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How can technology make HR more innovative?

Most people don’t associate HR with innovation. They associate HR with management, rules, policies, KRAs, increments, payroll administration etc.

However today’s “always on” workers are more connected, net-savvy, and expect their employee benefits to be delivered to them at the push of a button. This new kind of workplace demands innovation – and not just administration to create high impact HR changes at the organization level.

Read how Google became the No.#3 most valuable firm by using people analytics to reinvent HR http://www.eremedia.com/ere/how-google-became-the-3-most-valuable-firm-by-using-people-analytics-to-reinvent-hr/.

Cloud-based applications provide affordable self-serve platforms to automate HR processes, and make information dissemination efficient and transparent. Internal customers, your employees also look for nicely-designed systems that promise good user experience. Bureaucracy and paperwork are out and HR ecosystem are becoming more employee-vital and employee-friendly.

What’s making all this possible are data analytics to gain greater insights into employee wants. Research indicates that over 92% of HR leaders are big consumers of analytics programmes that are reshaping their priorities and making them more employee-responsive.

Watch Gary Hamel, celebrated management thinker and author and co-founder of the Management Innovation eXchange (MIX), make the case for reinventing management for the 21st century – http://www.managementexchange.com/video/gary-hamel-reinventing-technology-human-accomplishment.

Besides, here are some real-world examples of the kind of innovative practices that are being implemented at big companies, but can be emulated anywhere in the world.

Starbucks

The coffee brand has moved talent acquisition data to the cloud in order to land the right resources, anywhere and everywhere.

AMX

Part of the HARMAN Professional Division, AMX has invested heavily in its hiring practices and layoff procedures, making the company a leader in employee relations.

SAS

In 2014, SAS was ranked No. 2 on Fortune’s list of the Best Companies to Work For in the US, mainly due to its innovative hiring practices.

Twitter

Twitter provides work-life balance, and pays a lot of training to mid-rung managers on how to lead.

LinkedIn

Glassdoor placed LinkedIn at No.#23 slot in their 50 Best Places to Work at in 2015. The team dynamics at LinkedIn sets it apart from competition and encourages employees to question a status quo that’s dysfunctional.

Ford

From the days of Henry Ford, Ford is recognized for its highly-disciplined work culture, outstanding training opportunities, and consistent HR processes.  At Ford, data and discipline are valued higher than emotion and nepotism.

BT

During the most difficult years of global recession, when most companies were laying off employees, BT was retaining, retraining, and redeploying existing staff.

Prudential

Unlike other insurance players, ICICI Prudential does not have high turnover or absenteeism.

Here are some HR initiatives that can embed innovation into your organizational DNA

  • Reinforce the importance of innovation
  • Break down internal silos and promote a resource-sharing culture
  • Develop leaders to continually “horizon scan” to get an innovation process rolling
  • Identify and empower innovators in your organization by minimizing boundaries and barriers
  • Leverage technology to encourage cross organization networking and collaboration
  • Facilitate the implementation of new work practices that drive innovation

Above all, remember that the future of HR has technology embedded completely within it.