Role of Technology in the HR Industry
A 2019 HCM Trends report from The HR Federation states that global HR technology venture capital reached $3.1 billion in 2018, more than triple the amount invested in 2017
A survey on the ‘Future of Workforce’ claimed that the HR function is the most vulnerable to be replaced by automation. If one were to look at the historical impact of technology, the claim feels removed from the truth. What technology has historically done across functions-replacing labour-intensive jobs in the immediate future to create new kinds of jobs in the long run- it is set to do the same for the HR department as well. In fact, A 2019 HCM Trends report from The HR Federation states that global HR technology venture capital reached $3.1 billion in 2018, more than triple the amount invested in 2017.
Tech in HR Operations
Powered by the new wave of technologies such as Automation, Digitisation, ML and AI, the HR industry has developed efficient and data-driven operations solutions with predictable ROIs, an indication of the graduation of the role of the HR from an administrative and compliance department to key decision and impact maker. Some of the major trends to have emerged include:
Laborious tasks like employee onboarding have been transformed with Robotic Process Automation so that repetitive jobs like creating records, documentation and adding employees in payroll systems can be made quicker and hassle-free.
Learning and Development
Employee training programs have become digital and catered to individual needs. These programs use interactive AI and AR/VR solutions as well as gamified L&D systems to ensure participation. It is also possible now to measure their effectiveness against clear ROIs and goals.
Data-driven decisions around promotions, compensation, training, employee retention and agile cross-functional team staffing can be taken with the help of HR analytics. Sentiment Analysis based on sentiment data generated through hundreds of interactions between managers and employees is also not unheard of in today’s time.
With HR Tech, companies are making way for dynamic goal setting, regular performance check-ins and crowd-sourced feedback. This kind of engagement, with data analytics to back it, makes employees feel more engaged and helps retain them.
Predicting workforce demand and attrition, searching for the right candidate, primary screening and interviews can all be achieved at a few clicks with intelligent AI systems.
Digitization of information coupled with the latest technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, elastic and deep search etc. has opened new possibilities in background verification. Technology has enabled the creation of proprietary databases and powerful search engines to scrape millions of data-points to generate precise results. Most importantly, technology has made it possible for us to deliver better data security and compliance to our clients, two crucial pillars of success for any business.
Technology is Learning to be Humane
Conventionally, the HR departments have relied on human judgement in understanding employees and their emotions, motivations, behaviour and complexities. While automation for operational tasks started a long time ago, the new-age technology powered by Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning is now ready to enable the HR department to make data-driven conclusions in relation to the nuance of human emotions and psychology as well. This technology is changing the ecosystem of the HR world and making it function in a way unimaginable a decade ago. Be it direct roles of learning and development, payroll management, onboarding, employee engagement or outsourced services like employee background screening, HRMS etc., technology has empowered the HR domain like never in the history before.
The Future of HR Tech Looks Bright
The global human resource management (HRM) sector is projected to reach $30 billion by 2025. The McKinsey Institute estimates that by this same time the global economic impact of AI will be somewhere between $7 and $13 trillion. With timely investment and right tech education, the HR function will be able to move beyond the mundane to create business efficiency. The successful HR leaders of the future will have a seat at the high table that they can use for a dialogue on the future of work, which is not expected to be linear but adaptive of the great needs of the new generation to grow across industries, verticals and departments. The future of HR holds an amalgam of tech with human capabilities and it’s time for HR leaders to embrace this future to build their own.
Ajay Trehan is a pioneer in modern background screening process outsourcing. He founded AuthBridge in 2005 and has built the company into a leading authority on background check management in India. Today, AuthBridge is a quality-driven, best practice company, delivering proven business impact risk advisory solutions to top draw clients, including Fortune 500 organisations.
Ajay’s perspective on the importance of risk assessment and mitigation drives AuthBridge’s culture of innovation and commitment to excellence. His passion for best standards in service and customer engagement has seen the company measure up to global quality benchmark, including ISO 9001 and ISO 27001 certifications. A visionary leader, Ajay has been critical to AuthBridge’s success and growth. While he is actively involved in formulating strategy and execution across the entire screening process lifecycle, Ajay also participates in guiding AuthBridge’s clients on Total Security Management – a risk advisory initiative of AuthBridge.