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Curbing Complexity: Six Ways to Increase HR Efficiency

The nature of HR is changing and it’s more important than ever to give HR departments the tools needed for success. As noted by the Harvard Business Review (HBR), 50 percent of human resource leaders highlighted the challenge of digital skills gaps in 2019, but the last year and a half has “changed the playing field.” HR staff are now busier than ever, trying to juggle both new and old responsibilities as they navigate the next normal of remote and hybrid work.

The result? It boils down to a shift from complicated HR problems to complex ones. While complicated problems are familiar to staff and can be solved using traditional methods of linear thinking, complex challenges require an entirely new approach — one that requires communication and collaboration at an unprecedented scale.

Tackling this challenge requires increased efficiency from HR departments to ensure employees are properly nurtured and prepared to navigate this new normal. Not sure where to start? Here are six ways to streamline HR operations.

1. Reduce office noise

Simple is often the best starting point. Reducing overall office noise leaves fewer distractions, making it easier for staff to focus. Current conditions are more supportive of this endeavor since most offices aren’t back to full strength, but it’s also worth creating a framework that will help keep noise levels down even as more staff return. While this looks different for every office, common approaches include specifying set quiet hours, keeping mobile notifications and reminders on vibrate and setting aside dedicated spaces for longer conversations.

2. Increase staff options

As noted by Forbes, companies like Facebook, Amazon and Google are now embracing hybrid models that allow staff to split their time between remote and in-person work; recent survey data shows that this approach leads to increased staff productivity. 

For HR teams to experience the same benefit, however, they need tools capable of synchronizing and streamlining documents, processes and signatures across the organization — no matter where employees are located. Implementing an HR automation solution is a low-cost way to keep teams connected and ensure processes aren’t affected by your business’ office model. And with many companies also adopting flexible work schedules that shift away from traditional 9-5 models, automated workflows can help HR teams connect with staff even when schedules don’t match up.

3. Adopt HR automation

For many HR teams, the sheer volume of digital paperwork to complete, items to approve and issues to follow-up on leaves them with little time to engage with employees. Here, HR automation plays a critical role in improving efficiency. By automating time-consuming tasks such as PTO requests, benefits enrollment and tax documentation, HR teams can focus on what matters most: Staff.

4. Improve operational compliance

Evolving compliance regulations — including HIPAA, FERPA, SOC2, CCPA and GDPR to name a few — can significantly reduce HR efficiency. Time that HR members could be spending on improving employee experience instead shifts to document double-checking and compliance reviews to reduce the risk of regulatory missteps. To manage this challenge, many organizations are now hiring dedicated compliance staff, but even they can’t do it all alone; software solutions with built-in compliance tracking and notifications can help streamline the way paperwork is collected to create a hands-off approach to compliance.

5. Fast-track forms completion

One of the biggest efficiency issues for HR teams? Forms. From vacation and sick leave requests to payroll documents and employee evaluations, vital workplace forms often require more time than they should from HR member’s schedules. Form automation tools can help fast-track completion by empowering staff to create mobile-friendly, dynamically fillable forms that can capture digital signatures and reduce the risk of lost or misplaced physical documents. And with automated notifications, both HR teams and staff members tasked with forms completion can track progress every step of the way. 

6. Enhance onboarding operations

A simplistic onboarding process is crucial in helping employees settle in and find their bearings in new work environments — and the faster employees get up to speed, the better for HR efficiency. But with many new hires now recruited, interviewed and offered jobs entirely online, the onboarding process has become significantly more difficult. 

Here’s why: For many employees, the bulk of their first few days are focused on completing the paperwork required to set up benefit accounts, create payroll system logins, obtain keycards or identification badges and certify that they understand and will abide by business codes of conduct. Even in person this process can be complicated — at a distance, it becomes complex. Here, automated workflow and document tracking can help HR teams boost onboarding efficiency. Employees can easily access and complete digital forms anywhere, anytime while HR staff can track completion status, follow-up on specific items and ensure all relevant data is captured and securely stored. 

 

OnTask: Helping HR teams become more efficient

The last year-and-a-half makes it clear: For HR, there’s no going back. To navigate the next, new normal — and whatever comes after — teams need new ways to eliminate common roadblocks, handle complex challenges and maximize human resource efficiency. OnTask’s workflow automation solutions solve many of the challenges modern day HR departments face. Automate the paperwork that keeps your business going and keep your employees connected with OnTask.

Schedule a free demo today to see how OnTask can automate your workplace.