Category Archives: Tools and Tech

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The business guide to sponsored content

The first printed advertisement in the US was published in The Boston News-Letter in 1704. Since then, advertisements have undergone significant transformation. From television adverts to the rise of influencers ads on social media, the nature of advertising is changing as the world becomes growingly digital.

As a result of these changes, traditional advertising methods such as print adverts or website banner advertising are becoming less effective. Instead, people seem to be drawn more to sponsored content, where advertisements look less like a traditional ad and more like natural editorial content. Research has shown that sponsored content that is educational or informational results in increased brand trust when compared to traditional advertising methods.

In this article, we are taking a deep-dive into sponsored content to provide you with a detailed business guide to sponsored content covering everything from what is sponsored content, to where to find it, how to create sponsored content, and how to improve the performance of content.

What is sponsored content?

Sponsored content is a form of advertising where the advertiser pays a publisher to create and distribute promotional content for them. However, the format of sponsored content, or native advertising, differs greatly from traditional advertising methods. While traditional advertisements are easy to spot due to their format, sponsored content will blend in with the natural existing content on the publisher platform.

For example, sponsored content in a print magazine may appear as a sponsored article or editorial-style advertorial that is consistent style to other non-sponsored articles throughout the magazine. However, a traditional print magazine would be easily recognized as a quarter, half or full-page advert that is an image or text advert promoting the brand.

Sponsored content is a popular form of marketing. By integrating sponsored content into your marketing strategy, you can take positive steps towards increasing brand credibility and, in turn, improving consumer feelings of trust. Sponsored content can also add to the user experience by complementing other published content on the platform, rather than disrupting it. Furthermore, sponsored content isn’t restricted to just one format. This allows you to have more flexibility and creativity with your paid media efforts.

Where can sponsored content be featured?

Sponsored content isn’t just limited to print publications such as newspapers and magazines. In fact, sponsored content can be found on almost any type of content platform. Social media, podcasts, magazines, blogs, television shows, and the radio are all examples of platforms that frequently feature sponsored content.

An example of sponsored content on social media would be an Instagram post by a social media influencer that is promoting a particular brand or product. This type of sponsored content will either be part of a paid sponsorship or an agreement between the advertiser and influencer where the advertiser provides a “free” product in exchange for a post.

In podcasts, you may recognize sponsored content when the podcast host talks about a product they have recently been enjoying and shares a discount code for the listener to try the product for themselves. Whilst this is a more obvious example of sponsored content, some types of sponsored content are less easy to recognize. One example of this would be sponsored content on a blog. Sponsored content on blogs will normally be a guest post by the sponsor, or an article that includes links to the advertisers website, or features their products, services, quotes or infographics in their article.

However, it is worth noting that while all sponsored content will feature a brand, not all brand features are sponsored content. It is normal for natural, non-sponsored content to also contain brand or product recommendations, updates or information.

How to spot sponsored content

If you’ve read an article, listened to a podcast, or watched a YouTube video and seen or heard the words “sponsored by”, “paid post”, “affiliated with” or “promoted”, it’s likely that you’re already familiar with sponsored content. These phrases are clear indicators that the content you are consuming is sponsored content.

Newspaper, magazine or blog articles that are sponsored may also be prefaced with the tag of “advertorial” or “sponsored”. Meanwhile, in sponsored social media content by influencers, you may recognize sponsored content by the use of “ad” or “#ad” in the post caption or video title.

However, sometimes it isn’t that easy to tell if the content you’re consuming is part of a paid-for advertisement. Other things to look out for when trying to identify whether something is sponsored content include:

  • Author name – Check whether the article has been written by the company or an employee of the company
  • Links within digital content – Look for links within digital content that direct readers to the brand website or products
  • Product placement within content – Does a product feature in the article, television show or content you’re consuming? If so, this could be part of sponsored content
  • Brand mentions within content – Check if the content includes brand mentions, surveys by the brand, or quotes from the business employees

By being aware of the different elements of sponsored content, you will be more able to identify sponsored content when you’re next reading a magazine, catching up on a podcast, watching a television show or scrolling through social media. Although, it is important to note that organic content can also sometimes include brand mentions and links.

