One of the common reasons why organizations switch to new HR technology is to allow employees to view, validate and update their own information on a web portal. Most organizations provide self-service to employees for benefit selection, viewing company policies, and accessing training programs and information.
Vacation time requests, access to online pay statements and tax forms, schedule information and shift trades, and updates to dependent information are some of the other reasons that organizations are providing online access to their employees.
As written in our previous article about the three pillars of employee management, the relationship employees have with their managers, the organization (peers and policies), and the systems they work with, can provide a basis for gauging how satisfied or happy an employee will be in the workplace.
Whether you have a system in place or are considering implementing one, here are 6 ways that employee self service can help employees feel more engaged:
1. Time Management: One of the most important features of employee and manager self-service is the ability to capture time at the source of the work when it occurs. This provides accurate information for planning and costing purposes. It also eliminates the double entry that may currently occur in payroll.
2. Better Planning: Measuring time for tasks has another advantage – accurate measures of what it takes to perform certain kinds of work. This enables employees to give accurate estimates for project budgets and timelines. Delivering on accurate estimates creates accountability and helps in better planning overall for the organization.
3. Process Improvements: Understanding how people work can assist in improving processes to get the best results. For example, some times of day are better for collaborative work than others, having meetings early in the morning may be better than late in the afternoon, or certain resources may be better suited for peak hours of customer support than others. Such insights help managers to better plan their days and which resources should be used at different times so as to maintain performance standards and continuously improve business processes.
4. Organizational Efficiency: Getting paper based time cards signed and approved or maintaining excel sheets for time and task management is not ideal. Being able to request online approvals on timecards, vacation requests, and training requests through a central system allows employees to reduce the time they put towards administrative tasks. Organizations can gain insights from the data collected and analyze the impact training and vacation time can have on productivity without the hassle of manual data verification.
5. Performance and Feedback: Using systems to record feedback and track goals allows both employees and managers to change the way they work. Employees can record how they are putting efforts towards achieving organizational goals and if needed, get advice and input from their manager by initiating an online request. Such transparency not only reduces the fear of the annual performance review but also allows employees to feel engaged and have a better relationship with their managers and the organization throughout the year.
6. HR Becomes More Strategic: When HR is able to get away from everyday administrative tasks and service requests from employees, they can spend time in more strategic ways and bring insights that can help the organization reach its goals.
Many employee management articles talk about empowering and engaging employees so that they feel connected to the organization. Employee self-service can be a great tool to help with employee management and engagement while providing productivity improvements in fundamental HR processes.
If you are seeking ways in which you can create a more engaged workforce at your organization and want to get practical tips then download our Employee Engagement eBook.
About the Author:
Marnie Larson is the CEO of StarGarden Corporation and oversees its operations in Canada, US and New Zealand. She has over 20 years’ experience in the software industry and specializes in HCM, Business process automation and Workflow technology.