Over the years, employee management has evolved from being a largely ancillary department to one of strategic importance for any organization, both in terms of effective engagement and optimized business processes. With the advent of new and emerging technologies, enterprises across industries are realising the pressing need to make the shift to digitized, automated operations in order to streamline operations across the board, and even HRM is no exception to this.
Given the increasing numbers of remote hires and/or remote projects that are taking place, digitized operations are imperative for a seamless connection between employee-employer to seamlessly execute the tasks at hand. With this in mind, the ideal model of implementation that organisations should follow is not one that enforces potentially intrusive/restrictive measures. Instead, it should be one that encourages and enables transparency between employers and employees by leveraging technology. Technology should serve as the tool for enterprises to finally walk the tightrope between ‘monitoring’ to ‘being engaged.’ Let us look into some of the ways in which technology is impacting and reshaping the entire employee management process:
Geo-tracking for enhanced security and employee efficiency:
Instead of needing the employee to be physically present in the same place to mark or manage their attendance, leave and other important communications, there are several apps that are enabling them to do so digitally. Therefore, employees can mark the beginning and end of their workday, as well as view and manage leave regardless of their location. It will be automatically recorded within a single integrated system, verified using features like geo-tagging and geo-fence restriction. Additionally, tasks can be monitored according to the time they should take and the time employees are actually taking for them, to better understand productivity levels and ensure that work is allocated accordingly.
Several popular technology-driven service applications such as those in the beauty and household domains are using their apps to track every move of their employees in real-time. The employee on-field simply uses their phone to mark the beginning of the task, where a one-time password is automatically deployed to the customer and has to be shared with the provider. Upon completion of the service, the same system is implemented to mark the ‘stop’ of the service. In addition to the service duration, employers can check the route, time and distance travelled to ensure not just the productivity of the employee but their safety as well.
Digital documentation, surveys and instant information:
With the rise of intelligent tools, HR teams are also able to better manage employees in remote locations and provide them with any relevant information via one-to-one chat and broadcast while on the go. Gone are the days when HR had to put together or request several documents to verify employee information and obtain feedback. Today’s advanced platforms ensure that all of this is done digitally, including surveys, and real-time performance reports backed by analytics tools.
Essentially it implies that enterprises no longer need to invest substantially in hiring resources to manually collect and analyse data and bear the risk of mistakes that might creep in. Furthermore, the number of man-hours and manpower that is wasted in maintaining and developing massive excel databases can be saved. Such efforts can be redirected towards more impactful and core activities.
Elevated employee engagement:
One of the biggest worries of employees all over the world at the moment is whether their current skill-sets are enough to help them keep their job, and flourish within the organization. While employees, thanks to the all-encompassing work shifts, have little to no scope for personal skill development, employers should come forward and fill this need gap. And they have been doing so, that too in the most engaging manner. Their allies in this journey? Technology.
As per TalentLMS’s 2019 ‘Gamification at Work’ survey, 89% of employees say gamification makes them feel more productive and happier (88%) at work. Even the big corporates are integrating employee engagement techniques with a greater frequency. For instance, IBM has experimented within its operational framework to drive new digital HR solutions. Among many other things, it has launched a digital learning platform that gives its employees an opportunity to learn various new-age skills at their own speed and convenience.
It is no secret that every change results in some sort of collateral damage, and mostly it’s the employees who are left in the lurch as enterprises try to adapt. However, rather than just viewing the current ‘tech-age’ as another moment that necessitates sacrifice, enterprises need to view it as a time to equip their existing teams to be future-ready and utilize all of its elements to promote the comprehensive development of each individual so that the collective is strengthened.
-- Mr. Udit Agarwal, Founder and CEO, TrackOlap