Advice for creating Sponsored Content for your business

Sponsored content can often be better received by consumers than traditional advertisement due to being less intrusive or obnoxious. Therefore, you may want to consider incorporating sponsored advertising into your wider marketing strategy. If you are thinking about creating sponsored content for your business, there are several steps you can take to make sure you get the most out of your paid media.

The first thing you want to do when planning sponsored content as part of your marketing strategy is to make sure that you align with publications, influencers and content platforms that are representative of your brand and target audience. By distributing your sponsored content on platforms that are in-line with your target audience and your brand values, you will be able to increase the authenticity and credibility of your sponsored content.

Although sponsored content may look more natural than traditional advertising, it is still a form of advertising. So, it is still important that you follow Federal Trade Commission (FTC) guidelines for online advertising and marketing. These guidelines include advice on how to effectively disclose native adverts so as to not deceive your audience.

You should also make sure that your sponsored content aligns with your wider marketing strategy and campaigns. Establishing a cross-platform marketing strategy is great for building brand awareness. By marketing a single message across several platforms you will also make sure that you are making contact with potential customers at every stage of their buyer journey, allowing you to stay fresh in their mind while strengthening trust and affinity.

When it comes to creating your sponsored content, make sure you create engaging content that captures the audiences’ attention. While you don’t want your content to look like “clickbait” or be intrusive, you don’t want it to stand out enough that people stop to read or watch your content. Take time to think about what headline, visuals or topics your target audience will be interested in and use these insights to drive your sponsored content creation.

Sponsored content isn’t just sponsored articles or in-feed native advertisements. If you are looking to deliver maximum impact with your sponsored advertising, then go beyond written content. As mentioned earlier, sponsored content can be delivered in a wide range of formats and across multiple platforms, such as videos, podcasts, radio and social media. Research states that 78% of podcast listeners approve of podcast sponsorships due to the understanding that those sponsorships fund the content they value. Further to this, many listeners also report finding podcast adverts memorable and motivating.

So, if you are looking to deliver sponsored content for your business, you should first develop a sponsored content strategy. Doing so will ensure you get the best results out of your sponsored content.

How to evaluate Sponsored Content performance

Analyzing the performance of sponsored content can be difficult if you don’t know what to focus on. The performance metrics for sponsored content will vary depending on the method and platform used. For instance, the metrics used to analyze the success of sponsored content in a magazine will differ from the metrics used when analyzing the performance of sponsored content on social media.

Therefore, when delivering sponsored content campaigns, you should first determine what metrics you need to analyze to determine campaign success. If your sponsored content campaign includes distributing content on online publications or blogs, your performance analysis may include a report of the number of backlinks gained and the Domain Authority of those linking sites.

For sponsored content that provides a link through to your website, you may also want to analyze your site traffic and conversions during this period. Using UTM tags for your campaign URLs, unique URLs or discount codes can be a good way to determine which site traffic and conversions have come directly from your sponsored content.

Other metrics that can be important when determining the success of sponsored content, especially across social media platforms, include brand sentiment, likes, engagement rate, follower count and reach.

We’re sure that the popularity of sponsored content will continue to grow. So, if you are looking to build trust and authenticity through your advertisements, you may want to consider using sponsored content within your marketing strategy. However, it is important to make sure you are following FTC guidelines and ensuring that your sponsored content provides value to your target audience.


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Are You Ready for Digitization? An HR Checklist for Small Businesses

Digitization is a word on everyone’s lips. Today, more than ever, organizations are rapidly digitizing, as work-from-home and flex work protocols create a huge need for flexible, digital operations and infrastructure. 68% of organizations are moving to implement digital operational processes, which greatly change how people work. 

While digitization hugely impacts organizations, often offering cost-savings, reduced time investment from employees, and better customer service, it also means big change. Digital transitions are periods of intense change and stress.

Many employees will resist that change, and you may find resistance to be highest at the top. Implementing a successful HR program to ease the digitization process is critical to ensuring that digitization is a success, and that your organization moves through it with your greatest resource – the employees – still in place. 

This HR checklist for small businesses will help you determine if you’re ready to start digitization or if you still have work to do. 

