Have you ever bought anything from a store’s “as seen on TV” section? I’m guilty of it and the proud owner of my own personal Snuggie – an ingenious idea. Odds are, many of the impulse items you purchase end up on top of a bookshelf where it serves as a dust collector. Perhaps the same is true of your HRIS software, but unlike The Shake Weight, your HR software serves a more profound purpose.
Organizations – just like the everyday consumer – are dealing with a condition known as “shelfware,” otherwise known as the partial adoption of a product. This paradox threatens organizations across the country, especially as it relates to their return on investment.
Underutilized and Underappreciated
Spending on HR tools continues to grow; nearly 33 percent of organizations anticipate spending 20 percent or more in the coming years, which fuels a greater demand for HR technologies. According to a Towers Watson study, one in three companies plan to change its HR software structure within the next two years.
With an influx of new technologies hitting the market, it is reported as much as 60 percent of software functionality is not being used. Are you getting all you paid for out of your HR software or is it becoming shelfware?
Three Main Reasons HR Software Is Underutilized
- Lack of proper usage – HR software isn’t strictly an HR tool; rather, the functionalities and information provided should transpire throughout the organization. Manager self-service, employee self-service and reporting are tools intended to empower others, giving them access to the pertinent information they need. If used correctly, HR software should make work easier and give HR more time to be strategic. Don’t just take it from me; here’s an open letter from your employees.
- Lack of time – Paycom’s CIO once said, “Technology should do two things: It either makes your life easier or it empowers you to do things you couldn’t before.” HR software should be simple and easy to use. The reason many implementations fail is because the process takes too much time. This is partly due to overcomplicated system installs. Integrated or on-premise systems have underlying complexities and might not always adapt well with existing solutions. Oftentimes, these scenarios put a huge time constraint on IT and HR.
- Lack of proper training – All too often, companies lack the training needed to effectively deploy and manage HR technology solutions, and as a result, products are left collecting dust on the shelf. Switching systems is daunting, which is why it is important to have a service representative there to guide you through the implementation process and beyond. This representative becomes your lifeline, but only if he or she knows every offering or application through and through. If your HR software partners for its offerings, chances are you may be passed around from person to person looking for answers.
As the HR software market continues to heat up and companies shift their focus toward improving technologies, fully equipped HR teams stand a far greater chance of delivering value. However, there’s more to it than just having the right software. Organizations must use their HR software to its fullest capabilities, and those who get it will outperform the rest of the pack.
Don’t let your HR software become just another prop on the shelf.