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A new year comes with plenty of opportunities. You may be planning to make some big changes in your organization this year. What could you do better? Is it time to update some strategies?

Download "HRIS: The Who, What, When, Why, and How" Guide

It may be time to retire your current human resource information system (HRIS) provider. Whether you’ve outgrown the services the provider offers, or you’ve grown dissatisfied with the value you’re receiving for the cost of the software, it’s time to move on.

If you’re planning to make a switch in 2019, though, make sure you implement these five best practices. They can make the change much smoother.

1. Decide What You Need in an HRIS

Does your HRIS fit your current needs? You may have determined you need upgraded or more advanced capabilities. A new strategy may mean you need to adopt new technology.

Whatever the case, you need to decide what you actually want and need in your new human resource information system. Before you decide to switch providers, map out the specifications for the new system. Knowing what you want and need will make shopping for a new provider much easier.

2. Consider Configuration over Customization

Customization is a buzzword in many circles right now, from customer service to the tech industry. It’s even made its way into the HR department as organizations look to offer personalized benefits and customized onboarding experiences.

One place you may not want customization, however, is in your HRIS. In most cases, a configurable software will provide better results. Customized software can be slow and expensive. Configurable software, on the other hand, can be adjusted to meet your needs without the lag time of customized solutions.

Keep in mind that there likely isn’t a “perfect” solution out there for your company’s unique needs. At least, there isn’t one that’s perfect straight out of the box. Configurable solutions will give you the control you need.

3. Get a Demonstration

Before you sign on the dotted line for any service or product, you should ask for a demonstration to see how it could work for your business. You may want to have demos of several solutions from different providers.

Demonstrations can help you get a feel for the product and how it could adapt to your environment. The key to effective demonstrations is having the right people present. The people at the demonstration should be those who will use the HRIS on a day-to-day basis.

The attendees should also be ready to ask the right questions. Ask about the system’s capabilities. Be wary if the provider says certain capabilities will be added during the next release or similarly sidesteps a question.

4. Compare and Evaluate Your Options

Once you’ve done the research, including attending presentations and demonstrations, it’s time to make a decision. You’ll want to carefully compare your options. Be sure to evaluate them on intangibles such as customer service and value as much as their price points and system functionalities.

Take your time. If you switch too hastily, you may find yourself looking to switch providers again mid-way through the year.

5. Create an Implementation Plan

These days, it’s usually quick and easy to switch HRIS providers. If you’re already using a system, your data and information can usually be ported over to the new system with relative ease.

You may encounter some more complications when you consider the human factor. Your employees may not understand how to use the new HRIS or they may be reluctant to change.

Help them warm up to the new HRIS by providing them with support and training. It will go a long way to smoothing the implementation process.

hris-the-who-what-when-why-and-how

Lisa Curic

Lisa Curic

Lisa brings almost 30 years of experience to her role as the executive vice president at GroupQuest Benefits Resources Inc. She has worked for several different insurance businesses and co-founded a group benefits MGA in 2006. Lisa’s dedication and hard work has played a significant role in growing GroupQuest from two to over 40 employees in less than 10 years, and in making it one of the largest group benefit MGAs in Canada. Outside of her busy work schedule, Lisa enjoys reading, travelling, working out, cooking, and spending time with her husband and two children.

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