Get Everyone Onboard 

Most small organizations can quickly and easily identify leadership, which consists of founders, managers, and team leads. In some cases, you also want to look at key people such as individuals who are looked up to, top performers, or individuals who otherwise drive their team. The advantage in small businesses is that everyone is close together and you can likely easily identify who will and will not make a difference.

McKinsey & Company identifies having leadership on board as one of the most important aspects of a successful digital transformation. If the people in charge, or the people driving the organization, are hyped about something, everyone else will get behind it too. But, small companies don’t really work that way. Everyone is working side by side, and chances are, you wouldn’t want to keep a big decision secret from everyone until you have time to convert leadership, even if you could. 

Here, it’s a good idea to deliver information to everyone as part of the decision-making process. Depending on the stakeholders and owners, this can take one of several routes, but should normally include: 

  • Reasons for the change 
  • What changes will be made
  • Who will be impacted 
  • How it will affect those people 
  • What jobs (if any) will be made redundant and what opportunities are 
  • What new roles will open up 

Involving your team as part of a decision is a powerful way to get them onboard and engaged, because they are part of the process from the start. That allows you to deliver the value proposition to the employee before the decision is pitched as final, so that everyone can pitch in and be involved.

Most importantly, if everyone knows what’s happening, who’s affected, and what their options are to stay with the company, you’ll reduce issues relating to churn as employees leave the company while anticipating being let go. 

Build a Strong Connection Between Digitization and Goals 

Digitization is often an important and necessary step for the organizations adopting it. No one decides to go through expensive and “traumatic” changes to business processes and solutions for nothing. Every digitization effort you put into place links to a real and tangible business goal. Share these goals and share how new tools help the organization to improve, compete in its market, reduce costs, and improve the employee experience.

Here, it may be a good idea to share projected benefits to reductions in manual data entry, cost reductions, improvements in Co2 footprint, or how digitization might make some jobs easier and more efficient, freeing people up to add value with their time. 

Update Processes to Incorporate Digital 

Any digitization project must include a comprehensive digitization of the organization. The processes people use to work must be updated to not only mention digital but incorporate it completely. Processes must be worked into the tooling, so that most people naturally follow process just by using the tools. 

Deliver Training for New Digital Programs 

Moving to digital tools can be an extreme change for some. HR can support this change by identifying how and where people need training and delivering that training before rollout finishes. Some training programs might include: 

  • Using software 
  • How new digital processes work 
  • How automated processes work 
  • Cybersecurity and password protection 
  • Using new hardware 

People have to know how to use new programs before they can work on them effectively. Teams should have a strong understanding of basic usage of any new software before it’s delivered, with opportunities to improve learning.

It’s also important to ensure that everyone understands what’s going on. Switching from manually approving accounts payable to automating most steps can be confusing to people in charge.

Automating digital document backups can be confusing for people accustomed to making paper copies. Ensuring that everyone is aware of what’s going on and has the tools to understand the technologies in place is critical for driving value with new solutions. 

Create a Digitization Team 

Most organizations will need some time to fully digitize. This can involve identifying processes for digitization, improving those processes, and then automating them.

It can also involve digitizing hundreds of thousands of paper records, creating new storage solutions, identifying bottlenecks and issues resulting from new technical demands, and making changes to prioritization as the organization’s needs become more apparent.

Most small organizations should create a cross-functional digitization team composed of HR, IT, and Operations, with people capable of making decisions, changing implementation, and managing the process. And, if you do have to scan and back up thousands of documents, you need a team in place to manage that as well. 

Involve Key People in Decisions and Developing Change 

Most people are well aware of what they need and how to improve their work. We hire experts to do work because they are experts. Yet, many digitization projects “talk down” to experts, forcing new solutions on them with little to no input.

Involving key people in decisions relating to software options, online storage, cloud tools, VPN, and other solutions can greatly streamline the digitization process, because people are empowered and involved. If people know that they are choosing a solution to improve their work, they are engaged and not just planning to adopt, but eager to do so. 

While this sort of hands on approach to digitization requires that leadership be on board with it, it can greatly improve the whole process. Why? Involving employees is one of the most powerful things you can do to shift mindsets away from “digitization is replacing workers” to “digitization is aiding workers”. 

