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Co-operation between HR and IT in 2020


We recently ran a live panel webinar exploring HR-IT collaboration in Scandinavia. This was the result of a survey and subsequent report we released back in March that focused on how IT professionals feel about HR in relation to their priorities, and about HR systems in general.

If you missed the live webinar, you can of course stream the recording for free on our website, but for those of you who just want to get straight to the key takeaways, this is the blog post for you.

An IT strategy for HR

We first looked at the importance of having an IT strategy for HR, and what effect that has on the HR-IT relationship. One of the findings in our report was that when there is a clear IT strategy for HR, there is a correlation with higher satisfaction with the collaboration overall.

While discussing this in more detail with our panel members, these key points emerged:

  • A clear HR-IT strategy aligns different departments with the need for a common source of data and automated processes.
  • In companies (like our guests from Sigma) that deal with significant turnover each year, automation and efficiency in on- and offboarding processes is highly important both from the HR and IT perspectives.
  • The adoption of new processes and technology is all about people, making HR the centre of digital transformation.
  • A clear IT strategy for HR helps non-technical people to navigate the digital transformation.

Access management and data security

Our report also found that 95% of IT professionals see system access control as highly important. Given that the data used for automation in granting and revoking access should ideally come from secure, well-maintained HR master data, the logic of HR-IT collaboration is clear. For example:

  • With the number of employees on- and offboarded every year, making sure that no-one has inappropriate access to data is vital. Integration and automation between HR master data and access management takes care of this.
  • GDPR compliance in handling salary and health data is not only about following rules; a breach could potentially result in major fines, and loss of ISO certifications and reputation.
  • When HR master data is not properly digitalised, or data sits across many different systems, access management becomes an unwieldy manual process prone to errors and vulnerable to breaches.

What we see is that data security and access management is becoming a very high priority when investing in HCM systems, and IT is increasingly involved in the buying processes of HR technology. Both HR and IT are important stakeholders in the selection process, making effective collaboration essential.

The impact of COVID-19 on IT and HR

It’s almost impossible to escape coronavirus talk these days, but in the case of HR systems and their ability to support both HR and IT during times of crisis, it is highly relevant to review what we’ve learned during this time. The key points our panel identified were:

  • Access to centralised, high quality employee data is crucial.
  • Constant control over the number of employees working full time, on reduced hours, on sick leave, and what their key competencies are, etc.
  • Reliable system support for effectively bringing people back to work when the time comes.

It is also, unfortunately, a reality that systems should be in place to support professional offboarding for those not returning to work.

What now?

Tom Olberg, ERP Advisor at Devoteam had this advice for businesses who want to take advantage of the knowledge and experiences gained in the past few months:

“Structure and increase the quality of your master data so that you are able to digitise your processes, move away from manual and ad-hoc manager support, and take advantage of technologies such as AI and Machine Learning, when you are ready for them.”

If you’d like to get into the details and data behind the webinar, you can download and read the full Scandinavian HR-IT Report 2020 below.

Zoë Harris

Zoë Harris, 01 July 2020

Zoë Harris is a content marketing specialist who has worked with companies across the Nordics and the world since moving from Australia in 2006. With a background in communication strategy, UX writing, creative writing, and copywriting/editing, she's inspired by the human stories that make each business or organisation unique.

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