HRMS Implementation: Customization vs Configuration

There are many HRMS on the market today that can cater for the majority of HR requirements. Options are varied, from built to order or fully customizable systems through to locked down versions that depend on configurations during HRMS implementation to meet the business needs. Which option is best? Once again, it depends on what you need from an HRMS as well as your staffing model.

Customizable HRMS

A customizable HRMS is preferred where a company has specialized business processes, or would like to make a system as easy or user friendly as possible. For example, an HRMS may offer a page that allows for the tracking of work visas. The business may define that 10 of 12 fields are required by the company, but the application comes delivered with two required. An HRMS team may need to audit the data post entry for any missed fields. A company may also decide that a code adjustment is necessary and the cost of customizing the software during to make the additional fields required is justified based on the business cost of missing or auditing the data. Customization during HRMS implementation often requires more staff, such as analysts and developers for maintenance, as well as higher upgrade costs to analyze and potentially re-implement all of the customizations.

Configurable HRMS

A configurable HRMS, commonly seen in cloud systems, delivers business processes, data and entry pages, based on how the bulk of the companies might perform the process. Then, a layer exists to allow for configuration, such as adjusting a process or sometimes hiding fields. For example, a hire process may require data entry of personal and job data. A company can configure during HRMS implementation (or at a later date) to add a required visa page. Configuration could generate an email to an HR partner when an employee provides a non-US home address to trigger a review if a work permit is needed. While fewer developers are needed since the software source code may not have to be adjusted, more analysts may be needed to audit the data and to perform configuration. Such applications vary in the amount of configuration possible, and it may not always be to the field level or other exact requirements, such as in our customization visa example.

Both types of HRMS can be useful depending on your situation and in defining how to best meet user requirements in a cost-effective manner.

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Heather Batyski

About the author…

Heather is an experienced HRMS analyst, consultant and manager. Having worked for companies such as Deloitte, Franklin Templeton and Oracle, Heather has first-hand experience of many HRMS solutions including Peoplesoft and Workday.

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Heather Batyski