Technology & Innovation

How to choose an HR system: The ultimate guide for finance leaders

Do you know what to look for in an HR and People system? Here’s everything you need to know when it comes to cloud HR.

Finance leaders, how often do you think about your HR and People system?

Cast your mind back to the start of the pandemic.

Did you consider how your HR technology performed for your company? Did it help you manage the switch to remote working fluidly?

Were your systems flexible and robust enough to manage the changing expectations of your employees?

In this article we cover tips to help you choose the right HR system for your organisation.

Here’s what we cover:

What finance leaders need to know about the changing role of HR

4 things for finance leaders to look for in an HR system

1. Actionable insights

2. Increased productivity

3. HR compliance

4. Total cost of ownership

Making the right HR tech decision takes a team

There wasn’t a single role that didn’t have to pivot, adapt and change during the pandemic – but no one experienced the challenges quite like HR and People teams did.

In our recent research, 72% of HR leaders told us the pandemic helped them demonstrate their value and increased understanding of HR’s role. They helped employees transition to remote working while also helping leaders manage productivity across their remote teams.

They adapted quickly to a whole new world of onboarding and offboarding, managing company culture and supporting employee wellbeing.

Even so, many HR teams had to handle these new responsibilities on legacy, outdated systems.

That’s why almost two-thirds of HR leaders (63%) told us they had experienced limitations with their current HR systems, and that they were ‘not fit for the future’.

The future, in this case, being the one in which 74% of professionals expect remote working to become the norm.

Cloud HR is vital for organisations that manage a remote workforce, want to create great employee experience that engage and delight top talent, and need greater workforce visibility to drive business decision-making.

We know HR systems are an investment but a worthwhile one for the right system.

As a finance leader, it falls upon you to make the best investment decisions for your organisation, including technology.

However, if you’re looking for a new system, it’s probably been a while since you looked for one. Technology has changed. Employee and HR needs have changed – and it’s likely yours have too.

So, to help you wrap your head around the fast-changing world of HR tech, we’ve put together a few tips. Check out: How to choose an HR system: the ultimate guide. In the meantime, here’s the highlights.

55% of C-suite executives say finance leaders are heavily involved in the buying process of HR software. As a finance leader, the onus will fall on you to find a solution that provides the most effective system for the lowest cost – but that’s not all.

To really feel the full benefit of an HR system, it needs to satisfy your finance team’s growing thirst for information across the whole company, make informed financial decisions and react to changing circumstances as and when they’re happening.

Here’s four things to look for in an HR and People system.

Wouldn’t it be a real game-changer if you could drill down into your HR and People data at a touch of a button?

At a time when organisations are having to evolve to meet the changing needs of remote and flexible working, the ability to quickly access and interpret data is critical to finance teams.

And it’s something that should be high up on your agenda for your new HR system.

With analysing this data, you can find out how productive your employees are and how they’re adapting to the changes, so your HR team knows what their next steps need to be.

By switching to a cloud-based HR and People system, finance teams can spot trends before they happen and keep an eye on flight risks and churn, cost-to-value ratios of new hires and productivity statistics.

The right cloud HR system can give finance leaders a clear, global and up-to-the-minute view of your workforce, enabling faster decision-making both for you and your HR and People team.

By using the right system, your HR team can reduce the time spent on admin. That’ll give them more time to focus on business-critical objectives such as strategy and communication.

How is that possible? Simple – automation.

Your HR team benefits, and so does the rest of your workforce too. By increasing the range of tasks that can be automated and simplifying processes, a robust cloud-based HR system should help to improve productivity across your entire organisation.

It means less time on paperwork, process and admin – and more time on the things that matter, both for your HR team and workforce alike.

Self-service is key to this. From booking annual leave to accessing company policy documents, self-service portals give any employee in your entire organisation direct control over their HR needs.

With laws and regulations around the world constantly changing, many global organisations find themselves with a constant headache, rewriting policies to ensure the company is compliant with employment labour and tax rules.

As a finance leader, you probably know this better than anyone.

It’s reassuring to know, then, that a global HR system could make your life much easier by standardising and consolidating HR and People data into a single place.

This will allow your finance team to manage everything with a single global overview, while giving you the flexibility to allow for local variations in legislation and regulation.

Furthermore, a cloud-based HR and People system can seamlessly integrate with your third-party payroll software, taking the complexities out of pay and making life easier for your payroll department too.

Let’s say you find an HR solution that can do all the above – what would be the point in investing in it if the potential cost savings were outweighed by the total cost of ownership?

Therein lies the final challenge for finance leaders: finding a solution that not only works for you but also offers great value for money.

Some suppliers will charge you extra for things such as implementation and e-learning, or limit your access to your customer success manager.

This is what we mean by the total cost of ownership. It’s where you’ll want to do some proper number crunching so you really know what the investment looks like and whether you’ll get the return you’re looking for.

Investing in an HR solution is a huge decision for any business and you and HR, IT and the business leader will likely need to work together to make the right decision.

While you’ll need to be savvy about what you need for an HR system to meet your needs from a financial perspective, you’ll want to make sure this aligns with the needs of the other main stakeholders too – the HR, IT and business leaders – so you find the right tech for your entire organisation.

We find many HR leaders will drive the process for choosing new HR software – but they can’t get buy-in without finance, the CEO and other business leaders.

This is where you come in – make sure you know what you want in a system, and what to look for when evaluating and comparing vendors.

How to choose an HR system: The ultimate guide for finance leaders

Discover how to select the perfect HR solution to meet your business needs, so you can deliver great employee experiences.

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