3 Surprisingly Common HRMS Data Myths

Data is the backbone of any HRMS, it acts as fuel to provide input into processes and analytics and is needed for the HRMS to be able to function. Looking back, what surprisingly common myths have been established about the fuel of HR systems, our HRMS data?

More Data Is Always Better

Too often, there is a push during HRMS implementation to use all system functionality, even if there is no business reason to justify it. Often, longer term maintenance then suffers as we loaded data without strong business processes, and we’re left with too much. This gets in the way of finding the useful data, as well as tarnishing the reputation of the system. As a rule of thumb, you should have a business reason to hold each piece of data, such as it being an input into a process or for audit reasons, otherwise, it’s merely HRMS clutter.

It Is Essential to Keep Data under All Circumstances

Have you ever had the experience during an upgrade of asking if we can leave old system data behind? How many of us have designed archive solutions or ported old data into our brand new system, just in case? In those situations, how many of you have ever actually referenced that old data after the fact? While there is a tax basis to hold payroll data due to audit reasons, tracking someone’s pager number in the HRMS 10 years after the company discontinued the use of pagers is probably irrelevant. While we may need to store benefit data over a defined period for costing purposes, 20 years’ worth of benefit data is probably not useful to anyone.

If You Build It, They Will Come

Does your organization have a diverse system landscape with an HRMS plus a myriad of other systems used by other business groups such as Finance, IT, Facilities, etc.? Often, other groups need to maintain employee data, such as a Finance system needs employee data to generate expenses. Then, these systems continue to build up in functionality, so much so that you end up with a shadow HRMS, because it was easier than trying to build an integration or because they were unaware that the data already exists in the HRMS. It requires strong leadership and partnership with other groups to ensure that the HRMS is the source system for HRMS data.

Effective data use is the foundation of any HRMS and keeping data clean, relevant and with an organized data model will go far in ensuring that your HRMS is a success.

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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