HR Technology: The Future Is Here

HR must capitalize on new and improved tech tools to drive organizational outcomes.

By Henry G. Jackson Oct 1, 2015
Thanks to mobile technology, we can now find anything we want, anytime, anywhere. In fact, Google has reported that “near me” searches—queries that use mapping technology to help us quickly locate our closest post offices, restaurants, shops and more—are 34 times more popular than they were in 2011. A review of the billions of these searches revealed an interesting finding with particular implications for HR: More people are searching for “jobs near me.”Today, even finding a job must be a simple search-and-click away.This poses a tremendous opportunity for HR to connect with talent. Innovations in recruiting through social media platforms have also made it easier to find and hire great people. Most important, I believe that, as HR fully embraces these and other technological tools at our disposal, we will free ourselves up to focus on the strategy of our teams and organizations.Fortunately, HR technology is advancing us in this direction. No longer a back-office system used to house employee records, the next generation of HR technology delivers human capital solutions that impact the bottom line, from talent acquisition to employee engagement to corporate learning. Our cover story this month, “7 Reasons to Love Your Applicant Tracking System,” takes on this most venerable of systems in the HR tech world.The evolution of HR through technological strides is likely to continue. In a special HR Magazine feature earlier this year, “What’s in Store for HR in 2015,” experts predicted that more HR professionals will leverage new HR technology. And with the average human resource management system nearly five years old, many organizations are in the market for innovative technology-based solutions that integrate with or replace existing HR management systems, make data-based talent recommendations, and improve service delivery to employees.According to a Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) Foundation report, human resource management is increasingly more tech-based because of the business need to streamline processes, reduce administrative and compliance costs, provide real-time metrics, and more. Research has also shown that HR technology, done right, provides a clear competitive advantage in business.We must capitalize on new and improved tech tools to drive organizational outcomes. This is why the SHRM Body of Competency and Knowledge and competency-based certifications reflect technological skills and proficiency with “big data,” which are critical for HR professionals in business today. In addition, the SHRM Foundation Executive Briefing, Leveraging HR Technology for Competitive Advantage, is a step-by-step guide to making HR technology work for organizations.We have anticipated for many years how HR technology would change the HR landscape. That future is here. At SHRM, we feel a responsibility to equip HR professionals for the exciting and uncharted territory ahead. Look for more going forward.

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