Technology-based HR platforms are driving employee engagement and, as a result, are steadily increasing the amount of feedback employers must take into consideration. These new software systems and product features are moving away from management and toward the employee as the designated user; making HR a more data-driven, open and collaborative process.
As more socially-minded millennials enter the workforce and as the job market booms, employees are coming to terms with their newly-discovered bargaining power. Dissatisfied with your current company culture? Move on to the next one!
Employees are becoming more like consumers of work, with the onus placed on brands to attract and retain the top talent. Just like consumers, if workers are dissatisfied with the experience offered by the company, they will switch. Job hopping is indeed rampant, and in 2016, retaining employees will be one of the main issues facing HR teams.
To alleviate this major concern, many companies will look to employee well-being and other engagement tools to better understand how to motivate and maintain their existing workforce. But if your organization is a technology lagger, then you are missing out on key data points to better manage your workforce’s needs and expectations of you.
3 Technology Trends Disrupting HR
To fully understand how to collect, analyze and leverage the data, HR professionals need to be aware of the various technologies and tools available to them; including the top three disruptive HR technology trends.
Data-Based & Predictive
“Feedback management” is a form of management that relies on constant employee input, and it may swiftly become the norm in 2016. The aim is to gauge workforce sentiment, ideally using real-time data, so that problems evaporate before the employees do.
The “pulse”, or always-on employee engagement survey provides employers with real-time analytics on the health of their organization and looks at various customizable factors affecting employee engagement (e.g. management, salary, benefits, work-life balance, etc.). The software then tracks the relationship between the satisfaction and the importance of each factor for every employee.
This is the data-collection phase of feedback management, and is then followed by the analytics process. Analytics software can provide predictions, recommendations, and insights on people practices after the data has been collected – whether it comes from the survey, the course, or the performance appraisal. Kanjoya, for example, provides rich semantic analysis of open text, which allows management to spot trends in the employee data, and to uncover meaning and themes that aren’t immediately visible.
As these HR tools will be used by employees themselves, they will have to feature a user interface that is both easy to use and compelling; otherwise employees will simply not engage with them. Purchasing software that is hard to use, requires lots of training or if not fully integrated with the existing environment is a waste of money, as employees won’t use it. Just like modern consumers, speed and efficiency are top priorities to these employees.
The most effective technology will also be fun to use and game-like. Millennials have more social work habits and tend to value openness in the workplace. Software that promotes fun and collaboration will likely be adopted more enthusiastically by this demographic.
Mobile is overtaking desktop as the most popular engagement device across markets. HR tech will have to keep up by offering apps for job applicants and current employees; Glassdoor estimates that 45 percent of all candidates now apply for jobs using mobile devices.
“Appifying” your HR systems will be essential for enhancing candidate quality, as well as for employee productivity and retention. Emotion monitoring apps, for example, work in a similar way to staff surveys, in that they are an accurate and convenient way to understand sentiment in your workforce, and can be used to guide management when making structural changes.
When choosing a provider, make sure the app has an intuitive user experience. Remember, mobility is not about the device, it's about people!
Knowing which HR technologies to deploy starts with making the commitment to improve the work experience for your employees. Really listen to employee feedback and develop plans that act on it. Doing so will be the difference between being viewed as a top employer in your field versus one where your employees are feeling like their opinions fall on deaf ears.
Luke is a digital marketing executive at AccuraCast, a London-based agency, who writes extensively about consumer and HR technology trends.