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Will Hutton

Will Hutton

Principal, Hertford College, Oxford University and chair of the Big Innovation Centre

Tuesday 17 Jan 2012
HR transformation – what can you achieve if you think afresh

HR transformation – what can you achieve if you think afresh

As we enter a new year full of opportunities and challenges, will the HR glass be half full or half empty? One area in which HR can make huge strides through implementing HR transformational solutions.

What does it mean?

HR transformation solutions mean fundamentally changing the way a business interacts with its people. Often, this involves letting your people do more for themselves, so getting rid of the transactional 'noise' from around your business. It means making your managers responsible and accountable, helping them make a difference with their own people by giving them the tools to do the job.

HR transformations that involve substantial IT change (and most of them should) also have the added bonus of stopping IT departments from constantly placing HR at the bottom of their list of priorities. It really doesn't cost tens of millions to buy new technology, particularly when it is a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solution, which can be used by your people to make a real difference.

Why should you do it?

In the current economic client, further increased pressure on cutting costs means that things can no longer been done as they used to be in the past - it simply is no longer an option.

This offers the opportunity to review processes and old ways of working. After all, when was the last time you really looked at the end-to-end process around your people?

Underpinned by great technology, top suppliers can take the heat away for driving real business process improvements and standards.

And by outsourcing, you also outsource the pains of changing business structure, and therefore have much more room to manoeuvre - to acquire, divest, grow or shrink.

What can you expect at the end?

HR transformational solutions will provide you with flexibility - the ability to make decisions and implement them faster.

They reduce administration. Top ones will lessen the administrative burden on managers by up to 80 per cent.

HR transformational solutions provide visibility - pertinent information which you require to enable you to make the right decisions.

They deliver control - reducing staff churn and improving payroll accuracy through both reduced internal costs and reduced payments.

And in the current tough economic climate, they lower costs - directly and indirectly through delivering innovative solutions such as salary sacrifice, time and attendance, workforce and performance management.

What value does it add?

One of our clients would have needed to increase revenues by six per cent to achieve equivalent value delivered while for another the percentage increase would have been approaching ten per cent.

Implementation 'unlocks' future growth scenarios for management to consider without the need for additional capital investment. The money saved can then be focused on frontline areas.

HR transformation allows HR to define some of its value very clearly - driving HR to demonstrate clearly the added value it brings to organisations.

Jeremy Campbell

Chief People Officer

Ceridian UK