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The Best of Times and the Worst of Times for HR Professionals

By Thomas Schneck • July 14, 2017 at 8:44 PM

Many organizations have reaped enormous benefits from more effectively managing the HR documents that are core to the HR process. SHRM (the Society for Human Resource Management) notes that “new tools, such as talent networks, crowdsourcing and internal social networks, hold the promise of increased flexibility and productivity.” That’s the good news. 

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The bad news is that MOST organizations have not yet digitized and automated HR workflows, creating huge inefficiencies and risks in their hiring, onboarding, retaining, employee servicing and offboarding practices. Unfortunately, there is a tendency to leap into a narrow and isolated cloud solution just to solve an immediate process pain. This creates new risk. Oversimplifying employee management and the management of HR documents leads to significant business and legal exposure.

Consider the variety and volume of documents associated with HR processes. Each carries different regulatory and legal requirements.

  • Job requisitions
  • Job applications
  • Resumes
  • New hire pre-boarding and onboarding documentation
  • I-9 and other government forms
  • Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave tracking
  • Employee status change notifications
  • Employee referrals
  • Timesheet processing and leave/vacation tracking
  • Travel requests
  • Expense reimbursement
  • Performance improvement plans and annual reviews
  • Exit interviews
  • Business process automation 

Some might argue that most organizations automated HR long ago. Perhaps on the data side, but not on the content and document side. AIIM research indicates that many HR organizations are still mired in paper-based processes.  When we asked, “What is paper usage in the following processes?” here are the percentages answering, percentages answering “A lot of documents are processed as paper documents”:

Recruiting and selection = 35%

Employee onboarding = 48%

Employee file management = 53%

Policies and procedures administration = 32%

Employee separation = 48%

Why is this important? HR has assumed a new, more strategic role. According to SHRM, here are some of the challenges facing HR professionals:

  1. Stepped-up competition for talent.
  2. New developments in technology.
  3. A rising sense of data and privacy insecurity.
  4. Economic insecurity and tight budgets.
  5. Demographic changes.
  6. Data-driven HR practices. 

Managing the day-to-day processing of HR documents must fit into this broader mandate. This is why narrow solutions with their own information silos that eliminate the immediate HR process pain are rarely sufficient.

As we’ve talked to customers about these trends and the challenges (and opportunities!) they face every day, we’ve discovered eight “must haves” as you consider your content platform:

  1. Ease of integration with other on-premises or SaaS process solutions.
  2. Management of employee information through the total lifecycle of the relationship, including disposition once it’s no longer required.
  3. Ease of use, including access on mobile devices.
  4. Ease and speed of implementation.
  5. Automated digital signatures and workflows.
  6. Secure and comprehensive audit trails.
  7. Secure protection of confidential information.
  8. Built-in compliance and regulatory workflows.

From these eight qualities, you can have complete confidence in digitizing and automating any HR workflow. 

 Learn more about DocuWare's preconfigured, cloud-based solution for Employee Management. 

Topics: Human Resources