How Digital Adoption can accelerate the functioning of HR dept

Human Resource is an ever-evolving function, and one must look back even before the 19th Century to witness the evolution from labour welfare to personnel management to human resources administration to human resources management. The HR function witnessed changes like industrial psychology, observation of organization behaviours to the adoption of automation. This inclusion has led to newer ways of managing human minds at work. Embracing technology in HR aids in multiple ways such as day-to-day operations, creates scope for innovative thinking, a shift in mundane work and reduces time in processes. Tech adoption in HR processes has improved accuracy and speeded the entire cycle. Tech inclusivity has helped to invest time and efforts in the employee retention sphere. 

A digital complement to HR function:
In the current dynamic world that we live in, a plethora of automation tools and solutions exists in the HR space and a company can choose which automation applications are of relevance to them. In recent times when COVID-19 struck, digitalization gained prominence across the workplace. Adoption of technology, which was once considered as a gradual transformation in organizational culture, became the need of the hour at the workplace. The journey of managing the workforce in the pandemic was seamless due to this digital revolution. 

Digital adoption encouraged employee retention:
In today's environment, retaining critical talent is a huge problem for businesses. The problem of employees leaving their company in a short period can be controlled to some extent by management, but it cannot be eliminated. This is where digital adoption in the HR function comes to play.
One of the obvious outcomes of digitization is enhanced employee productivity. The focus of the HR department has shifted to optimizing employee productivity, engagement, teamwork, and career opportunities. One of their purposes is to enable people to get work done in more effective and productive ways. Customized apps, case management, AI and bots can boost an integrated employee experience to support their ongoing needs and lead to a better employee engagement and retention exercise.
Aspects of employee’s mental and financial health have emerged recently. These characteristics were supported easily through various digital platforms. Technology integration has enabled several critical tasks like connecting with employees virtually, onboarding talent seamlessly, integrating teams, ensuring collaboration, managing productivity and thereby rewarding them suitably. 

Development of HR Analytics model:
The analytics software is expected to bring enormous benefits to the HR domain as well. The analytics software is built to collect, process, and analyze data across all the verticals within the HR tech stack. The futuristic HR domain is likely to utilize the data to make strategic decisions when it comes to workforce planning and employee retention. HR advancement therefore can be explained as the incorporation of cloud, mobile, social, big data, and digital consumer experiences into human capital management. 

Emerging trends in HR:
The pandemic has created a new wave of skill sets that HR professionals look for hiring. These include digital capabilities, design thinking, agility, data orientation and network leadership. A report by KMPG suggests that some of the key technological trends to look for in the HR space are Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML), Conversational User Interfaces (CUI), Blockchain, Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR) and Big Data Analytics. Solutions are emerging around these technological advancements to help the HR department lay out a smooth employee experience as well as develop better avenues to retain employees.  

Application of AI & ML in HR:
AI and ML tools have already shown huge success in helping organizations in recruitment processes right from enhancing the reach to the right candidate segment in the market, to screening the relevant one and supporting efficiency in the various interfaces of the selection process. Some of the data and analytics tools can help HR in studying the past trends by creating predictive reports for HR to be more proactive than reactive in strategic human capital management. To constantly evolve and prosper, organizations need to make the most optimum use of these technological tools and integrate them into the system. 
A technology-driven workplace is proven to not only empower the employees but also retain them. It helps the personnel to invest their efforts in the right direction, build communities of interest at work, drive knowledge management exercises, add measurable business value and connect beyond the boundaries of their geographies or departments.
It is of utmost importance to always remember the ‘Human’ element embedded in the Human Resource function as a professional. In today’s times, the HR Leaders hold a responsibility to ensure that technology is only an aid and not a replacement to humane connect. Aristotle once said “Man is a Social Animal” and we all realized it during the pandemic. Everyone had a first-time experience of working in isolation through a digital platform. This led to various forms of concerns such as insecurities, lack of confidence and depression to an extent. In the pandemic, most of the people came to the consensus that the face-to-face interaction at the workplace creates a bond and motivates intrinsically resulting in enhanced productivity for the overall organization. 

Ms Manisha Prasad-Vice President and Head - Human Resources | CRIF India

Source: Publication: HREconomictimes ,19th Dec,2021