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March 20, 2012

HR Departments Play an Important Role in Technology Adoption



Trends like social media, mobility, clouds and analytics are forcing companies to reassess many of their policies. As a result, companies are relying increasingly on their HR departments to both develop policies and procedures and focus on acquiring and training talented workers who can easily use technology.

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Deloitte Consulting has prepared a report entitled, “Human Capital Trends 2012: Leap Ahead,” which focuses on how HR departments need to evolve their strategies to help companies incorporate technology. “The confluence of transformative technologies requires HR organizations to step up and help build the capabilities needed to effectively harness their power,” notes Barbara Adachi, national managing director of Deloitte's (News - Alert) Human Capital practice and co-author of the report.

Fewer than 15 percent of executives believe that social media is a fad. Many companies are utilizing their HR portals as social platforms for organizational communication. With social media tools, HR can create platforms for both knowledge sharing and employee support. To disseminate HR-related company news, for instance, HR workers can post news onto a company social media site that workers can easily access with their smartphones from any location. Employees with a benefits question, for instance, could participate in or start a social media thread instead of dialing into a call center.

Cloud computing is also changing the face of HR. Since systems and data are stored off-premises and accessed via Internet, old ideas about time-to-value, service levels and infrastructure have changed drastically. This means that workers have to deal with an accelerated rate of change throughout the organization as well as a transformation in the nature of work. HR employees also play a crucial role in helping organizations to both acquire and develop talent that understands cloud computing.

“In this emerging cloud services environment, HR has a responsibility to help the organization adjust its people and processes to operate more effectively,” the report points out. “HR is uniquely positioned to do this—not just because HR is responsible for the overall talent agenda, but also because many HR organizations learned valuable lessons as early cloud adopters.”

Analytics concerning people-related issues will also be important for HR to harness going forward. Using both sales forecasts and analytics concerning current talent levels, organizations will be able to forecast their talent needs. “In 2012, HR organizations and businesses will require a combination of human capital investments to drive breakthrough performance,” says Michael Gretczko, a principal at Deloitte Consulting LLP and co-author of the report.






Edited by Jennifer Russell
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