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Cloud Boosts the Role of HR

In a traditional human resources department, hiring a new employee often means devoting hours on paper-based onboarding processes. In many cases, an HR manager actually sits down with the new employee to ensure the completion of these tasks.

Today, organizations like Brooks Brothers have the opportunity to do things differently.

At Brooks Brothers, when someone accepts a job, the company simply sends the new employee a link to an online version of new hire paperwork, complete with access to an employee portal and resources like FAQs and welcome videos. This reduced the typical first-day administrative process from hours to minutes, saving HR time and letting new employees hit the ground running.

Brooks Brothers isn’t unique in this streamlining of operations. We’re seeing it happen more and more, across the HR sector and business in general. What’s causing this?

The magic sauce is cloud computing.

The cloud has the potential to transform human resources, benefiting core back office functions like payroll, time and attendance, benefits, systems of record, recruiting, onboarding, and more. It allows organizations to move away from paper-based processes to cloud software. This isn’t only environmentally friendly, but cloud software also gets the job done faster, reducing admin time and boosting productivity.

Today’s cloud software is mobile-friendly, and designed with consumers in mind, as many people are expecting this same ease and simplicity in their workplace applications too. There are plenty of HR cloud software options available today, and the best ones combine the many functions of human resources into one central place, simplifying everything instantly. Software can include functions like tracking applications, searching resumes, generating reports, calculating payroll, tracking performance, maintaining data on current employees, etc. And this software will always remain up-to-date, with simple installation. Better yet, HR employees can have massive flexibility to access information and software from any device, anywhere, at any time.

With cloud software in place, a human resources team can better support, know and grow its employees by having access to data following the hiring process. You can think of this as “people analytics,” which can offer insight into employee turnover, performance, work preferences, trends and more. HR employees need to have the time to analyze this data and turn it into action, and cloud is freeing up the time necessary to do so.

With all this data on employees, you might be wondering, “Uh…but what about security?” It’s been proven time and time again that cloud providers tend to offer higher levels of both physical and network security than organizations can provide to themselves. Providers make massive investments in these tools and resources, benefitting all their clients. This means that HR data will remain safe, yet accessible to authorized users.

Of course, the cloud transition might require a shift in culture and expectations, but the long-term benefits are significant. A business will experience simpler technology, streamlined processes, and quicker responses to the needs of the organization. Cloud strategies, processes and technologies mean organizations can also accommodate the needs and expectations of an increasingly digitally inclined workforce. And along with these company-wide changes, cloud can reposition human resources as a true value contributor, rather than a department that simply supports other functions. Cloud computing will help HR increase its organizational impact and take on a larger role that will drive business goals. 

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