HR Software Trends 2020
Trends come and go, and the art of HR software crystal ball-gazing is always a gamble with reality. That said, usually, the worst we can say about the tech prophets is that, “They’re not right, yet,” but in time they often are (witness the mention of predictive analytics on most trend lists for the last several years; it’s coming but it’s taking a little longer than anticipated). Nevertheless, we offer a wide-ranging selection of predictions for growth and development for the next 12 months – ignore such predictions at your own risk!
AI – The Machines Are Still Coming!
Artificial intelligence still tops the list for many. Early use of AI in HR software is showing results and the feared disenfranchisement of human workers has not so far come to pass. Instead, AI is making contributions in analytics (crunching all that Big HR Data), recruitment (auto-sifting resumes), and customized onboarding. Not to mention the rise of HR chatbots looking to deal with employee questions. As the percentage of employees using HR technology to carry out their roles continues to increase the impact of AI in the workplace will only become more important.
Integration, Integration, Integration
It’s not news that more and more of our work is reliant on technology, and also on having the right app. Between ongoing BYOD strategies, the variety of best of breed HR apps and systems, and the natural human desire for convenience… how well your technology can share data and information becomes a critical factor – more than ever, we need well-executed integration for secure data sharing. Interestingly, the Software Path HRIS report indicates that 17% of businesses implemented a HR software suite in order to consolidate disparate systems.
Flexible working is not only increasingly popular but also actively encouraged. It’s now common to work as part of a team scattered across the country (or globe), a team that may never meet physically face to face. Yes, there are video-conferencing, messaging, and project management apps (Hangouts, Slack, Jira, etc.) and they are great enablers of flexible teamworking. Expect to see new tools being developed…
As a side effect, given that such apps often depend on communication via the Internet, this trend may also be driving businesses to look even more toward the cloud for deployment. In 2019, research showed 41% of companies preferring the cloud with nearly 56% having no preference – expect the balance to shift even more this year.
In HR, wellbeing is fast becoming THE buzzword. However, as a topic or field, wellbeing is highly fragmented, encompassing anything from mental health to emotional health, stress and burnout, physical fitness, financial circumstances… This is a ripe market ready for tech support that is more holistic in approach and scope than most systems can currently manage.
Besides the above, there are wider impacts in which society’s changing norms impact on HR software (e.g. implementing gender-neutral pronouns and language into the user interface) and the HR technology influences the practice of HR itself such as the ethics of how do we support employees whose jobs are changing/shrinking due to the use of artificial intelligence.
Apart from anything else, on a purely practical front, the selection of HR software is likely to become a more detailed and therefore lengthy process. According to the Software Path report, the current average time to identify the right HR system stands at 20 weeks. Expect that figure to grow.
Author: Dave Foxall
Dave is a writer for HRMS World who has worked as HR Manager for the Ministry of Justice for a number of years, he now writes on a broad range of topics including jazz music, and, of course, the HRMS software market.