Businesses that adapt to change and use new technology will thrive and grow. Those who hide away from it, won’t. It really doesn’t take too much common sense to see this.
We are already in an extremely digital lead world. There are mobile phones that can do almost everything, hoverboards, AI, along with endless amounts of technology that help businesses. So why with all the systems and technology that allow businesses to automate their manual processes, are there thousands of businesses stuck in the past?
We still receive numerous calls and emails from businesses looking for a new platform to book holidays, because they are still using paper forms and spreadsheets to manage holidays.
It really does shock us every time we hear the words, “paper forms” and “manual processes”. Why are so many businesses living in the past and not embracing digital transformation?
Digital technology has the potential to completely transform a business. However, it isn’t as easy as just saying; “Let’s start using technology now”. There are various steps that businesses need to take before making that digital transition.
For a business to take that digital step, HR needs to be heavily evolved. Everything runs through HR and without them, new systems and technology won’t be implemented. This is where the term HR digital transformation has come from.
What is HR digital transformation?
HR digital transformation is a process that HR undertakes that allows them to move away from manual processes, to automated, data-driven processes.
The term HR digital transformation does make it seem that it is solely HR that owns and benefit from this, however it the whole business, from top to bottom, that will benefit from a digital change.
For a smooth and complete digital transformation, there are 4 steps that HR needs to undertake.
4 steps for digital HR
Making the lives of your workforce easier by making manual processes automated is not that easy. There is no waving of a wand and saying some magic words but there are a few core steps that you can take.
1. Define your goals
Before making any steps on your digital transition journey you need to first define and set your goals. Without any goals, you will be aimlessly wandering around and never achieve anything. When defining your goals, there are two things you need to think about:
1. What you need
2. What employees need
These may seem obvious but they will massively help you define your goals. First, identify the processes your employees find laborious and time-consuming. Once you have done this, look at which of these you can automate with a digital system. This will not only help increase workplace productivity, it will quite simply make employees happy.
Once you have a list of what your employees want, now you should consider what you need. After all, your needs and employees’ needs, can be vastly different. Maybe you are struggling to get data on employee absence or it could be the fact you are struggling to keep track of when people apply for a job.
Make a full list of absolutely everything, no matter how small it may be.
2. Develop a strategy
Now you have your complete list of tools and technology that will help you and your employees, it is time to rank them. Again, there are two things you need to think about:
1. Who it will help
2. How it will help
You should already have this information from when you were defining your goals. However now you need to really dive into the information you collected. Will the sales team really benefit from having new laptops or is it just so they can take them home at the weekend?
However, don’t just think that because everyone has asked for something you must go and get it, or that a single piece of tech will give you everything you need. You need to really think about the benefit to the whole business and then and only then can you start building your HR tool kit.
3. Build your HR tool kit
Before you jump in at the deep end and go wild with the company card, make sure you take your time and compare multiple systems. It is vital that you pick the right tools that will help your business and one that will actually be used.
Once you have picked the digital tools you want, ensure they are easy to implement. Picking a tool where you are required to do most of the heavy lifting, not matter how good it is, is not the right way.
Thankfully, if one of those tools is our absence management system, then implementing it into your business is easy. We only have 9 simple steps and most of them we manage anyway.
4. Measure, measure, and measure again
The most important step is to measure the results. Some tools will allow you to do this easily. Providing statistics such as the number of customers converted, decrease in time spent doing certain jobs. However, there will be some tools that you may find hard to measure the success of.
The best way to go about seeing if the new technology you have selected is any good is by asking. Ask employees if they are happy with it, are they using it effectively, are they benefiting from it.
Make sure that the technology you have implemented is actually being used. Without feedback, you may believe that you have done a grand job and everyone is happy with the new digital change. However, what you don’t see is the employees and managers reverting back to their old habits. Your new shiny piece of tech is not quite what they wanted.
Yes, it can be frustrating to hear your new tool is not being used, but it is better to get it sorted rather than waste money on it.
What should you do next?
If after reading that you think; “That was nice, it would be great to make that digital transformation” and then decide to do nothing, you need to really think long and hard about it. HR digital transformation is not an option, it is a necessity. It is becoming increasingly harder and harder to maintain a sustainable business without the digital technology that your employees want, neigh demand, they will simply leave for a business that does offer technology that helps them.
If one of the processes you are looking to change is the way you book and manage employee absence, then you are in the right place. Our absence management solution is the perfect tool to book holidays, manage unplanned absences and do much more.
Why not book a demo with one of our absence experts and they can talk to you about exactly what you need and how we can help.
Chris is Chief Technology Officer and co-founder at edays. He has over 15 years of experience in developing industry-leading web-based applications with a broad, in-depth knowledge of IT and a true passion for solving problems through the use of technology.