Does HR Technology Cost Jobs?
From the wheel to the robot arm, new workplace technology has always come with some amount of skepticism. While innovation can undoubtedly save time and money (and in some cases, greatly improve the condition of humanity), there’s always the concern that technology will cost some people their jobs. This anxiety is understandable, and unfortunately workforce reduction in some cases is inevitable.
However, given modern tech advances, that fear can be overstated—we are well beyond the industrial paradigm shift where “a computer took your job” is a valid or accurate concern. Today’s workforce technology largely looks to increase efficiency by better assisting employees in their roles—supporting workers not replacing them.
Here are some benefits to implementing modern workforce solutions for your employees:
Shift to Higher-Value Tasks for HR Workers
HR professionals tell us that more than half of their days are spent dealing with administrative tasks and employee information requests, such as Why is my paycheck for this amount? When will I get paid? How much is my overtime pay? and How can I request a sick day? Modern HR technology can reduce the number of administrative tasks that HR professionals handle daily. It can also answer employee information requests in real-time via mobile devices and consumer-grade apps. The result is more time to focus on implementing changes necessary to engage employees, meet their evolving needs, and partner with business leaders to support organizational priorities.
Enabled and Independent Employees
The goal of modern workforce management is to place many workplace functions directly in the hands of workers, literally, through handheld devices. Many employee processes—such as swapping shifts, requesting time off, or viewing schedules—are unnecessarily cumbersome and take too long because HR is tasked as the “middleman” for data that could be more efficiently accessed with modern technology. And when personal communication is necessary, it’s more convenient for workers to access an internal business messaging system directly through their workforce management smartphone app as a central hub of information and discussion.
Prescriptive and Proactive Mindsets
Many wrongly believe that “taking away work” necessarily leads to positions being eliminated. In reality, effective automation takes away low-skill and repetitive task work, freeing up employees to make higher-value contributions for improved operations.
“With modern HR technology, HR professionals will be able to pivot from being reactionary toward unwanted employee outcomes to now being proactive and prescriptive in solving employee challenges and problems—using data to detect issues before they escalate. HR pros can now focus on enhancing the employee experience.”
Mike Morini, CEO WorkForce Software
Updating workplace technology can be intimidating to employees of all types. Some will prefer older methods they’ve become accustomed to, others will be anxious about learning to navigate a new system, and some will fear that automation may lead to their positions becoming expendable.
But as we’ve shown, not only does new HR technology enable employees to act more independently and focus on bigger functions, it also seeks to support and empower employees, not replace them. With the added benefits of improved work/life balance, ease of communication, and digital convenience, workers and organizations alike can better achieve their primary goals without wasting valuable time on smaller, simpler tasks that can be easily automated.
There’s a unique opportunity for different functions of an organization to come together to put people front and center. This includes not just HR, but IT, operations, finance, and others. See how modern workforce management can be your greatest enabler to tap into the power of your people.
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