Save time. Save money. Protect your business from risk. And engage more effectively with your people. Here’s why it’s time to take cloud-based HR seriously.
More and more SMEs are switching from traditional, semi-paper-based HR to cloud-based systems. But you already knew that. Your email inbox is probably full of offers of automated solutions. If you haven’t yet investigated them further, it may be because you worry that automation may mean a loss of control, increased cost, greater distance between HR and your people, and yet another IT system to come to terms with.
But actually, cloud based-HR doesn’t have to mean any of that, especially if you’re already outsourcing your payroll. A cloud-based HR system helps you place all of your HR in one place, accessible from anywhere. It can help you spot upcoming staff/skills shortages before they happen. It can help you build a motivated workforce. Perhaps most importantly of all: it can save your business time, money and protect it from risk.
What is cloud-based HR?
For many businesses, HR admin remains a complicated hybrid of paper and computer-based systems. Leave is controlled on one spreadsheet. Sick absence on another. Performance appraisals are stored on an individual manager’s system. It’s messy. Making any change means calling or emailing the administrator. And if you’re out of the office, getting any HR information you need will usually mean emailing or phoning someone in the office and asking them to mail it to you.
The illusion is that, as long as you have the information held somewhere within the building, you somehow retain greater control over it than if it were sat on a remote server somewhere. But actually the opposite is true.
By placing HR in the cloud, all the information you hold about your people is stored ultra-securely and made available for any authorised person to access it anywhere. If you want to review a rota whilst working from home, you can. If you want to work on performance appraisals from a hotel room in Europe, you can. And with self-service, your people can handle much of their own HR for themselves.
Cloud HR has always been a valuable tool for making business admin simpler, quicker and more efficient. But if your business is one of the many likely to be operating a more flexible way of working post-pandemic, it could be essential.
What does cloud based HR do?
Most systems are customisable, enabling you to bolt on elements you want (such as recruitment, training or rota modules) and leave out anything you don’t. The following, then, is just one example of how your HR system could look – but you can decide the details for yourself.
Give your managers immediate access to HR data wherever they are. From rotas to sick leave reports to contingency planning, all your HR information is available in an instant so, from staff-absence patterns to staff shortages, your leaders are able to act faster.
Employee self service
Ditch the spreadsheets and free your staff from ever having to email for leave. With self-service, staff can make holiday requests, update their personal details and view their information at home or at work – which can save the business a huge amount of admin time.
It’s not only frustrating when HR issues get missed. It could potentially expose you to risk if, for example, a return to work interview was delayed (or omitted entirely). Workflow streamlining enables you to set the timings and processes for standard events, so everyone gets treated the same way and nothing gets missed.
Cloud HR can make it easier to stay on the right side of regulations like GDPR. You don’t have to worry about getting compliance right because the system helps to ensure it.
Set competencies, create and store personal development plans and use employee analysis to make performance reviews more rewarding for everyone. And with system reminders, employees and managers should find getting the reviews done on time is easier.
The cloud sounds more efficient (and it is). But doesn’t it take the humanity out of human resources? We’d argue that doing more on time (from return to work interviews to appraisals) is a good thing for everyone, but some systems go a stage further with dedicated engagement tools that enable everyone to provide feedback and praise to everyone else.
Makes outsourced payroll even more effective
Outsourcing your payroll is another way to make your business leaner and more effective. But when you combine the two – outsourced payroll with an integrated HR system – you get more than double the benefit. That’s because your HR system can feed your payroll the information it needs automatically. So you’ll no longer need to update personal details or manually add hours worked to your payroll submission. The HR system will do it all for you.
Make HR part of your payroll
Integrate HR with your payroll system and discover how much easier running your business becomes.