HR Technology Q & A with Tim Sackett

The 2016 HR Technology Conference is October 4-7. Over the next week The SHRM Blog will feature a Q & A series with several HR technology experts who will offer their perspective on how technology is impacting the HR profession today -- and their predictions for the future.
The following is a Q & A with Tim Sacket, President of HRU Technical Resources:
Q. Which new type of HR technology is most revolutionizing the HR profession? 
The TA Technology space has been exploding over the past couple of years. The tech surrounding candidate engagement and communication is some of the coolest stuff I've seen. Most companies are calling this 'Artificial Intelligence' but the reality is less sexy than the marketing, but leaps and bounds better than anything we've had previously. Technology can now easily keep you engaged with great talent until you have the need to tap them on the shoulder and deliver just in time hires. Something our hiring managers have always wanted from us! 
Q. What is the single most important piece of technology an HR pro can have in 2016? 
I want to say a phone and email is the single most important piece of tech HR must have, but I think that's now a given. So, I'll go with a core system of record (HRIS) and an ATS. Money is no longer a factor to have this technology and it's the foundation of your HR Tech Stack. There's great tech on the market that is super cheap and will raise your HR game up to a new level. 
Q. What advice do you have for HR professionals that will help to ensure a more successful technology implementation? Where are most mistakes made?
First off HR and TA leaders need to stop trying to 'customize' every piece of technology to their own processes. Very smart people spent millions of dollars developing software that works. As soon as you ask for a customization you just broke that software and it now no longer works like it was designed to work. Give up your processes and follow the processes of the technology you bought in the way it was designed. Most implementations fail because HR and TA first didn't ensure user adoption amongst themselves before rolling it to the rest of the organization. 
Q. What important questions should HR professionals ask HR technology vendors in the selection process?
Give me three references - one who is a long term user of your product, one who is currently going through implementation, and one who recently left you for another product. 
You want to talk to all three of these groups. People who love them, people who are going through the pain of implementation and people who no longer love them. This will give you a true picture of what you're really going to get yourself into. 
Q. Now that everyone is using HR technology to find and manage employees, how can organizations use technology to attract them?
When I speak to most HR or TA leaders about who their best hires are they will always tell me the same thing, "Referrals!" When I ask them who their highest quality hires are they will say the same thing, "Referrals!" 
When I ask them how much they spend on technology to help them get more of their #1 kind of hires, it's also almost always the same answer, "Zero." 
Employee referral automation is probably the least used, most valuable technology purchase you can make. 
The SHRM Blog does not accept solicitation for guest posts.

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