HR Automation - Effectiveness Efficiency and Engagement - Part 3

Employee Engagement, Employee Relations, Rewards and Recognition

With automation of major HR Processes, the role of HR Professionals in an organization has changed dramatically. It is no longer transactional, administration or activity based. It has moved more towards Business Partnership. Those HR Professionals who like change, who are quick learner and adaptors, not only managed to survive in this profession but also moved to never before seen levels of an organizational hierarchy and got promoted as CEO’s, Managing Directors and Country Business Heads. On the other hand, those who resisted the change and were slow learners has either moved to other professions like sales, digital marketing, customer services, etc. or they are still working in similar roles in lower salary bands. To remain relevant and successful in HR, when major tasks are getting automated, professionals in this function must develop following competencies –

  1. Leadership Development & Business Continuity – Help the organization in identifying high-potential and high-performing employees; facilitate leadership development programs; coaching leaders and managers to develop competencies required for high impact and high-risk roles, and correcting behaviours or employees that are hindering their growth potential. This role of HR not only requires them to focus on high-potential and high-performing employees but also give attention to low-performing and low-potential employees. Help low-performing and low-potential employees get aligned with business goals and strategies. If they don’t improve as per the requirement then Talent Managers must recommend Leadership Team to eliminate such employees from the system. By doing so, HR Professionals will help the organization in creating a culture of accountability, performance, and rewards. It will also ensure business continuity. 
  2. Inculcating Winning Behaviour among salesperson–Till a few years ago, it was assumed that HR cannot play a significant role is Sales and Marketing. However, now scenarios’ are changing. As Digital and Social Media has begun to take a centre stage in our lives, HR can certainly play an important role in product or service Marketing, Branding, and Positioning. Of course, they must have Business Acumen, and be well versed with organizational offerings. Also, as Behaviour Scientists and Performance Coaches, HR can play a significant role in developing a competitive edge among salesperson of organizations. 
  3. Analytical with reasoning and logic – With process automation in place, HR’s are now sitting on huge data, which can now be analysed and used effectively in taking decisions. Today many organizations are looking for metrics or analytics in HR which are not just related to people but also on processes such as recruitment, retention, compensation, succession planning, benefits, training & development, performance and appraisal and many others.
  4. Effective Communication and Employee Engagement – With several of HR processes getting automated, now HR has plenty of time to get innovative with employee engagement and ensure that every employee of an organization is aware of organizational mission, vision, goals, products, and services. They can also ensure that every employee is able to see the significance of his role in the big picture. HR is now free to play a significant role in preparing an effective communication strategy and plans to address needs to all stakeholders based on the mode of communication preferences of every social group taking into consideration cultural barriers. 

It took me TEN months to complete the project and submit my reports. It was a wonderful experience. While studying their existing HR Processes, I also got a chance to analyse their office administration process, and believe me, those were very tedious, time-consuming and expensive. The organization could have saved millions of dollars per year by streamlining those processes. Having understood their existing processes, growth plans and expectations from HR, it was discovered that there is no single software that can address every requirement of this organization. Therefore, I recommended them - Workday or Ceridian (Dayforce HCM) for addressing their Talent Administration needs and Cornerstone OnDemand or Ascentis for their requirement of Talent Management in multiple locations.   

I am a strong believer of a fact that automation of HR processes is not a threat to HR Professionals working in this profession. Instead, it allows them to free up their time and make a significant contribution in areas where it matters. In coming years, I foresee organizations coming up with more innovative tools and software’s to address challenges of Talent Acquisition, Performance Management, and Talent Development. There is a huge scope for further automating HR processes. With automation, the role of HR will evolve further and it will get closely aligned with Business Strategy, Profitability, and Customers.  

In a case of any queries, please contact the author.

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