SumTotal Blog

Steve Parker (2 Posts)

Steve Parker

Steve is a former HR executive and a vice president at SumTotal Systems. Steve has developed his unique, cross-functional HR perspective from leading several strategic HR functions and initiatives for various organizations throughout his career, including Talent Acquisition, Performance Management & Leadership Development, Talent Management & Succession, and HR Operations.

5 Talent Technology Trends that Matter in 2014

So many talent technology “trends,” so little time. Wasn’t technology supposed to give us more time?

The rapid pace of technology development can make it difficult and time consuming to keep up with the latest and greatest and understand what’s really going to help you achieve your HR and talent management goals. To help (and give you back some of that mythical “time” you were promised) we’ve identified five HR technology trends that will really matter in 2014 and beyond.

    1. Global, Virtual Work – Reports of the death of “work from home” have been greatly exaggerated
      Virtual work is here to stay. Though some organizations (Yahoo, HP) made news last year by eliminating the work-from-home option, many others are increasing their virtual workforce. Benefits of supporting a virtual workforce include significant cost reduction ($11,000 per employee, per year), less absenteeism, and retention, as, according to PWC’s 2013 NextGen: A Global Generational Study, many employees would choose work flexibility over pay.
    2. Collaborative Productivity – More than social for social’s sake
      A 2012 McKinsey study found that implementing social, collaborative technology can increase productivity by 25% and those organizations that don’t are missing out on their piece of $1.3 trillion in untapped value. And just having a discussion forum doesn’t count.
    3. Context-Aware User Experience – Tools that people use because they want to
      Context-aware HR solutions deliver hyper-personalized information and recommendations that increase the productivity of every employee, where and when the employee needs it. So instead of one-size-fits-all learning or talent programs, your employees get a unique experience personalized to their needs, and managers get the in-context information and recommendations they need to better manage their teams. The result? People will actually USE your HR systems and programs – and not just because you make them. When adoption rises, so does productivity and ROI.
    4. Analytics – Big data doesn’t have to be complicated data
      Organizations that use workforce analytics to effectively leverage their workforce see higher quality, productivity, customer satisfaction and market share, according to a recent Harvard Business Review survey. Unfortunately, most organizations have employee data siloed in 3 or more HR systems, as well as other internal and external systems, making effective workforce analytics seem like an impossible dream. New technology is available now to help you solve this without the expense and risk that comes with HRIS consolidation projects. Just read the whitepaper.
    5. The Cloud – Still unsure? You’re not alone
      The Cloud – specifically the public Cloud or SaaS has been a strong trend for a few years now and will continue in the future. The potential cost savings, scalability and flexibility make it the right deployment choice for many. However, there are some organizations that aren’t ready for the public cloud yet for a variety of reasons.CedarCrestone found that less than 18% of HRMS deployments are in the cloud, so if you are still on the fence – you’re not the only one. If you aren’t ready yet, be sure that your HR solution provider offers a choice of deployment — public, private (hosted), a combination (hybrid) or on-premise. The choice should be yours, and your vendor should support your needs today and have the ability to adapt as your requirements change.


To learn more about each of the above trends, read “Cut Through the Noise: 5 Talent Technology Trends That Matter.”

HBR Study: Organizations get huge payoff from HR Analytics

Workforce analytics are essential business tools to measure and improve workforce performance. In fact, companies with advanced workforce analytics in place are three times more likely to lead their competition in customer satisfaction, quality and productivity. Those are the take-home messages of recent Harvard Business Review sponsored by SumTotal (download report). (more…)