What is HR automation?
We love what we do. But, let’s be honest: Human Resources can get repetitive at times. And if you repeat the same task over and over again, losing resources on it, then the time may have come to automate it.
Think of this in terms of some of the topics we’ve already covered: With Applicant Tracking Systems, for example, you can automate a big portion of the hiring system by automatically posting job listings, screening applicants, and even conducting interviews – all tasks that you would have otherwise spent days, if not weeks, on.
HR Automation refers to this practice of automating repetitive tasks such as hiring, onboarding, payroll and benefits, and more. And, according to research, it’s been growing steadily, having increased 599% between 2020 and 2022. So it’s safe to say that HR automation is here to stay.
Why is HR automation beneficial?
It’s efficient in that it saves you money, time, and resources. A lot of automated HR tasks work on a single program or database, which means that after they have been set up, they require only the cost of admin and the minimum workforce required to keep running it.
It’s objective because it makes decisions based on data, not on human opinions. With HR automation, it becomes easier to analyse what’s working and what’s not, just as it becomes easier to track employee experience and practice effectiveness.
It reduces waste, simply because it reduces the amount of paper that would be required for employees to perform these tasks. Or, in other words, it digitises everything.
It’s secure because digitised information flow can be kept it in encrypted databases.
It improves employee experience because HR staff not drowning in administrative task can then focus more of their time on potential candidates and employees. What’s more, candidates and employees can track their progress or even other information such as pay, benefits, and leave on automated databases, creating a more self-sufficient experience not relying solely on HR teams.
What processes can be automated?
Here are just a few tasks you might want to consider automating:
Recruitment including job posting, candidate screening, background checks, interview scheduling, and progress tracking
Onboarding including document signing, training and assessments, meeting scheduling, and progress tracking
Offboarding including document signing, feedback forms, exit interview scheduling, final paychecks, removal from company email and database, password resetting
Payroll and benefits including timesheets, paychecks, pay changes, tax calculations, benefits eligibility and benefits enrollments
Work eligibility such as document checks, visa checks
Employee leave and absence including leave requests and approvals, doctors notes, annual leave data, manager notes, and necessary payroll calculations
Email reminders including just about anything, sent out either collectively or individually
Training and development including access to online programs and lessons, progress tracking, and skill management
Performance management including progress tracking and measuring against business objectives, objective scoring, meeting scheduling, termination, bonus allocation
Expense claims including bill submission, manager notifications, manager approvals
Will we all lose our jobs to HR automation?
This, most likely, is a no. HR automation only targets jobs that are repetitive and low-efficiency. But what they do in exchange is highlight the human component of HR – you know, what we talk about when we talk about loving our jobs.
By automating the more repetitive and less complex tasks, HR automation saves time for HR staff to focus on building relationships with employees and with the company. Plus, the automated software still needs someone to oversee it. Plus, the data still needs interpreting. So what is happening, in reality, is that you will spend less time on copy-and-pasting and more time on having conversations. Less admin, more real life. It’s a win-win.
What are some important aspects to have in automation software?
We’re glad you’re thinking of automating some HR processes, and this is a great question. When making sure whether an HR automation software is a good fit for your company ethos, pay attention to some key aspects such as:
- Accessibility on multiple screens such as laptop, phone, and tablet.
- Ability to generate and send automatic reminders
- User-friendly dashboards
- A sufficient backup system
- Strong security system
- Visibility and tracking for audit purposes
- Automatic data integration
- Personalised dashboards and workflows
While these are key components that all HR automation tools should have, what matters the most is ultimately compatibility with the business. Some automated systems might work better for startups, for example, while others might be more in-tune with the needs of larger corporations. Similarly, while high-cost and high-performing tools might not be the best fit for some companies, they might be perfect for others.
It’s also important to keep in mind that a single HR automated system might not be sufficient in meeting all needs that your HR department might have. Many companies use anywhere between 5-10 automated tools, and the ease with which these can be integrated is a key point to consider.
When setting up HR automation practices, consider working with companies like Peoplise to help you decide on those most compatible to your business and to set them up to company standards. After all, what’s the point in automation if you’re just going to end up spending even more time and effort in figuring the system out and getting it to run?
With tons of increase in HR automation in the recent years, and even more expected to come, it’s best to hop on the bandwagon now!