3 Steps to Optimizing Your HCM Tech Stack

March 8, 2022 | Shannon Shoemaker

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed human resources forever—including how we use human capital management (HCM) technology to continue optimizing processes. Back in 2020, work norms changed overnight, but we’re still acclimating to the long-term effects of those changes. In fact, only 37% of respondents to PwC’s 2022 HR Tech Survey have actually implemented a plan for monitoring productivity and performance in a remote workplace.

And remote work isn’t the only change the pandemic accelerated. The Great Resignation continues to rage. There’s also been a greater shift to contract work and more emphasis on protecting mental health and avoiding burnout, says Ward Christman, Ecosystem Navigator at HR Tech Advisor. Using your HCM tech stack to its fullest capabilities can help you address these challenges.

Here are three steps you can take to optimize your HCM tech stack to keep up with the workplace’s evolution.


Articulate Your Business Goals

To make your tech stack work for you in a targeted way, you first need to define what your goals are. “The technology is supposed to support the needs of the business,” says Christine Peters, Director of People Operations and Consulting at Willory. Set clear goals for your HCM processes before looking at your software options.

If hiring is your No. 1 priority, then you probably need HCM tech optimized to speed up the hiring process while improving the candidate experience. With that goal in mind, review your current technology to find points where you can improve how you use your tech to better those processes.

An effective background screening software, for example, cuts down time-to-hire—a crucial metric in the new economy. If your hiring process is too slow, you’ll lose top talent to competitors with better integrations and faster processes. An effective integration triggers the background screening at a specific point in the process and collects the necessary information automatically to populate your applicant tracking system (ATS), speeding up the process.


Reach Out to Your Current Vendor

Most HCM software programs have far more capabilities than employers typically implement—or even know about. “Far too often, clients don’t speak with their tech providers,” Peters says. “It’s a huge investment to not be maximizing.”

Reach out to your vendor partners. Consider setting up a monthly (or at least quarterly) check-in to find out about updates, share concerns or simply ask questions about functionality. And as your processes evolve, these touchpoints give you opportunities to explore features you hadn’t previously activated.


Implement Integrations

Human capital management relies on a variety of data-driven tools. Simple integrations can make a significant difference in optimizing your processes. “If you’re still doing manual data entry in multiple places, there’s probably an opportunity to optimize there,” Peters says.

You can leverage relationships with current vendors to find other tools that integrate seamlessly with your HCM tech stack.

“Work with vendors that you like,” Christman says. “Ask them for referrals to other technology players.” Your vendors may have preferred partners in their network who can solve additional challenges your primary system can’t. Getting a referral from your current vendor ensures that any new programs you add will be easier to integrate into your current tech stack.

To optimize your HCM tech stack, you have to know what you need—and what you already have, Christman says. Human capital management technology is constantly evolving, opening endless opportunities for optimization. Build relationships with your vendors to tap into those opportunities.

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