How to select an HRMS that will grow with your company

It’s difficult to imagine a company that sets out to shrink. Assuming that your organization is in the majority and is aiming to grow, expand and build its business, then you need an HRMS that will grow with you; that will meet your technology needs not only for the workforce you have today but well into the future. The key is to build your future into your initial system requirements and bear them in mind throughout the software selection process.

Modular is good

Usually, the larger the business, the more HR automation it will benefit from. This is especially important if you’re choosing your first HRMS. It’s common to start with the ‘entry level’ functions such as time and attendance, employee database, workforce planning and scheduling which will add some fundamental practical value from the start. Then, as you expand and as the use of HR technology becomes an integral and accepted part of your organizational culture, you can add more sophisticated functions such as payroll, onboarding and talent management. The difficulty is that systems that target the small business market often do a great job on these fundamentals but won’t grow with you. If you plan to grow, it’s worth exploring vendors with a plug-n-play approach to HRMS design.

Find the right HRMS for your company with this step-by-step HRMS selection survival guide

You’re scalable but is the software?

The most obvious sign of your growth is the size of your workforce. When you’re looking at systems, check out whether they have a limit to the number of employee records they can contain. Many will handle anything from 4 to 40,000 but others are more limited. This is where cloud systems often show an advantage – you don’t have to worry so much about hardware limitations and the commonly-used subscription pricing model operates on either a per user or per record basis: fully scalable.

Can you customize?

As you grow, as your branding evolves, as you diversify into new lines of business (requiring new skillsets and maybe even new team structures), as you open up multiple locations and premises, as your people procedures are redesigned to suit a larger organization, can your HRMS keep pace? Can you change the processes, notifications and outputs to suit a bigger and better business?

Self-service for the future

It’s particularly important that your self-service modes of access can grow with you. You may think you only need a basic access and update facility for individual personal records but in a technology-obsessed world, your workforce will soon be looking for full-on benefits enrollment, time off management, and access to developmental learning opportunities – all without leaving their workstation. As a basic principle, the more routine HR tasks your workforce can do for themselves, the more specialist HR resources you’re freeing up for more strategic and high-impact projects, such as transforming your talent management program, or bringing two workforces together in your latest merger or acquisition.

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Dave Foxall

About the author…

Dave has worked as HR Manager for the Ministry of Justice for a number of years, he now writes on a broad range of topics including jazz music, and, of course, the HRMS software market.

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Dave Foxall