The COVID19 pandemic has clearly shown the importance of digitizing HR processes in times of crisis. Automation and fluidity in the management of such processes, as well as regulatory compliance, have been flagged as the two key aspects in which digital—in particular, technology solutions for HR management— has proven to be useful for delivering the trust and agility necessary to help companies in their recovery.
In this context, the HR department, in its leading role before, during, and after the COVID-19 pandemic has been able to adapt and respond to the challenges. And this ability to react has been possible thanks to the first steps it took in digitization: according to the “MARKESS by exægis” study, 82% of HR managers surveyed already have technological tools to automate processes, especially for payroll, personnel administration, as well as time and attendance management. Specifically, 70% of them have pledged to process automation and 66% to improving the performance of the HR function.
Automation and protection of administrative tasks
During crisis periods, process automation has enabled HR departments to withstand the excess burden of tasks, while adapting to the new ways of working that have emerged. For instance, digitization enables limiting the impact and reducing the time previously devoted to payroll rectification, while also making it possible to deal with other unforeseen, immediate, and far-reaching situations.
Furthermore, this period has been marked by the need to make improvised decisions adapted to the circumstances, and plainly demonstrating the need for fully digitized organizations. The plethora of HR digitization projects in the HR field must be prioritized according to each company’s challenges and needs, especially the following for:
- Reviewing the recruitment process with ready to use tools: video, online testing, etc.
- Managing the onboarding process with the takeaway lessons learnt from lockdown experiences.
- Digitizing administrative procedures, like the electronic signature for the balance of all accounts, the certificate for returning equipment , etc.
Smoother information exchange
Once HR administrative processes are digitized, or being done, HR can take another important step: loading up data.
In certain situations, like the ones experienced today, there is an increase in regulatory provisions, and it takes some time to assimilate and manage all this new information. This causes delays in decision making and even misinterpretations. Using a technology solution enables HR to focus directly on the measures impacting the business and modify all the parameters in real time. This way, the risk of omitting critical issues or making possible mistakes is minimized. Thus, also achieving time savings in bureaucratic tasks.
This allows more time to be spent on keeping employees informed. Again, it is evident that digitization favours information exchange in organizations, and consequently the employee experience is significantly improved.
Regulatory compliance, trust, and agility
COVID-19 has shown that regulatory changes can be extremely changeable in adverse circumstances, and HR must ensure proper compliance for all these changes. Digitization makes it possible to be effective even when changes occur unexpectedly and to anticipate critical situations.
Coronavirus has demonstrated HR’s ability to act flexibly and agilely to meet the new challenges as they arise and thus guarantee business continuity. Teleworking is a clear example. Thus, according to the previously mentioned “MARKESS by exægis” survey 46% of HR teams discovered that digital solutions provided to employees were not always suitable for teleworking. If teleworking has come to take up a major place in running companies, it is important that each employee has the right equipment, with connected, collaborative tools, and more, and above all, to make sure employees have a safe environment.