Cloud HCM’s Impact on HR Service Delivery

January 16, 2017 | Daniel Staley | HCI
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We all know the transition to Cloud HCM (human capital management) has been wide-spread and transformational for many organizations across the globe.  Nearly every HR department I talk with has either moved their HR applications, is in the process of moving or is assessing their ability to move upwards into the cloud.  But, for those that have made the leap, has it had the intended, positive impact on HR’s service delivery capability?

Well, we figured you may be interested in the answer, so we added that question to this year’s HR Technology survey (which we’d like you to participate in, by the way – shameless plug).  We asked companies to convey whether the cloud has: had any significant impact on service delivery, allowed HR to reduce support resources required, enabled increased employee and manager self-service, and/or allowed HR to spend more time as a consultant to the business.

So, back to the question, has cloud HCM really “moved the needle” on HR’s ability to raise their game?

It appears that the answer is “yes”.  While we are only a few months into our survey being open – with one more month to go (so, full transparency, the results could change) – the trend line is telling us that roughly 75% of companies feel that their move to the cloud has enabled better HR service delivery.

For instance, 55% so far have reported that their transition to the Cloud made a significant difference in the amount of time HR now spends proactively consulting with business partners (versus performing transaction processing).  Further, 62% found that the improved user experience delivered by their cloud vendors allowed them to increase the usage of Employee or Manager Self-Service.  Much of this is due to the significant strides that cloud vendors have made in the areas of mobile enablement. 

One other data point: Innovation, not headcount reduction, has been a much bigger focus of US-based companies adopting cloud technology.  To back that up, so far only 12% credit Cloud HCM with lowering their HR personnel support costs.  That may explain another one of the data points from the survey.  On average, the feeling was that at least 70% of the projected business case benefits would be achieved.  Perhaps an over exaggeration in various business cases around headcount gains.  The important take away is that increased innovation, agility, and effectiveness are the real values delivered with cloud.  Hard dollar savings should not be the primary mission.  It is difficult to quantify the value of HR’s increased ability – through deployment of better tools, access to greater people insights and simply having more time - to help the business find and develop the necessary talent to achieve their mission critical objectives.

We look forward to compiling the full results of this year’s survey and sharing the insights with you early next year.  In the meantime, let your voice be heard – click here to take our survey if you haven’t already.

Follow me @Staley_Dan for additional insights.