Four Ways HR Automation Can Help Your Business Stay Lean During COVID-19

Growth-oriented companies are on a mission to build something new or disrupt the old ways with bright innovative solutions. These businesses are used to running lean in order to achieve the next phase of growth. During the COVID19 pandemic, they need to make every dollar count more than ever.  HR automation can help business owners protect the business and position it for a faster rebound in growth when this crisis has passed.

Engage and Retain the Workforce with HCM Automation

One of the top concerns of today’s business leaders is whether their organizations have the right people in place to meet and exceed business objectives. In fact, a recent study by PwC revealed 80% of CEOs worry a lack of essential skills threatens their company’s ability to grow. Small businesses tend to lean heavily on their best people, so losing a key employee can be extremely disruptive.

Finding and recruiting exceptional talent can be difficult enough, but it is only half the battle. Smaller businesses must engage every employee fully for maximum productivity and reward them in ways that improve retention. Human Capital Management (HCM) technology can strengthen and add value to people management processes from the first stage of an employee’s recruitment to the final exit interview.

HCM drives the data analytics that growth businesses need to predict talent needs, improve recruitment and retention, develop good compensation plans, and administer employee benefits. It also infuses the automation and proven processes to nurture engagement, train and develop talent, and objectively assess and manage employee performance.

Read More: The Guide To Streamlining Your Payroll Process

Time and Attendance Automation Keeps Labor Costs in Check

Within smaller businesses, it may seem easy to track employee attendance and hours worked using paper time sheets. But as the pandemic continues, more employees are working remotely or working unusual schedules or fewer hours. In these uncertain times, paper-based time and attendance tracking could become less reliable.

Lack of tracking creates opportunities for fraud and abuse, as employees slide into the office late or leave early, confident that no one keeps score. Individual instances seem like minor infractions, but multiplied across a growing workforce, the cost adds up. 

Automated, cloud-based time and attendance automation helps growth businesses reduce administration, enhance accountability, analyze trends, improve scheduling, and avoid compliance risks associated with inadequate timekeeping records. Mobile access better supports the digital, distributed workforce and biometric security features guard against time theft and manipulation. Improving time and attendance can also increase employee satisfaction by reducing scheduling conflicts, ensuring adequate staffing coverage, and making it easier to request time off.

Payroll and Tax Automation Reduces the Complexity of Compliance 

One of the biggest concerns of most small business leaders during the COVID19 emergency will be getting employees paid. A survey last year revealed 74% of employees would find it “somewhat difficult” or “very difficult” to meet financial obligations if their next paycheck were delayed by even one week. 

Federal financial relief programs like the Paycheck Protection Program are trying to help smaller companies retain their staff until the pandemic recedes. Some small business loans and financial stimulus will require businesses to provide payroll records and calculate average payrolls.

Payroll must be accurate, complete and timely. Anything less erodes employee motivation, damages trust, and causes unnecessary financial stress. 

Payroll and tax compliance often present a serious challenge to many smaller businesses. Rules for recordkeeping and reporting change frequently, and as businesses grow, their compliance requirements change. Over the past few years, there have been several important changes to both federal and state wage and hour laws, including the treatment of paid sick leave and paid time off. Noncompliant businesses can incur costly penalties and fines. 

Payroll and tax solutions improve accuracy and timeliness of paychecks, tax deposits and reporting. Automating the essential payroll and tax function allows companies to shed the burden of payroll administration and monitoring ever-changing compliance regulations. 

Strategic Outsourcing Lets Leaders Stay Focused on Business Priorities

Most small businesses lack a full-time HR professional on staff. In many smaller companies, the owner/CEO/president assumes the HR role while also handling accounting and payroll and leading the company. Right now, small business leaders need to focus all of their attention on navigating changing government shut-down rules, shifting consumer behavior, and the evolving economic uncertainty. 

Technology investment isn’t the only way for small business owners and CEOs to make more time to concentrate on priorities. Strategic outsourcing can leverage external expertise and proven business processes to avoid compliance missteps and support growth. 

Lean businesses can source cost-effective, high-performing outside consultants to help with any workforce-related function, from creating employee policies to talent management to employer compliance. Expert outsourcing firms already possess HR technology infrastructure and business processes to scale with and support rapid business growth.  

Human capital management is about more than software. It’s about people, processes and tools that help businesses reach their maximum potential. Business leaders can leverage HR automation and strategic outsourcing to retain and engage their most essential people while running companies as lean as possible until a better business environment reemerges.

Read More: 6 Key Trends and Statistics to Drive Your Recruitment Strategies

COVID-19data analyticsHCMPaycheck Protection ProgramPayroll and tax
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