Outlining your HR requirements - The foundation of your HRMS RFP

This first key step in developing an HRMS RFP is all about giving the potential vendor the context and base level HR requirements of your organisation; listed, prioritised and documented.

As part of putting together the original business case and/or scope document for the project, you’ll have conducted a comprehensive review of your HR processes and systems and drawn up a list of HR requirements you expect the HRMS to support. If you didn’t, do it now. It’s this review that forms the basis of the RFP; if you like, it’s your shopping list, itemising everything you want and hopefully you’ll find a vendor whose product will tick every box. Here are some areas of a potential HRMS and your current HR requirements for you to consider.

What HR requirements do you want or need your HRMS to handle?

The possibilities of the available technological support is fairly vast right now. You can automate your records management, time and attendance, learning management, recruitment and onboarding, analytics, talent management, payroll, etc. Pretty much any HR process will have a module somewhere that will put it on-screen and/or online.

Consider access to your HRMS

Ask yourself what do you expect and what would you like in terms of employee self-service and manager self-service. Do you just want people to be able to update their own personal details or will they be accessing work schedules from mobile devices, making online requests for time off, booking themselves on training courses (with automatic notifications to line managers and subsequent prompts for them to jointly complete pre-course preparation), do you hope to use the HRMS to leverage a whole new era of social collaboration in your corporate culture?

Recommended Reading: HRMS Vendor Guide - Shortlist HRMS vendors based on your HR requirements

Clarify the essential and desirable

It’s all possible. But there’s a caveat here: just because it’s possible and just because you can have it, does not necessarily mean you should. If you find yourself (or your project team or sponsors) getting over-enthusiastic, then pull back a step and prioritise the list of potential automated processes in terms of what will be business-critical over the next few years and what will be ‘nice-to-have’. In other words, you have two lists of criteria: essential and desirable. And it should be absolutely clear to the vendors, which is which.

Consider your current HRMS

By way of context you should also provide some details of your current HRMS if you have one – what levels of functionality you want to maintain and what you want to improve. For example, does your current system have difficulty integrating with other business intelligence systems; maybe it has limited capabilities when it comes to predictive analytics, or lacks mobile functionality, etc.

Just remember, whatever you’re asking for, you need to know how you’re going to measure and assess it when it’s placed in front of you – i.e. have a clear criteria evaluation system.

Provide the bigger picture

Finally, give the vendors the bigger picture, the wider context of what your business or organisation is all about – vision and purpose, key strategic goals, core markets or clients, your staff numbers (full-time, part-time, casual/contingent/agency etc.), any anticipated expansion projects in the next few years, any particular compliance areas when it comes to HR and people management…

If they understand you then the vendors should be able to present a system that will work for you; or to put it another way, they will really have no excuse not to.

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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