Ongoing HR digitalization: causes and implications
Digital technologies are growing in importance in the ongoing struggle to attract and harness the top talent. Continuous change occuring in the last decades has lately gained the critical mass and is entering an exponential stage these last several years. Both the workforce and the workplace are undergoing drastic changes powered by distance-eliminating technologies and increasing pervasiveness of the alternative working arrangements.
While digital technologies are fundamental to this change, they are also reshaping the way HR departments operate in a fundamental way, with automation and predictive artificial intelligence algorithms coming in to help human resources assess and process vast amounts of data and automating the mundane tasks, effectively achieving the next step in the evolution of hr – a partnership between the human and the machine in which each party compensates for other’s weaknesses.
Change is an imperative to the modern business climate. Companies must stay agile and ready to adapt at a moment’s notice to strive in the current environment. That involves utilizing new technologies – especially the disruptive “exponential” ones with scalable impact – to make use of the increasing massive volumes of data being created. Gained insights restructure the workflows of entire companies, and the digital transformation HR departments achieve is often one of the most drastic changes.
Most recently, an unprecedented global pandemic has accelerated this transformation, including a massive, unparalleled shift in where and how work gets done.
Yet, at the forefront of all these changes, it’s people who are making tech, the people who are charged with implementing it, and the people who end up being directly or indirectly influenced. And people are complicated. With shrinking face-to-face human contact, HR departments face new challenges of building engagement with remote workforce, establishing trust, loyalty, and brand reputation.
The technological tools that are enabling HR digitalization are also growing in complexity and often outside assistance is required to choose and configure the right tools for the unique circumstances of your company.
Our client, Wahler Human Resources, provides HR consulting services to small and medium enterprises and helps them achieve the aforementioned changes with the best tools for the job, unique circumstances of the company and its goals considered. The classic way to do HR tool consulting is cost and time intensive. It involves a lot of man-hours of professionals with steep hourly rates, and ongoing cooperation from the сlient and thus usually can’t be afforded by SMBs. Wahler needed a way to offer Consulting services to customers who aren’t willing or able to pay as much.
With a goal of expanding their target audience and bringing the digitalization of hr processes to smaller companies, Wahler contacted us to transform their service offering into a software product with the same core logic.
Instead of 2-6 weeks, it
day to achieve the business outcome
Platform allows for up to
reduced consulting costs
Determining the business outcomes companies strive for with hr digital transformation
Business leaders unanimously agree that the approach to human resources management must be redefined, with data-centric approaches and AI enhancing decision-making capabilities to deliver engaging candidate and employee experiences, better assess performance, and identify potential leaders as early as possible.
A recent survey of over 500 HR representatives of executive and senior manager levels in the United States, United Kingdom and Germany shows that 87% of them have a strong belief that digital technologies will revolutionize HR in ways yet unseen. At the same time, 75% of respondents deem their IT systems and infrastructure sub-optimal and incapable of achieving HR digital transformation with performance goals and business outcomes they envision. There’s also a strong indication that companies are intending to correct this shortcoming, with most companies planning to increase their IT budgets in the coming years.
Our research indicates that a drastic approach shift to human resources is critical for enterprises wishing to succeed in the 2020s. World’s best companies — the ones outpacing all competition in innovation, market share, and revenue margins —are showing extreme confidence in reinventing HR being one of the foremost priorities in the coming companies. Many HR executives from these companies are already investing in this disruption. If all previous facts were not convincing enough, this in itself speaks volumes to the importance of the matter.
All aspects of HR are being transformed by digital technologies. How companies recruit, pay, engage, retain, review, foster, and train their employees in a decade’s time may well be very different from our current expectations. HR departments that harness the power of digital will gain an edge over their competitors in the hunt for talent, which will translate into a competitive advantage for the entire company.
The benefits are apparent, yet for a company to gain them, several conditions must be met:
- The solution must meet the needs of the company and align with its goals.
- It should have all the necessary functionality, preferably, only this functionality, so as not to pay for the complexity one does not require.
- HR managers must understand how it functions and what benefits it brings, ideally, through an intuitive interface and automated tutorials.
- The cost of the solution must be in line with the benefits it brings.
The outcome of classic HR consulting Wahler does is a list of recommended software tools, cost analysis on them, and technical recommendations for their implementation.
For the solution we were engineering, we put these principles as the core of our design philosophy to create a platform that will cover all the needs of a customer and have the same business outcome as traditional HR consulting.
“ We envisioned that part of our service offering can be transformed and automated, yet did not expect that it could be done so elegantly ”
Founder/CEO bei WAHLER
Distilling complex logic into a simple format
impltech business analysts collaborated with Wahler representatives to analyze their customer data.
Finding common patterns, trends, and regularities has allowed impltech and Wahler to define the key differences which dictate which functionality the company requires and which tools would be the best fit for it.
We proceeded to create an advanced questionnaire that would allow customers to give the answers we need to give them precise recommendations in a most easy and straightforward way.
Our design team went on to create the user flows, wireframes and design prototypes for the platform. We iterated upon them with the representatives of Wahler to find the most user – friendly and straightforward design solutions and created a clickable prototype of the final version. It can be used to conduct product discovery, showcase the idea, conduct customer surveys, test product theories.
The resulting platform allows Wahler to attract customers who don’t have the budget to pay for classic consulting.
There’s little to no consultant involvement in the process, so Wahler HR does not need to invest many resources per client. This means Wahler can scale the concept, attracting as many customers as their marketing department can manage.
Customers complete a questionnaire to discover which product offerings currently on market fit their requirements and goals as an organization best. In the end, they receive product recommendations together with cost analysis and technical implementation guide for each option. There’s also a price calculator that allows users to view how much a product with certain features would cost that can be used to investigate additional functionality clients may be interested in.
The benefits for the customers are fourfold:
- Using the platform is significantly cheaper than doing classic consulting
- Unlike in classic consulting, most steps do not require calls or meetings with the consultant. Users can work on the platform wherever and whenever he/she wants
- The process can be completed significantly faster, in a matter of hours instead of weeks
- The users gain control and a good overview, since they always know exactly where in the process they are, and how much time it would take to complete
After the consulting stage, Wahler was satisfied with the results and decided to proceed and use impltech product development services to create the platform.