedicated to assisting HR professionals with their search, selection, implementation and use of HR software. CompareHRIS.com offers an extremely comprehensive HRIS selection tool to assist you with your HRIS, HRMS or HR software selection process. Make sure to download CompareHRIS.com’s free HR and Payroll Software Buyer’s Guide.