Human Resource Management: Planning for HR Technology

HR Technology Conference & Tools

HR Technology Conferences Perfect for Development and Finding New HR Tools

This is week happens to be the 14th annual HR Technology Conference happening in Las Vegas where 4,000 senior human resource practitioners, thought leaders, and human resource service providers come together to discuss new technologies and the evolution of workflow  tools and HR.  Most as often human resources practitioners, we arrive into a new position within a new organization left with old and unfamiliar HR systems and technology in place that doesn’t suit our needs, our organizations, or our people.  And so human resources begins the process of absorbing and evaluating new systems and technology options depending on their organizational or departmental goals, budgets, and needs.

HR Conferences: Hotbeds of Technology for Human Resource Management Tools

Today at the HR Technology Conference there were a lot of announcements like HR MarketerADP,  BranchOut and CareerBuilderJobViteStarr ConspiracySuccess Factors, and Bullhorn Reach as well as many, many more .

This research, evaluation, and buying process can be daunting to the average HR practitioner which is one of the reasons why the HR Technology Conference fills a valuable and necessary need in the search for technology in talent, HR, and recruitment spaces.  Unfortunately, not everyone can make the trip to HR Tech and even if you do, it can be overwhelming to navigate the technology vendor and service provider selection process.

How to Get the Most of Your HR Technology Conference Experience

  • Do your research before the HR conference.  This is easier said than done.  This means doing your homework to determine the top players in the space and if these vendors can meet your organizational and budgetary needs.  Often times vendors are tight lipped about their pricing whether its by seat, set up costs, and maintenance.  Putting together a list of viable prospects after talking with peers and online research can help you narrow down the field.
  • Ask the HR Experts.  One of the biggest risks when selecting a new workflow management system, applicant tracking system, payroll software, or other HR tech tool is that many executives and senior HR leaders select these types of products maybe once, twice, or three times a career span.  This can be daunting and the knowledge and research process can be a task.  Depending on your time and organization’s budget, it makes sense to bring in a consultant who understands the product offers and can help guide you through the process.
  • As for Software Demos.  Never underestimate the power of a tool demo.  Either in person or via webex, these HR product demonstrations can give you an idea of the look, feel, and navigation of site.  Be sure to ask questions about customization and the costs that may be associated with these specialty add ons.  These hidden fees seem to creep up after our team has already signed the contract and made the commitment leaving us in an uncomfortable position.
  • Involve Your End Users.  This has always been one of my pain points as an end user who is responsible for navigating and managing HR.  End users should include job seekers who are completing the company application process as well as the human resource professionals, payroll administrators, and recruiters who use and manage these systems on a daily basis.  A small change or addition may seem costly, like $50,000 costly but as an end user it takes an additional 45 minutes of my day (as well as my colleagues) over the life of the software, the cost is well worth it.

Consider all four of these angles and insights when starting your HR technology shopping.  Spending the time and asking the right questions can impact the bottom line of your human resource management department and also make for very happy executives and end users. 

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell is the founder of Workology, a digital resource that reaches more than a half million HR and workplace leaders each month and host of the Workology Podcast. Jessica lives in Austin, TX, with her husband, daughter, and an assortment of furry family members.


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