Future proof HR: Unleashing technology for HR transformation success

HR is complex. One, because it is about people. Two, because the people are different today than they were before – read the technology native millennial. And three, because we cannot predict the nature of change in the technology environment that is rapidly changing the behavior and needs of the said group.
In summary for HR to do right by its function within the organization and by its audience, the very grain of the HR organization needs to transform, into an agile, tech enabled function that operates both at the speed of technology disruption and that of the millennial mind. Equally important is the need for the HR organization to be able to gaze into the future in order to stay relevant, well into that future.

Enter; The need for a strategic view and an orientation to business outcomes of the future. This can only be possible with chopping down of administrative time-guzzling load – and a fundamental rethink of core organizational processes and the way employees interact with work. For a function historically rooted in compliance and transaction, this HR transformation is all the more difficult. No wonder then, that technology adoption by the HR organization is already seen as the only way to solve for this problem.

Our Study across more than 670 organizations in APAC reveals that the adoption of technology in HR is growing at an explosive pace across the region. Close to 80% of the respondents who participated in the study are evaluating automation use cases and building scale for future investments in the area. The study also suggests that process automation, machine learning and chat-bots are likely to see the maximum growth in APAC, with payroll/benefits administration, learning administration, reporting/analytics and talent acquisition being the main functional areas that will see maximum impact.

In fact, mature APAC firms are already using machine learning platforms to link data across the organization to gain insights on the performance of managers, keep track of productivity, and even predict potential compliance failures. At an employee level, automation and robotics are creating an impact by offering a far superior workplace experience. As these tools become mainstream in big HR transformation technology platforms, we will likely see more interconnected applications.

But in the end – technology is an enabler, and to use the GIGO (Garbage In Garbage Out) logic, delivers as much value as the organization will put into it, both at the input stage and also at the subsequent application stage.

What is the organization’s long term vision as a business?  Who is the customer audience for the business and how are they changing? What kind of employees will be needed today and tomorrow to be able to serve the customer of the future? HR leaders need to have this view and be able to evaluate technology solutions that will aid them in the HR transformation journey both of their function and also of the organization. There is no answer to any of these questions that is a guarantee of future success, but if HR leaders do not start thinking like this today, they will likely find themselves caught in the headlights of oncoming traffic on the AutoBahn.