Digital transformations can greatly change how and where an organization works. Digitization can enable your organization to seamlessly work from home with secure VPN connections and virtual computers.

It can automate print processes, so your organization goes paperless, greatly changing the work of accounts payable and payrolling. It can automate sales processes, integrating sales, finance, and marketing onto a single platform.

Whatever it does, it will bring change, and managing that change is critical to ensuring a successful transition. Remaining open, communicating clear expectations, offering alternatives, delivering training, and building trust in new processes are some of the most important roles of HR during a transition.


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Impact of Information Technology on Human Resource Management

This is a guest post from Asma Niaz. Asma is an Academic writer at Zoe Talent Solutions and loves to write stellar content on various educational topics, programs, trainings and courses. Zoetalentsolutions is a premium teaching division, which offers highly professional hr courses to excel at your workplace.

Published 7/12/17. Edited 1/16/20.

Nowadays, entrepreneurs with business acumen have acknowledged the power of information technology (IT) tools for reaching business targets. It not only helps achieve the business goals but also optimizes the work processes.

Human Resource Management (HRM) includes activities such as recruiting, training, developing and rewarding people in the organization. HRM must aim at achieving competitiveness in the field of HR by providing constant educational and training programs for the personal and professional development of the employees of the organization.

It has been conventionally proved that Information and Communication Technology (ICT), such as the Internet, mobile communication, new media, and such in HR can greatly contribute to the fulfillment of personnel policies of the organization. Technological advancement can have a huge impact on the HR department of an organization. It allows the company to improve its internal processes, core competencies, relevant markets and organizational structure as a whole.

Human Resource must mainly be focused on the strategic objectives of the organization. These strategies must be led to incorporate an IT strategic plan for the organization. These are activities related to any development in the technological systems of the entity, such as product design (research and development) and IT systems.

Technology development is an important activity for the innovation process within the business, and may include acquired knowledge. In the context, all activities may have some technical content, and results in greater technological advancement.

Information Technology may have a greater impact on organizations that exist in a dynamic environment. This will lead to greater efficiency and effectiveness of the Human Resources.  Hence, utilizing IT application for database management and advances recruitment system will increase the efficiency of the business.

However, innovation in Human Resource Management can manifest itself in a number of ways:

  1. To identify solutions quickly and flexibly during a negotiation
  2. To identify new ideas for products and services
  3. To identify new markets

Innovations such as these are supplemented with Information Technology to create a positive impact in HR. Rosabeth Moss Kanter, one of the leading management theorists of her time, argued that the re-birth and success of business organizations will depend upon innovation (developing new products, introducing new services, and operating methods), entrepreneurship (taking business risks) and inclusive management (encouraging all employees to participate in making decisions about work).

Information and Communication Technology (ICT) can make the following major impacts in Human Resource Management.

1. Better services to line managers

Both HR and line managers primary interest is the success of the business. The human resource’s main function is to support the workforce needs of the organization. Strategic planning between HR and line managers is important for reviewing projections concerning future business demands to determine whether to train current employees, to prepare them for promotion or to recruit candidates with the higher level of skills to supplement the current employee knowledge database. Training and developing the line managers in IT tools will, therefore, prepare the line managers for a number of leadership tasks.

2. Enhancing management

Human Resource IT tools that can supplement management and enhance efficiency and effectiveness, which can lead to the success of the organization as a whole. For example, currently, SuccessFactors Solutions has developed an HR IT tool of talent management for Hilton Worldwide, which had a worldwide operational capacity. Organizations across the world are driving to improve organizational performance regardless of the size of the organization or the industry. Managers within the organization measure performance, sometimes by comparing it against a benchmark. They analyze and assess their findings and design their controls accordingly to advance the organization’s performance.

According to the Gallup survey, engaging your employees to organizational goals is the key feature of every business. The management should also ensure that all departments are improving its procedures and controls and targeting its activities on better achieving the company’s competitive differentiation through what the employees do and how they are doing it. These can be better utilized by customized HR IT tools according to the organization.

3. Effective recruiting

Nowadays, organizations have realized that effective recruiting cannot be done without the use of IT. Organizations now use job portals on the internet to search for the best candidates for the position. The process has been made effective with the use of the internet as many people come to know of the offer and hence increases the probability of hiring efficient employees.

