Last April, we discussed how the use of mobile technologies in Human Capital Management may not be as ubiquitous as some would believe despite the high number of Americans who own smartphones. Of course, there are always early adopters of technology who lead the trend in the use of every technology. So, the buzz never dies and the expectation is that mobile and social capabilities would be at the heart of every aspect of our lives and our businesses. Companies are naturally expected to gear up and deliver. The question is, have they? Let us look at mobile capabilities in this post.
There are many Human Resources tools used by employees in their work-a-day lives. Most larger companies have implemented “self-service” systems for issuing requests for additional personnel, tracking time worked, choosing health care plans and benefits, placing a time-off request, putting in request for expense reimbursements, annually renewing their acknowledgement of corporate policies, updating their personal information, and more. Even when they leave their position, the process is followed through with the aid of Human Capital Management systems. Now, imagine having many of these systems available for the employees and their managers (for approvals) on their mobiles like smartphones and tablets.
Of course, not all Human Capital Management systems offer mobile applications. There are technology challenges. Developing a mobile interface requires a different user interface. All of us have experienced a “bad” mobile app in which the same format and layout designed for a laptop is applied to the mobile device, making the application impossible to view or use. In reality, the effort required is the same as building a whole new product that performs the same functions, in the same ways, as when using a traditional device. The required investment of time and money only occurs when a company looks upon its Human Capital Management efforts as strategically important and essential to meet the company’s business objectives.
Some additional considerations:
When it comes to the use of mobile devices to support Human Resources applications, here is no single right answer for every company. One need not look at the costs alone because it is more of an investment into boosting productivity and reinforcing the company culture. And, every Human Capital Management activity should be individually considered when determining the value of the investment.
In the final analysis, mobile capabilities can help to make Human Capital Management more controllable, increase employee engagement, and improve the employer’s branding. They help processes information, collect data and offer analytics which enable decision making and improve the productivity of the organization. So, companies need to keep an open mind in the matter and adopt mobile technologies if they can visualize the advantages their use could bring to the HCM operations.
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