Therefore, I can understand why so many human resources executives prefer to play it safe by opting out; however, is arguing that your company “is not ready for technology” actually putting your organization at greater risk?

It is easy to stick with what you know: remaining analog or refusing to upgrade or change the systems with which you are familiar keeps your team operating at a level of “good enough.”

But while “good enough” may be good enough for organizations that don’t mind a plateau in productivity, efficiency, and growth, a June 2014 HR Delivery and Technology Survey from Towers Watson reveals that, because technology is a large and increasingly important driver of HR effectiveness and efficiency, a majority of companies are investing in HR technology this year—and that the number of companies making those investments is on the rise.

Here is where the risk for your organization comes into play: there is a very good chance that those numbers include your competitors.

According to the same survey, “adoption of SaaS [software as a service] is up from last year,” with a robust 40% of companies “only considering SaaS-based solutions for their new HRMS, with better functionality as their number one expected benefit.”

While this statistic applies specifically to HR Management Systems, we can logically assume that HR departments are becoming more reliant on and trusting of technology as it applies to all processes. We have seen recruitment lead the way in this sphere, with a new recruitment technology company starting up seemingly every week. (Per a recent column by Bill Kutik for Human Resource Executive “recruiting software continues to be the greatest source of innovation in HR technology.”)

But what about other areas of human capital management? What about outplacement?

Our industry clings to the tagline: “putting the human in human resources.” We cling for good reason: humans are the most important part of the equation. Human resources is neither a place for cold and continuous calculation of data nor a robotic revolving door. Human resources should provide opportunities for humans to share resources with other humans—but nowhere in that statement is technology precluded from making that resource sharing easier.

It is clear from the study’s results that more and more human resources departments are exploring the technologies that purport to make the delivery of human resources to other humans possible—and from the uptick in companies that have adopted and are continuing to invest in that technology, it is also clear that they find the technology to be working.

That is why, when I make the case for outplacement services aided by technology—the case for my company, RiseSmart—I do so with confidence that it is possible to keep the human in human resources (that old refrain) while also making it easier for humans—for your HR staff to get their jobs done and your impacted employees to land new jobs faster.

We’ve already seen tremendous results in both placement rates and cost savings for the companies that have pioneered the addition of a high-tech, high-touch delivery to their outplacement services—the companies that were more afraid of plateau and the risk of stagnation than of changing or improving their processes.

And as we see more and more companies—perhaps your competitors or your peers—move toward agility in their outplacement alongside their streamlined HRMS and social-optimized ATS, I must pause and ask,

If your company is not ready for technology now…when will it be?

30 June 2014

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