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The rising impact of HR Tech

Rising Impact Of Hr Tech

Article posted by Dan Harry

​In this age of digital transformation in the workplace, every business function in almost every sector is evolving thanks to the adoption of new technology to streamline processes, harness data and become more competitive.

The global pandemic of the last 12 months has accelerated this adoption, particularly in HR compared to many other functions, as organisations have turned their focus onto the wellbeing and productivity of their employees, who have typically been working remotely. The demand for Cloud-based HR tools has understandably spiked in response to remote working, to enable companies to better evaluate productivity and engagement, with Workday recently announcing a 45% increase in share price in 2020 alone. The employee experience overall has also moved up the corporate agenda because skills shortages have become widespread, thereby making attraction and retention even more important.

Due to the wide-ranging roles within HR, tech adoption has already benefitted multiple areas, seeing legacy systems cast aside. AI and machine learning has successfully taken on many of the day-to-day administrative tasks, particularly in payroll, and transformed the HR function much like it has Finance teams, but what are the current trends in the market and what can we expect to see in terms of new tools in other areas of HR?

Hiring and onboarding:

AI such as chatbots and RPA are increasingly being used at the initial job application stages for efficiency and to free up HR professionals for more valuable duties, but increasingly sophisticated software is being introduced to mitigate unconscious bias during the next recruitment phases. With a renewed global focus on diversity, HR professionals can minimise inevitable human biases to ensure equal opportunities using this AI. Virtual reality is already a successful tool in Training, but we expect to see this used in onboarding too, particularly with remote hiring still with us. The ability for new starters to enjoy a virtual walkthrough of their new environment and learn health and safety requirements before their start date will save significant time and resources.

Employee focus:

With millennials and Gen Z now the largest share of the workforce, employers need to offer more than titles and salaries to attract the best talent. From flexible working to mentoring, engagement and development, HR has a major role to play in attracting and retaining staff, particularly when the length of service or loyalty carries much less importance today. Remote working has shown the importance of apps that make work easier to perform from outside the office, but also the advantage of tying everything together. HR system vendors are rapidly developing single, mobile-friendly, personalised interfaces for employee learning, connecting and collaborating, while any silo mentality between separate HR teams is being forced to come together into a single, cohesive cross-functional team working towards common goals.

Performance and feedback:

The days of annual appraisals are over, with more frequent, detailed reviews taking their place. Performance management and feedback is embracing technology and data to help track progress towards goals and keep employees motivated and aligned with objectives and culture. Online surveys are commonplace to gauge sentiment and avenues have been opened up for anonymous incident reporting to promote a safe, inclusive workplace. When the world pivoted to remote working, some employee monitoring tech was initially used as covert surveillance, with managers suspicious of how productive their staff were when they couldn’t see them. A year on, and the same tech is being used for the right reasons – to monitor employees for stress points or burnout and to proactively ensure people are not working too many hours or not taking breaks.

This rapid adoption of HR tech is paving the way for a buoyant time in the market, and we are currently seeing demand at all levels for SuccessFactors roles, for example. In Germany, we have a large number of in-house opportunities and are working with some major players in consulting, as well as niche houses, who all have requirements for quality candidates. If you would like to confidentially discuss your next move or career aspirations or want to understand more about the current European market and the best employers that can take your career to the next level, contact us today.

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Daniel HarryStatus is online

Daniel Harry

Specialist HR/IT Headhunter across the DACH region - Helping businesses accelerate their digital transformation.

Published • 1y

2 articles


As the HR Technology industry is going through so much digital transformation, I thought it was good timing to look at HR Tech's impact on the workplace. What are the current trends in the market? What new technologies and tools can we expect to see? How do we engage a new generation of workers?