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What are the benefits of HR software?

Friday, December 19, 2014

When it comes to human resources (HR), small businesses like yours might not have a full HR department. Maybe you are currently performing all of the tasks of the HR department by yourself. But as your business grows, you’ll need more help managing HR. From small businesses to large corporations, HR software can help perform tasks and simplify the HR process. In this article, we’ll look at HR software, demonstrating what it is and how it can benefit your business. To start, let’s talk more about HR software.

What is HR software?

At the basic level, HR software helps business owners like you manage their people, processes, and information. Instead of tracking all of this manually, HR solutions help to streamline these management processes to save time and make your job easier. While you might think your business may not need HR technology, it is an essential tool to help your business run and your employees work more efficiently, while also reducing errors and maintaining compliance.

HR software is a broad term that encompasses the following functionalities:

  • Human Resources Management Systems or Human Resources Information Systems. Human Resources Management Systems (HRMS) and Human Resources Information Systems (HRIS) help HR manage employee information, payroll, and benefits administration. These systems also provide HR service functions like help desk duties and employee self-service dashboards. While the terms HRMS and HRIS were different in the past, they’re generally seen as synonymous today.
  • Workforce management. Workforce management helps HR manage employee work time. This functionality includes time clocks, time off, absence management, and scheduling.
  • Talent management. Talent management helps HR manage the full employee lifecycle. From recruiting to onboarding and career planning, learning and development, compensation and benefits planning, talent management is one of the most important functions of HR software.

As you can see, HR management systems can ease the burden of HR for small businesses. So, let’s look at some of the benefits HR software can provide.

What are the benefits of HR software?

No matter if you’re a small business that’s growing or an established business with lots of employees, HR software can help. Here are some of the biggest benefits of HR software.

Improves efficiency and productivity

One of the biggest benefits of HR software is that it improves employee efficiency and productivity. From tracking employee information to waiting for manager approval, there are a lot of people-centric tasks that your business can streamline with HR software. By automating these time-consuming tasks, your HR department gains back a lot of time in their day that they can put to better use. This automation makes it easy for managers to approve expenses, PTO requests, and other tasks, while giving employees the ability to update their personal information right in the software. Plus, with self-service portals, many HR software programs make these administrative HR tasks a breeze for employers and employees alike.

Boosts the employee experience

Another benefit of HR software is that it can improve your employees’ experiences in a number of ways. The first is that it can streamline processes like booking vacation time, changing benefit elections, recording work time, or submitting expense reimbursements. Because HR software can sync in real time with so many other functions of your business, including time management and expense management systems, the result is a streamlined experience for your employees.

HR software can also help with employee engagement and development. From tracking employee reviews to allowing other employees to give feedback to fellow coworkers, HR software can help increase employee performance. Some software even includes specific HR tools for boosting employee development, like educational modules, goal setting, performance reviews, surveys, and more. These human capital management tools are great for employee retention and can help keep your employees engaged and motivated, while providing you valuable performance management data.

Saves your business money

The next benefit of implementing HR software at your business is that it can help your bottom line. Employee payroll and benefits costs are two of the largest expenses for business owners. By streamlining the HR function at your business, HR software can free up time for HR employees at your business, thereby allowing them to put their time into other areas of your business. That means your business can optimize its spending by reducing staffing costs, or by redirecting your team’s focus. And while you may not see these cost savings in the near future, it will be a more efficient way to do business in the long run.

Streamlines the hiring process

HR software can help you improve your hiring process, which is one of the most crucial pieces of running a successful business. Many HR software programs give you access to applicant tracking systems (ATS) that allow you to keep track of potential candidates as well as post job openings to various online job sites. HR software lets you manage your candidates and the entire interview process, from their resume submission to their first day of work. This type of software can help you make sure you’re getting the best candidates for the job.

The applicants in your talent pool expect timely communication during the application and interview process. With ATS, your business can streamline and automate this communication, helping you to stay on top of the best candidates and make the best hiring decisions possible.

Helps you maintain compliance

Compliance is a big deal, and the rules and regulations are constantly changing. If you’re not familiar with these changing rules and regulations, it can cost your business time and money. With HR software, you’ll be able to maintain compliance much easier. That’s because the software can help you manage all of the documents and forms your employees need to sign while also storing them securely. Compliance tools make it easier for you to keep track of all the necessary information in one place, so you’ll have it at your fingertips when you need it. From employment status verification to labor law adherence, a good HR software can help your business manage all aspects of compliance.

Monitors time tracking, personal time off, and sick leave

If your business records employee hours, whether to bill clients or to pay employees who receive hourly compensation, HR software can help ensure accurate time tracking. When employees use time tracking integrations, they’ll be able to better track their hours. Some HR software even tracks time in and time out, ensuring employees get paid accurately for their time worked. HR software can also give employees access to their vacation time and sick leave, showing the available hours based on company policy. And by utilizing a self-service portal for these functions, HR software can reduce the time your HR professionals spend fielding specific questions about an employee’s time and attendance.

Improves security and risk management

Employee records contain a lot of sensitive data and information. When it comes to HR, making sure these records are secure is a major responsibility. Paper records can pose more risks to your business than electronic documentation, so with HR software, your business will be protected from those security risks. HR software can also help you protect your business with a customizable record management system of employee training, workers’ compensation claims, and disciplinary actions and notices. HR software also has some security features built in, with some providers offering role-based access to certain data, which protects employee data even further.

Digitizes record keeping

When it comes to HR, there’s a large amount of documentation and employee data records that you’re responsible for. Record keeping is one of the biggest administrative tasks in HR, and it's also one of the most tedious. While storing a hard copy of all of the documents can be a nuisance and take up valuable storage space at your business, HR management software can provide you with a digital record of all of these documents. With a robust digital library of documents, your records are accessible when you need them and you’ll be able to retrieve them with just a few clicks. From tax documents to performance reports and other pertinent information, you’ll be able to keep track of employee data all in one place. Plus, HR software capabilities allow you to share specific documents with employees. That means they’ll be able to have a digital record of important documents, from pay stubs to tax forms.

Aids in decision making

When it comes to running your business, you have to make a lot of important decisions. In order to do that, analyzing data is critical. With HR software, you and your HR staff can access a variety of metrics on your workforce, allowing you to pull reports to make informed decisions. This could mean hiring more experts in one area or shifting the focus of one or more employees. The more data you have, the more sound decisions you can make for your business.

As you can see, HR software is a great tool for streamlining the HR functions of your business. Whether freeing up your HR team to focus on other tasks or giving you as a small business owner more time to focus on your business, HR software is an important tool to consider adding to your business's toolbox. By putting this software to work, you’ll not only have a better picture of how your business is running, but you’ll also engage with your employees and improve their experience at your business. That’s a major key in retaining top talent and putting them in a position to be successful. When employees are growing with your business, you can expect your business to flourish, too.


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Heartland is the point of sale, payments and payroll solution of choice for entrepreneurs that need human-centered technology to sell more, keep customers coming back and spend less time in the back office. Nearly 1,000,000 businesses trust us to guide them through market changes and technology challenges, so they can stay competitive and focus on building remarkable businesses instead of managing the daily grind. Learn more at heartland.us.