Employers can present all necessary information related to job, careers and personal development of each employee on portals online. This is a great promotional tool for the organization. Currently, Envoy has developed Asana, an IT tool for recruiting that analyzes details down to where a potential candidate’s high priority values are. The HR IT tools not only help hire the best potential but also retain it.

4. Data management and critical analysis

Data management becomes easier when IT is used and it becomes paper-free. Many of the monotonous work is no longer manual. This increases the efficiency of the work and the effectiveness of it. Organizational performance can lead to the timely success of the business whether in a stable or an unstable environment. Jobs that do not offer much variety in their performance and are of a highly repetitive nature are disliked by employees and eventually results in low retention or decreased effectiveness.

Employee’s performance data can be critically analyzed by the HR IT tools more often if it’s online and becomes readily accessible to everyone. For instance, Zenefits has recently developed an HR IT tool, which has made Passport completely paperless. The tool is further hierarchy sensitive and pings the manager for approval once it is submitted. Thus letting an individual get rid of the hassle of filling the paperwork. Thus by developing this HR IT tool, Zenefits has helped Passport radically simplify and manage its HR internal processes.

5. Inventory management tools and human resource management

Entrepreneurs with business acumen describe that the performance of an organization can be made more effective and efficient by customer intimacy, operational efficiency, and leading edge. Customer needs must be met by customization and by providing outstanding customer instances. For this purpose, organizations use HR IT tools to provide a universal set of products and diversify the business by providing improved products and services.

6. Cost-reduction and efficiency

Considerable benefit can be obtained as various reports can be made using IT tools.

Xero wanted to save its resources and make them easier to manage. Xero then implemented PlanSource’s benefits system and ACA compliance technology with their payroll provider and now all their benefits are in one place and easy to access. This lead to cost reduction and efficient and work processes. Johnson, Scholes and Whittington have rightly said, “Poor performance might be the result of an inappropriate configuration for the situation or inconsistency between structure, processes, and relationships.” Organizational performance can be increased by implementing management by objectives and using a participative style of management through Human Resource Information Technology tools. The management of an organization is accountable to the owners of the business for the performance and the achievements of the organization. Managers can perform well and justify their authority only if they produce the desired economic results, for instance, the profits they have desired to achieve in a period of time. Management often uses the Operation’s Research to maximize the profit, yield, utilization and the performance. The management of an organization usually creates a measurement system to set targets for change and measure organizational performance.

7. Customer service and human resource management

Organization performance can also be described by evaluating the reliability of service and by understanding the quality of customers of the organization. Value can come from providing a reliable service, so that the customers know that they will receive the service on time, at the promised time, to a good standard of performance. As organizational change is inevitable, critical success factors and key performance indicators should be revised, and relevant Human Resource IT tool must be devised for the better quality of work.  Doing good quality work and providing quality results will increase organizational performance.

8. Career development and human capital management

The career planning tool is a learning and knowledge-based system that helps successful businessman around the world to manage their personal development and career paths along with those of their employees. Performance evaluation and career progression can be a key motivating factor for the employees to work effectively and efficiently. Performance measurement and reward systems in an organization establish views of priority i.e. what is important and what is not so important. Thus sound performance evaluation systems HR IT tool is crucial for the organization. The system must be a sound one so that people can rely on it. Rewards systems should be amended so that the rewards to managers and other employees are based on performance targets as stored in the HR IT tools. Employees should be rewarded for performance based on the desired behavior and results as per the HR IT tool database. Also, according to Vroom, one of the best management theorists of his time, instrumentality (rewards system) affects motivation for the increase in organizational performance. Managers must keep their promises that they have given of rewards for performance and try to make sure that the employees believe that the management will keep its promises. However, performance targets do not usually have to be financial targets. They can be in other forms such as recognition, promotion etc.

