Iron Mountain recently worked with HR.com to survey HR.com’s membership base of Human Resources (HR) professionals in both large (2500+ employees) and mid-sized (500-2500 employees) organizations. The goal of the research was to better understand the current state as well as the possible future of the automation of HR processes. To summarize two of the most compelling findings for the state of HR automation in today’s mid-sized organizations: respondents from highly automated HR departments are about twice as likely to enjoy above-average productivity and considerably more likely as those from the least automated HR departments to say they enjoyed above average HR effectiveness (38% to 25%).
Research has shown that across the board both large and mid-sized organizations want to automate more of their HR processes. However, their priorities differ.
When it comes to current HR processes that are most likely already automated within a mid-sized organization, time and attendance (71%), payroll management (69%) and benefits (56%) top the list, according to our survey.
In comparison, large organizations cited onboarding (46%), recruitment and selection (38%), and benefits (35%) as the HR processes to most likely to be automated in the next two years, the survey found.
There are a few reasons that mid-sized organizations are so focused on, and heavily automate, time and attendance processes. First, by having time and attendance processes automated, the risk of not paying employees properly is reduced which, in turn, helps smaller organizations avoid having disgruntled employees.
Automating time and attendance processes also helps classify time more accurately which will potentially help decrease inflation that may occur when tracking time manually.
Then, lastly, with automated time and attendance processes, the chance for human error is eliminated, something that is apparent with more manual processes.
Ultimately, all of these things add up and could significantly impact the bottom line of a smaller company.
Most organizations want to automate their HR processes
The survey found several other interesting findings pertaining to the automation of HR workflows in mid-sized organizations:
Most organizations are not highly automated. But they want to be. According to the survey, 36% of respondents from mid-sized organizations said their HR processes are highly automated while 64% said less than half of their HR processes are automated.
- Transactional processes are much more likely to be automated. With onboarding being the next process to most likely be automated in mid-sized organizations.
- Most organizations want to automate. According to the survey, most organizations want to automate their HR processes to increase efficiency and effectiveness. However, many are not automating these processes because they perceive certain barriers such as lack of resources and outdated technology.
Tips to help your organization successfully automate HR processes
It’s clear that the benefits HR workflow automation brings to larger organizations is too good to pass up. Here are some recommendations to consider on your HR automation journey:
Automate foundational HR processes first before moving to more complex processes.
- Take a close look at onboarding automation.
- Build a business case for automation.
- Increase your HR team’s digital and technical literacy.
- Be systematic about technology purchase decisions.
- Develop and deliver meaningful analytics.
- Implement new technology effectively.
To learn more about these findings in depth, please read the State of HR Automation in Mid-Sized Organizations report here.