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Digitization in HR

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Lokesh Sikka, CHRO & Vice President, OnidaDo you ever imagine flying cars or robot butlers? Well that's science fiction, and it's hard to believe that this fiction is for the business world too. But things are slowly changing. What was not imaginable 10 or 20 years back, can be considered for real now, and same goes true in the field of Human Resource Management. The HR Function has evolved and transformed with the advent of social media and virtual sharing. There is a huge development in technology and emerging digitization possibilities. We do face challenges to attract talent, assess their potential, retain high potential employees, and others. Don't we want to ease-out these dilemmas by the way of digital insights?

Need for Automation
We are hearing so much about Artificial Intelligence, Talent Analytics, Chatbot, Augmented reality and how they can/are making a revolution in businesses. 2019 and the near future will see software going way above the basic features that they provide to HR processes. These features are still integral to technology, but more advanced tools are emerging. Automation is a predominant theme for HR innovation, with many functions becoming completely digitized, making HR professionals more involved in business and people strategy. How about smart tools scheduling interviews with candidates, conducting video interviews for screening, making communication more direct? Similarly, for payroll, employee benefits management, administrative scores, learning & development and other talent management practices, there is a notch of possibilities for HR to drive strategic tasks and automate operational tasks. The push to digitize HR will enable to connect with employees. Within HR, programs similar to Alexa or Siri could be applied to improve employee self-service and even enable employees to interact better with team members. Also, sources of data will provide information about productivity, work environment, culture and employee emotions.

Talent Acquisition & Recruitment Marketing
How to create a seamless candidate experience during the hiring process? This is quite possible with a digital recruitment lifecycle, right from applicant tracking to interviews to onboarding. We also need to focus on applying marketing strategies for recruiting. This includes attracting talent to the organization, a crunch faced mostly by industries.

An important aspect of this would include `Employer Branding' ­ the organization's repute and popularity as an employer, and the EVP (Employee Value Proposition). More than 70 percent of job seekers research about the company and the brand even before applying for the job. We can strengthen our employer brand by leveraging social media and various professional networks. The way we communicate with passive candidates and build a talent pipeline can be transformed using technology. Blogs and company review pages are also being used to enhance the company's brand image.

Talent Management: At the core of every organization are the people most valuable asset and people-first approach is being realized in business. A major change expected is creating a performance driven culture. The traditional process of performance ratings is expected to be replaced by dynamic goal setting, continuous performance check-ins and realtime feedback. Using HR Tech, employers will be more active in driving accountability to the employees, valuing conversation over documentation, and measuring progress. This level of engagement along with data analytics will help to access gaps and make them future-ready for diverse roles. This will also aid in decoding the retention issues.

Employee Wellness: Wellness traditionally meant attending to the health of employees through exercise and fitness plans. However, HR Tech will focus on employers addressing the emotional, physical and professional needs of its people. Distinctive HR Tech solutions include doctor consultation, preventive health check-ups, financial health advice, stress and anxiety coping mechanism.

Learning & Development: The conventional training methodology will see a change. With a view to create a digital workforce, learning and development will play a huge role. With the ongoing functional and technical training, added emphasis will be on developing soft skills like emotional intelligence, negotiation and others. Real time training via app will help to reach to employees working at remote locations. A gamified L & D system is the new trend which is helping incentivize the online training experience using badges, points and leaderboards.

Our major workforce is going to be `Millennials' who are change drivers. Most millennials are looking for a digital work environment where there is more flexibility, a platform to build their own development and growth plan. We have to continuously work in keeping our systems up with the current times and appealing to all our stakeholders. We are the leading change in the digitization process and we have to be mixologists, who are crafting the impeccable blend of people competencies with tech friendly solutions. The potential of HR Tech is abundant, and we have to just take advantages of this new era of technology!