One of the major processes of HR is the Human Resource Development core process. This HR tool provides all information about the employee’s succession planning, evaluation of overall performance and the review of individual potential including the employee’s detailed profile. It also includes an agreement between the individual and the supervisor on business targets over a period of time periodically. Thus leading to a continuous development of the employee’s career. The great advantage of this tool is that data once entered into the system is stored in the database and can be attained in the future. This leads to considerable cost saving as well. Recently, Standard Life Group provided HR resource cost optimization tool to Oracle Human Capital Management Solutions. It is further contributing to the strategic transformation of the company by building the empowered workforce. Employees need feedback about their performance. Employees need to be communicated about their actual performance and their expected performance. In this way, they will know their own performance level within the organization. Bonus must be kept for employees who work overtime and provide efficient results. This HR IT management tool incorporates all such data.

According to the survey of 37 companies in Turkey applying IT in HRM, the employees expressed that their business environment satisfies them and they work efficiently. The survey confirms that these  companies use HR IT tools and should contain all HR processes which will sustain all parts of HR it means from ”Recruit to Retire” functions within the company.

Human Resource IT tools have great organizational effects; provide better services to line managers, serve as a pipeline connecting a personal policy and personal processes in all organization, facilitate personnel management in the company, provide important data for a strategic personal decision-making and enable a quick acquiring and analysis of information for HR assistants and reduce cost labors at performance of personal activities.

Globalization makes us realize how IT can contribute to the fulfillment of business strategy in the frame of Human Resources management in order to direct the business towards quality and to reach the competitiveness in the market. Research reveals that information technology sustains reaching the HR goals moderately and the precise plan of implementation of HR information system can significantly support HR strategy in the company to attain defined key performance indicators (KPI). This should mainly contain what has to be achieved. It means how he HR IT tools can support the KPI and which kind of HR IT tools should sustain.

The following was added 1/16/20.

9. Automation of HR processes

Human resource management is an incredibly complex domain that involves many processes. And it often happens that HR specialists spend too much of their precious time on mundane, monotonous activities instead of focusing on more serious issues.

The implementation of technology into the HR workflow frees the professionals from a great amount of routine work. The automation of processes eliminates paperwork, speeds up the execution of many tasks, and contributes to more efficient HR performance.

The advancement of technology means companies can use the latest innovations, such as machine learning to screen resumes and augmented reality to onboard new employees.

It is important to remember though that the whole HRM domain is impossible without people. A lot depends on the empathy and experience of an HR specialist, but the deployment of technology can significantly improve the quality of work of a single specialist.

10. Availability of HR tools

Some time ago, HR specialists struggled with endless phone calls, emails, and paperwork. They had to keep dozens of processes and tasks in mind. Now, there are hundreds of available HR tools that are designed specifically to facilitate and optimize the work of HR specialists.

The features of the HR software include:

  • Streamlining workflows
  • Organization and management of employee data
  • Creation of detailed employee records
  • Social collaboration
  • Management of payroll, vacation, and bonuses

The transition to a digital working environment enables modern HR specialists to perform certain tasks in a faster way and thus, pay more attention to such issues as the satisfaction of the employees, optimization of the recruiting and onboarding processes, employee motivation, etc.

11. Advanced candidate search

One of the main responsibilities of an HR specialist is finding and recruiting the specialists that a company needs at the moment. IT significantly changed the way these processes are approached.

First, the Internet granted HR specialists an opportunity to search for candidates worldwide. Freelance workers have now become a common thing, and collaboration with freelancers may be even more beneficial than hiring an in-house team. There are numerous benefits of working with freelancers: flexibility, affordable rates, specific skillset, and many more. In this way, HR specialists can fill the gap that their in-house team lacks and find a perfect candidate anywhere in the world.

Second, HR specialists can use advanced tools (i.e. Artificial Intelligence) to screen the resumes and pay attention only to those profiles that strictly match the requirements. This greatly speeds up the search process and helps to find the most suitable candidates.

Finally, HR specialists now have access to various online platforms where they can find candidates: Stack Overflow for developers, Quora for managerial positions, etc. The availability of such resources expands the talent pool and grants HR specialists new opportunities in terms of the candidate search.

12. A new way to brand a company

Company branding is an important factor in attracting and retaining employees. Thanks to IT, companies now have an option to build strong online presence and reach numerous potential candidates with minimal effort.

Thorough website branding and design, presence on major marketplaces and online communication – all these factors promote direct interaction between a candidate or employee and a company.

