5 HR Processes You Can Improve With the Use of HR Automation Tools

The HR department is responsible for the security, management and transfer of high-compliance employee data. Many of the processes managed by HR are time-consuming and require the highest attention to detail and utmost accuracy. Afterall, no matter what process, one-single piece of inaccurate information could mean the difference in an employee getting paid or not, or being covered with the right insurance. 

For HR professionals managing talent and/or payroll with manual processes, your company could be at risk of major loss of time and money due to inaccurate work. With HR automation tools, you can automate workflows in specific processes to improve accuracy and efficiency, eliminating hours spent on once manual tasks.

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Streamline Your Processes with HR Automation Tools

Let’s discuss a few HR processes that can be enhanced with HR automated solutions. With these tools, you also can integrate with other technologies to connect data and improve processes across departments, or externally with third-party providers.

1. Employee Self-Service

An Employee Self-Service tool is critical if you are looking to increase company-wide communication and transparency between employees, managers, HR and executive decision makers. The module is a central hub that stores various forms of high-compliance data. It can be integrated with internal tools including:

  • Benefits Management
  • Applicant Tracking System (ATS)
  • Onboarding
  • Performance Management and more

It can also be connected to external ERP systems, and/or other third-party tools for easier scalability when your requirements demand additional technology to be implemented. 

With access to an array of built-in tools, HR administrators can configure employee portals per individual employee, giving them a more customised view of the data that matters most to them. Hypothetically, you can give your employees the power to do the following with an Employee Self-Service module:

  • Manage PTO
  • Record work start and finish times
  • Review and select benefits
  • Download and print pay slips, W-2 and ACA forms
  • Track goals and manage performance
  • Submit expense reports
  • Take surveys
  • Access company documentation and more

The benefits of giving your company greater access as a whole will directly affect your employer brand and the ability to attain and retain top talent, too. 

2. Benefits Administration

Even with an automated Benefits Management module implemented, the administration process during Open Enrollment (OE) is still a very timely and detailed task. You must spend time making sure the employee population understands what choices are available to them and what the costs are to them as well. You also need to herd them through the process of making their selections on time and allow yourself enough time to ensure their selections are accurately submitted to appropriate carriers.

The entire process is all about communication, understanding, and meeting deadlines – which is a lot easier said than done when the topic of benefits and OE come up. Keeping employees engaged and aware during the process is a huge challenge too.

With the help of an automated Benefits Management module, HR administrators and employees will experience these improvements:

  • Employees can compare, analyse and check costs prior to enrollment
  • Employees can access consolidated benefit statements at any time
  • Administrators can configure rules for specified benefit options to appear in employee portals based on set criteria
  • Administrators can create and employ automated communications to keep the process moving
  • Employee selections are seamlessly sent to appropriate carriers via Electronic Data Interface (EDI) transfer
  • Benefit deductions are sent directly to payroll

3. Recruitment

The recruiting process can be exponentially improved with HR automation tools. This can be done for both HR administrators managing the process and for applicants experiencing it. An automated Applicant Tracking System (ATS) offers the following benefits:

Benefits for the recruitment team

  • Advanced configuration tools allow for process customisation
  • Automated communications can be dripped out to applicants, alerting them of where they stand in the process
  • A cloud-based ATS can integrate with job boards, seamlessly posting new openings on them
  • High-compliance data is secure and can be instantly transferred to connected internal and external automated tools
  • Connected with an onboarding module, you can create a seamless recruiting to onboarding transition
  • A talent bench is accumulated over time, allowing you to quickly access these resources when a new position opens matching their skills and qualifications

Benefits for job applicants

  • Account creation and logging in is no longer required
  • The application process takes just minutes
  • Receive automated updates from recruitment as the process unfolds

In addition to the day-to-day positive impact on recruiters and candidates, the talent acquisition team will benefit in the long-term through the data the system collects. This insight, compiled over time, can be analysed and used to improve the recruitment process a few ways, including:

  • Determining which workflows are working and which ones need improvement
  • Learning where improvements need to be made in the process department-by-department
  • Identifying areas where the application process for candidates can be improved

4. Onboarding

Without a structured onboarding process, you are at risk of losing your employees within the first 90 days of hiring them. An expensive lesson to learn when you factor in the cost of rehiring. As you know, recruitment and onboarding are a timely and costly process, especially if you’re relying on manual workflows to manage it.

With an automated Onboarding module, you can manage high-compliance forms more effectively and transfer that data from the recruiting and onboarding tools to any other systems you are integrated with including payroll, benefits management and more. 

HR and recruitment can configure a customisable onboarding experience per employee based on position, department, skill level, training programmes and more. When new hires have the direction, and everything is set up for them before their first day, they will be confident in you and themselves to be working in such an organised and supportive culture.

5. Performance

Allowing employees to direct their own career development is entirely possible with an automated Performance Management tool. With this module, they work with their direct managers to establish and complete individual goals that align to help meet the greater objectives and goals for the business in its entirety.

This type of HR automation tool provides real-time feedback of goals as employees complete them and managers review them. Forms that are completed within the module are seamlessly sent to appropriate systems and stakeholders for evaluation. With the tool holding performance history data, employees will feel properly evaluated and compensated when it comes to review time. When employees are happy and content, they perform better.

Theses types of HR automation tools feature unique scoring systems, send automated messages to appropriate stakeholders, provide comprehensive reporting to improve workflows and more.

Let’s face it – running an HR process manually is going to be costly and time-consuming to complete. Wouldn’t it be in your best interest to automate crucial HR processes and allow yourself the time to focus on the more “human” side of HR? With these HR automation tools, you can reach greater company-wide goals, enhance communication and transparency and grow your employer brand significantly.

Bryan May

Written by , VP Business Development at BirdDog HR

Bryan May joined BirdDogHR in 1999. Prior to becoming the VP of Business Development, he held numerous positions in account management and sales. Bryan has been instrumental in BirdDogHR’s product evolution from job boards to cloud-based integrated talent management software. He also pioneered the building and launching of the AGC of Iowa Career Center, a talent acquisition system that helps public employers document their "good faith" efforts for recruitment and recruitment advertising. He is the BirdDogHR expert on everything pertaining to talent management, diversity outreach, applicant collection, tracking and affirmative action compliance reporting.

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