Digital transformation is a phrase that has been tossed around pretty liberally over the past few years, often in ways that seem overly technical. For most organizations, it can be simpler to think of it as using technology to increase efficiency by automating manual processes.
From a human resources perspective, a great practical application of digital transformation is the use of self-service intranet portals that allow employees to take care of many tasks that would otherwise require the assistance of HR staff.
In the typical HR department, significant resources are devoted to answering questions from employees about 401k plans, insurance coverage, vacation accrual, holiday schedules and more. One Ernst & Young study concludes that HR employees spend more than 90 percent of their time on such repetitive tasks. In a separate study, Ernst & Young calculated some eye=popping costs for these manual processes. The firm concludes that every manual HR task, including simple data entry, costs an average of $4.39 to complete.
An HR intranet with self-service functionality creates a user-friendly digital work space where employees can easily access company policies, staff directories, benefits and payroll information, training materials, job descriptions, news, calendars and more. Through increased automation and reduced HR intervention, a self-service portal can reduce costs and increase the efficiency of a number of common HR processes, including:
Recruiting. The portal can serve as a central location for posting job openings and can be linked to popular job boards so that internal candidates can easily apply.
Onboarding and training new employees. An HR portal reduces the burden on HR staff to physically manage the completion of new-hire paperwork. Automated reminders help ensure the employee completes the processes promptly. Videos and FAQs can provide answers to policy and procedural questions and simplify training for specific job functions.
Time and attendance. Allowing employees to enter time-and-attendance information and access their schedules and payroll information improves accuracy and helps ensure compliance with labor laws and company policy. A self-service portal can also simplify leave requests.
Performance reviews. The portal can generate automatic reminders to employees and managers to complete evaluation forms. Management dashboards enable HR to track the progress of reviews and request additional information.
Self-service functions not only improve HR functions, but they can also enrich the overall employee experience. With easy access to important documents, services and transactions through a user-friendly gateway, employees can take control of many personnel and financial matters without wasting time trying to reach the right HR representative with multiple phone calls or emails.
There are a number of ways organizations can deploy employee self-service capabilities. Stand-alone applications are available as either cloud-based or on-premises solutions, but these tools can create siloed process. Self-service capabilities are commonly woven into larger enterprise resource planning (ERP) and human resource information systems (HRIS), but these applications are costly and complex.
One of the best ways for small to midsize organizations to deploy a self-service HR portal is with a Microsoft SharePoint intranet. Unlike older intranet technology that essentially created collections of web links, SharePoint provides functionality for document and workflow management, team collaboration, news, tasks and deadlines.
The Microsoft-certified engineers and consultants at AdaptivEdge have deep expertise in crafting SharePoint solutions that enable customers to streamline business processes. Give us a call to discuss how we can help you use SharePoint to create self-service capabilities for your critical HR functions.
Written and composed by Lyndsay Soprano, Director of Marketing