Simply having a social media policy just won't cut it anymore for employers to be up-to-speed technology-wise, according to Trisha Zulic, who serves as the membership director for the Society for Human Resource Management's state of California office.
The national SHRM technology panel convened in Chicago in June and determined a list of 10 technology trends to give employers guidance on the essentials for their technological closets throughout the next year.
Zulic presented the 10 findings along with Paul Belliveau, managing director at AVANCÃ‰ - Human Capital Management saying, "don't let technology pass you by."
The two provided their thoughts on how these trends might impact the industry and why they're important to employers.
1) HR data is secure in the cloud: Belliveau said there is significant evidence to assure employers of this. "I've been through a number of sessions by technologists in HR and they've convinced me that the cloud, if done right, is infinitely more secure than outright," he said. "So when you ... talk to those at the C-level who have concerns, [you can tell them] 'it's much more secure than you think.'"
In fact, standard HR cloud technology has become "more secure than the standard that the Pentagon uses for secret clearance." Belliveau assured the employer crowd that the cloud has also been around for a long time and it's time that they consider engaging it. "ADP has been on the cloud for at least 20 years," he continued.
2) Gamification is here to stay: It's a way to communicate, engage, train, attract and retain talent with games for any sort of HR need, from values education to job training.
"Especially for the Millennials, they were born with gamification," Belliveau said. "You can probably use gamification to help build process flow, e-learning and for managers to learn new things for HR."
He explained that the message gets through to the workforce "infinitely" more quickly than simply reading text in an email. In a room of at least 100 HR managers, only one person raised their hand and said that they are using gamification, but she said it works for them to "communicate training, teach our employees our company values, engage with associates about what they'd like to see done different and to [house] a points and rewards system."
3) Social media needs to be integrated: This is a pretty simple one. Belliveau said it's time that all companies embrace this for "better communication and collaboration" because it's proven time and again to enhance organizations.
4) Virtualization and globalization will bring changes: Companies are becoming more flexible with remote or virtual workers, and are also expanding across country lines. As these changes continue to increase, it will necessitate the innovative use of better collaboration tools.
5) Cross functional innovation teams: Employers will begin to put together plans and projects to improve creativity, productivity and quality in the technology at their organizations.
6) Cloud and business process outsourcing: This will support business goals, allow HR professionals to focus on HR strategy and cut infrastructure costs and hassle. "I'm seeing a major shift away from on-premise implementation," Belliveau said. "Why not allow the care and feeding of applications through the environments that can support it?" He predicted that in the next two to three years HR purchases will tip in favor by 66% toward the cloud.
7) Mobile tools even more prevalent: "Mobile technology puts the right data into the right hands at right time and on the right device for the right task," Belliveau said. "This is going to be a requirement in the future. Taking the mobile devices that you have for collaboration. Now there are some concerns, but those are managerial issues. We know how to teach people to be grown-ups."
He also said there could be an increase in bring-your-own-device allowances at the workplace, especially for companies who might have hourly employees. It would allow them to remain connected when on the clock.
8) Big data: HR professionals need to become capable of harnessing and analyzing big data to drive business performance results.
9) Better networking: There will be an increase in the interoperability of systems, databases and tools through integration, consolidation and "suite" solutions (technology sold in bundles).
10) Speaking the same language: As technology continues to bring together HR professionals across the world, Belliveau and Zulic forecasted that at some point the industry will develop global standardized "definitions for HR terminology, metrics, data and models."
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