Social media plays a huge role in the company’s branding, too. Social platforms became the key source of information, and candidates are most likely to search for a company on LinkedIn than through traditional sources. Hence, companies should consider what kind of image they would like to build and what values and messages they want to transfer to the users.

Finally, don’t forget the mobile business applications. A mobile application is an amazing way to redesign a company’s brand in accordance with the demands and interests of a target audience, and add interactivity to it.

IT has greatly expanded not only the talent pool but also the way HR specialists can reach top talent and promote the company online.

13. Analytics grants access to more data

Finally, Information Technology granted HR specialists access to sophisticated analytics, taking their work to a new level.

Previously, HR specialists had to rely on guesswork and intuition when evaluating the employees, their level of motivation and satisfaction, and the efficiency of HR processes. Now, they can rely on the data and see all the processes and work results reflected in numbers.

With the help of analytics, HR professionals can track down the candidate’s journey and see at which point most people reject (or accept) an offer, how many people are involved in the processes, what percent of employees open their emails, and many other important events.

In this way, HR specialists can make data-driven decisions and use past experience as a base to redesign and optimize current processes.


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3 Ways Technology Can Help You Scale HR Efforts with a Lean Team

Many HR teams build exemplary recruitment and management processes, only to lose them as their organization begins to grow. Developing any sort of sustainable team requires creating sustainable results that scale with your organizations and your team. Anything your HR team accomplishes must easily scale, allowing your team to keep up even through massive growth spurts, performance review, and during recruitment phases.

Technology offers solutions to help you scale HR efforts, without greatly expanding your team or adding too much work and complexity. These three ways HR can help you scale will get you started on your way to designing HR processes in a way that makes sense for now and for the long-term.

Introducing an HR Portal or Platform

Managing employee onboarding, keeping individuals up-to-date with processes and policy change, and ensuring information is available and easily accessible to employees is time-consuming. A digital platform or portal is one easy solution that makes your HR efforts significantly more saleable. In most cases, you can integrate an HR portal into other service delivery such as work processes, documentation, and team management.

An HR portal should include:

  • Basic HR information such as work-hours, opening times, office locations, contact and so on
  • Individual user profiles
  • Company policy (Vacation, Contract, Healthcare, etc.)
  • Contract information
  • Development options and opportunities
  • Career path information
  • Application portal for time off, sick days, etc.

You may also want to include information such as team structures, frequently asked questions, tools used in the organization, easy contacts to IT, IT support, and so on in your portal.

Why? Creating a single portal with everything the average employee needs to navigate your organization, make decisions, and submit requests to HR – without requiring manual assistance.

Self-service greatly improves the accessibility of these services as well, because anyone can access them without waiting for someone from HR to have free time. You will, however, have to invest in a strong onboarding program that includes teaching every individual how to use the portal.

Automating Processes

From onboarding to logging payment data, HR can greatly benefit from automating processes. Here, you can typically determine what to automate by simply reviewing where you’re spending time on repetitive tasks like data entry.

If you’re using the same formulas for calculations, filling in the same data, or otherwise fulfilling a repetitive task, chances are, you could automate it. Automation allows you to speed up tasks, cutting man-hours, and freeing up HR for more value-added tasks.

While you should retain a manual review of any document or process, automation will allow you to scale much more quickly without adding on team members.

Digitally Analyzing Data

Many processes can be sped up and improved by simple digitization. Doing so will allow you to manage processes more quickly and easily, while reacting and sharing information across your organization.

Some processes that greatly benefit from full or partial digitization include performance review and management, employee onboarding, development and development reimbursement, transfers and promotions, actions such as discipline or demotion, and so on.

Keeping records of data online, managing it through a digital portal, and collecting it digitally will save time and money for your HR team.

Outsourcing HR Assessments

Scaling a business is tough enough, but as you grow you’ll have to learn how to hire rapidly and intelligently. Here’s where assessment technology comes in.

HR pros can use assessments to quickly determine which candidates are good fits for a job, based on past role performance. By creating benchmarks from your top performers, you can use assessments to quickly and accurately pinpoint future top employees who would be fully capable and fulfilled in the role you’re hiring for.

Investing in the right tools and technology will help your HR team to scale with your organization, without growing beyond scope or budget.


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