HR departments play a vital role in companies and dealing with so many documents on a daily basis can cause a number of challenges for an HR team. Digitizing HR can make a big difference, not only by speeding up processes but increasing efficiency and compliance too.
Many large companies have already done away with their legacy systems and opted for fully automated, digital systems. Here are six ways digitizing your HR department could benefit your business.
1. Improve compliance
HR records are subject to strict legislation when it comes to confidentiality of sensitive data and retention of information. When a system is digitized, there is no concern about misplaced or lost paperwork. All records and files are converted to digital documents that are easy to store, either locally or in the cloud.
Compliance is made easy if electronic records are acceptable. Documents are managed more easily and kept secure until they are required.
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2. Balance privacy and accessibility
Physical files are vulnerable and digital HR offers more protection for them. It is easier to break into a filing cabinet than it is to access well-protected files on a computer.
They can be secured and made accessible only to those with the relevant permissions. If you store them in the cloud and they are guarded by protective features, this offers another layer of protection.
3. Strengthen version control and audit trails
The HR team regularly modifies files and the slightest mismatch of data can cause issues when it comes to version changes and audit control. If changes are made to digital copies, annotations can state exactly why and when changes were made to the original version. If regulators or inspectors have any questions, they are quick and easy to resolve.
4. Reduce search times
When paper records are manually filed, they can be difficult to find again. Human error means that misfiling can occur. Digitization enables documents to be found easily with a few keystrokes and accessed almost immediately.
In the digitization process, digital files are indexed by implementing optical character recognition (OCR) to enable intelligent extraction of data. Indexed digital files are fully searchable when using the right software.
5. Gain additional space
The sheer volume of documents in the HR department can take up plenty of space. Files in filing cabinets use space that could be devoted to work-related activities. Digitization means that physical records can be stored offsite, freeing up a considerable amount of space for more productive use.
6. Simplify recruiting
HR management software can simplify the hiring process by automating the various phases of recruitment. It is possible to manage all the steps of the process efficiently and hire the best talent within a short space of time.
Companies are radically changing their hiring processes and experimenting with AI, social media and online games to digitize how they are recruiting, even using digital tools for their outplacement services. Voice command apps are being used by some companies to give answers to various HR questions about expenses, leave pay etc.
If you’re intimidated by the more radical ways in which to digitize your HR department, remember that it is always best to start simple and small. Look at various areas of your HR processes, such as payroll management, recruitment etc. and decide where digitization is most important. You can always begin in one area and implement it in other areas later.