Human Resources processes have vastly expanded in scope over the past few years. In the past, HR was largely responsible for just hiring, firing, benefits, and payments. Over the past few decades though, HR departments have become larger and responsible for increasingly more important work that stretches across the entire business.
That work has taken on a more strategic stance as HR departments are increasingly in charge of guiding and forming the culture of the company and managing the relationships of the people within it. This is important work that can be the difference between retaining or repelling top industry talent. Despite this, many HR professionals’ daily tasks still consist of administrative work that consumes a lot of time but adds little value: filing requests, data entry, and processing forms, to name a few.
Companies who get the most out of their HR department get the most out of their employees. That’s why automating common HR processes and allowing workers to divert their time to more value-adding work is a vital part of a modern workplace.
Here’s a look at some of the most common HR processes that automation can streamline.
Traditional methods of filing expenses involve processing receipts manually: inputting each individual transaction into a spreadsheet, waiting for HR to approve it, and then for finance to reimburse it. Receipts are then manually collected and exchanged. This, by any measure, is a time-consuming process.
With automated expense filing, though, receipts can be processed remotely. A workflow can be created to automatically divert the receipt to the relevant person for approval, with a simple ‘approve’ or ‘reject’ option available. What was once a lengthy and time-consuming process can now be completed in seconds.
In most companies, HR isn’t responsible for approving or rejecting holiday requests. That responsibility lies with the employee’s line manager. But they are responsible for ensuring that all holiday requests are properly filed and documented with enough notice and that responses are given in a timely manner.
With HR process automation, however, much of this groundwork becomes unnecessary. Workflows can be configured to automatically reject requests that aren’t given enough notice. For the manager, responding is as simple as clicking ‘accept’ or ‘reject’, which encourages a seamless and timely response.
HR process automation can ensure that approval deadlines are met by setting tasks and reminding managers to respond on or by a certain date. Once that’s complete, the system can automatically program the holiday into everyone’s calendars, so everyone’s aware who’s available and when.
Performance appraisals are an HR activity that will always involve a degree of sensitivity and intuition – not skills that can be readily automated.
But a large part of performance appraisal management is simply a case of ensuring the right admin tasks are carried out at the right time. This involves filling out, submitting and properly filing review forms as well as scheduling the actual review, and ensuring any relevant pay changes are logged and processed after it has taken place.
These processes can be easily automated. When an employee joins, the workflow can automatically begin by scheduling tasks for the manager to complete the review form at the appropriate point in the future, even six or twelve months down the line.
Onboarding can be a long-winded process, but it’s also one of the most important on this list to get right. As they say, you don’t get a second chance at a first impression – and it’s important to ensure that your onboarding process is slick and effective, so your employees start off on the right foot.
Onboarding a new employee requires lots of paperwork for HR to send out, file and process – all of which can be digitized and automated with workflows. Contracts, contact information and reference requests can be automatically deployed, and the information contained within can be added to the relevant places, such as internal active directories. Templates can be created for order requisitions which can become automatically processed. Each stage of the automation process moves seamlessly towards the next, eliminating bottlenecks, hold-ups, and delays.
Creating a value-driven HR future
There’s no question that nowadays, HR offices have more on their plates. Much of this work involves important, valuable tasks that are vital to the success of any modern company. Hours spent filing paperwork, processing forms, and inputting data is taking time away from the higher value that HR workers undertake.
With Nintex Workflow Cloud, all of these HR processes and many more can be easily automated. It provides companies with the opportunity to customize workflows to the individual needs of their workers, meaning their unique processes can be preserved even through automation.
If you want to find out more about how to automate your HR and wider business processes, get in touch with Nintex today.