There is no doubt that the company environments are changing fast and becoming increasingly complex because of business competition, enlarging globalization and technological changes. To cope with these dominating trends, Human Resources (HR) departments are looking to improve upon the complexity of information and processes, planning of work force and updating technology.
One important function of HR is to quickly identify a business process, clearly define the steps in the process and ensure that the execution of the process can be carried out electronically. Following the implementation of a process, its wide adoption within the organization becomes the next challenge. However, the benefits are enormous; its successful deployment can eventually turn the process into a self-service operation, saving resources and aligning with the expectation of the modern workforce.
Workforce planning is a demanding task because the actions are often laden with probabilistic scenarios of future growth, market fluctuations and competitive pressures. Within the realm of planning are other difficult undertakings of retaining and motivating employees, creating an environment of ‘belonging’ and building a knowledge based workforce.
When it comes to new technology injection for replacing outdated tools, there is no better word to describe than confusion as most HR practitioners have little knowledge of technology trends, tools in the market and time for comparison shopping. Sometimes, the IT department imposes a choice that turns out to be incompatible with the HR needs, so careful consideration of existing systems must play a critical role in the technology selection.
An intranet is a great platform to provide a digital workspace and a social environment for organizations. Such intranets can play a significant role in meeting HR challenges by supplying well-organized, timely and current information, store and retrieve employee records, convert HR transactions to self-service methods, assist in employee development and enable interactions in a modern fashion. Here are leading approaches to fully benefit from intranets.
BizPortals 365 provides Employee Center, which is a built-in hub for HR staff to organize and store contents regarding benefits such as health insurance, life insurance, retirement plans, profit sharing, vacation policies and holiday calendar. This conciseness of the presentation is particularly useful for smaller organizations as employees can quickly find topics of interest, thereby avoiding traversal via. a multitude of linked pages. Its features include:
- A video portal to store and play pre-recorded videos useful to all employees. The topics can range from training, company events to new useful practices.
- An announcement section to inform everyone regarding recent developments.
- A customizable content section, where information can be categorized and presented in suitable ways. It can display rich text with links and pictures, lists, events, a set of documents and forms.
- One or more document libraries to store policies, procedures and benefits related documents.
- A tools and resources section.
- A photo gallery to share company pictures.
- A section for important company contacts so employees don’t have to dig through complex navigation to find a routinely needed contact.
The dramatic shift in expectations from HR places convenient, one-stop, self-service as a priority. Bizportal provides a single point of contact for all employee self-service related activities.
Using organizational features in Employee Center of BizPortals 365, HR can group together information, documents and forms for various categories such as travel information and policies, health information and related forms, and employee activities with schedules. Employees are empowered to initiate HR transactions independently and efficiently on their own time.
Digital forms are built-in BizPortal Using robust Sharepoint technology. A set of forms has been designed to automate common tasks that most organizations use routinely. Example forms are:
- Leave management
- Timesheet recording
- Expense request and reimbursement
- Employee appraisal process
- Employee profile changes
- IT requests
Operationally, the forms go through a rigorous cycle of multi-level feedback and approval stages. Reminders are sent to whoever is responsible to take an action for moving the form to the next stage. At the end of a transaction, the records are automatically stored. Later, these records can be searched or analyzed for reporting. New methods as these inspire effective cost savings measures and reduction in HR staff.
Employee Recruitment and Development
HR can make an invaluable business impact by improving upon retention rate of skilled workforce. Amongst many, three factors stand out as essential for a healthy organization:
- Processes to quickly onboard new employees
- Recurring training courses for ongoing development of all employees
- A collaborative and inclusive environment to instill a sense of ownership, contribution and innovation amongst all employees
There are a number of features in BizPortals 365 to assist in these efforts.
Speedy recruitment of skilled workers requires a resume bank, which can be searched for specific skill sets and availability of potential candidates. In BizPortals 365, a resume library can be easily built to store resumes on which efficient search can be performed with appropriate criteria. Each resume is tagged with skills, experience level, location and availability. To find a set of resumes, simply search for the appropriate tags.
During the recruitment process, the prospective candidate is interviewed, followed by further discussions and finally provided with a job offer. The step-by-step recruitment procedure can be tracked electronically with notes to ensure that the discussions are properly documented and made available to individuals involved in the decision-making process.
Post recruitment, the onboarding procedure can be completely encapsulated by a workflow. Each step is carried out in a pre-defined order, tracked and monitored to ensure that the new employee has fulfilled all paperwork, and the office/IT setups are completed in a timely manner.
An intranet is a digital environment to allow employees to share a common platform. BizPortals 365 takes a people centric approach to value each employee’s contribution by providing tools and resources to participate and be recognized by others. Employee engagement is greatly enhanced by providing easy access to features for social collaboration. This includes tools such as
- People directory
- Feedback at every level
- Discussion tools to participate in an activity
- Contribution to knowledge base
- Shared news, announcements and events
- Spotlight section to acknowledge accomplishments
- Yammer for conversations