Reinventing Human Resources by consumerizing tools
Published by: James Lee,
Many of the innovations we’re seeing in business technology stem from the rapid changes we’ve already witnessed in our personal lives. We’ve grown accustomed to services being on demand – we select a movie on Netflix, it plays immediately; we request an Uber home, it arrives within minutes; we order food on Postmates, or an item using Amazon’s Prime Now service, and it’s at our doorstep within the hour.
The workplace is increasingly multigenerational, with twenty-somethings introducing the slick user interface of apps like Snapchat along with expectations of a similar experience with other tools. To their credit, software developers have met expectations, with mobile and cloud technologies driving a complete reimagination of how we do business. Organizations in every sector are benefitting from, and seeking to take advantage of, new technologies and models coming from the consumer space, rather than in the enterprise sector. Classic examples are the cloudifying of Office 365, Skype for Business and enterprise instant messaging and collaboration via Slack.
Human Resources is something of a laggard in the adoption of consumer-grade technology. Despite being the part of the organization that interfaces with people, it’s also the part that’s most affected by slower, legacy systems and outdated processes. HR professionals are often working with heavily structured, less intuitive tools and information that lacks context while being tasked with keeping things steady instead of being instigators of change.
Well-being needs to be delivered as a holistic approach, covering physical, mental, social and financial wellness in one centralized place. A tech-driven approach puts the tools in the palm of the worker’s hand and allows each employee to customize their own experience with personally relevant benefits and well-being content designed to encourage incremental changes to behaviors. By consumerizing employee well-being, employees have the freedom to evaluate and choose their own benefits—using employer-provided dollars. It makes sense that the budget spent on the employees goes directly to benefitting them, and it does influence the bottom line. According to the Human Capital Management Institute, companies that invested just $1 per person in well-being initiatives outperformed their peers and experienced 11.7% productivity gain.