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Why HR Needs Intelligent Technology

8 Jun 2015 by Jennifer Fernandez

85% of HR leaders plan to spend more on technology this year than they did in previous years.

The most intelligent people I’ve ever known have had a knack for taking the complex and delivering it to me at my level. Have you ever had the frustrating experience of asking someone to explain something to you in layman’s terms, but walked away feeling more confused than when you entered that conversation? To me, that’s not intelligent. And it certainly makes me feel unintelligent.

Luckily for me, I work with several intelligent professionals, and I have several advisors and mentors who are incredibly intelligent. What I’ve learned from them is that this ability is not a “knack,” as in, “These people were born with a gift.” They actually work quite hard at this skill — and it shows. These folks have many of the traits that the most successful technology developers employ.

So … what does “intelligent technology” mean to me in my field?  

It means simple. It means intuitive. It means data available at my fingertips, ready for consumption when I need it. 

In the world of HR, what does that mean to me?

It means focusing on important wellness issues, such as:

  • Wearable devices to help employees manage their health, and inspire them to do more.
  • Auto-renewals for pharmaceutical medications, which improve patient outcomes. Did you know that people have the worst outcomes when on a maintenance medication and they miss the renewal, and therefore stop taking the medication for a day or two?
  • Cost comparison tools, unveiling pricing structures for benefits providers and procedures — removing the complexity and intrigue in the healthcare industry for our busy employees.

It means focusing on engaging end users in a way they want to be engaged, when they want to be engaged, such as:

  • Live chat functionality for employees and employee spouses when they have an immediate need or concern
  • Single sign-on solutions, ensuring data is ready for consumption for employees without login requirements, password resets or Web address searching
  • Integrated human resources systems, complete with self-service and auto-routing for approvals and workflows

Most folks probably wouldn’t describe their HR department as technology-driven. But with 85% of HR leaders stating they plan to increase their technology budgets, it’s obvious that couldn’t be further from the truth.

As HR leaders, we have an opportunity to use intelligent technology to create a better culture for our clients — the employees who allow our organizations to function and grow.

Using technology to build a better workforce and culture? That’s intelligent.