Q&A with HR Tech Influencer Jon Ingham


Jon Ingham
Consultant and author


What area of the HR function will be most impacted by emerging technologies, and why?

Technology can absolutely be a game changer but the biggest shifts are generally down to new strategic opportunities, enabled by technology. So I’d point to the move from human to social capital, or individuals to groups, teams and networks which I think is the biggest shift in how organizations work. The emerging technology aspect of this is embedding HR into collaborative technologies (especially Slack, Workplace, etc) and embedding collaboration into HR systems. I know this isn’t that new, but both are increasingly being enabled by AI and new (for most organizations) tools like organization network analysis (ONA) too.

How can HR leaders best make the business case for HR technology investment?

I’d encourage organisations to focus on making a strategic case rather than trying to estimate a potential ROI. Technology is becoming so important that it is often about what the business needs to do strategically, not just about financial results. Also ROI tends to miss the most important aspects of both technology and people management. And thirdly, technology often has the greatest benefit from its integration into business and people management strategy, not just through its independent impact. The strategic case is about linking technology investments to HR activities, the people outcomes of these, and then to planned business results.

How is HR technology changing the way people work?

versa, and it is often difficult to distinguish the direction of causation between these. By making people the central focus of business, people management has been moving from basic levels of value, supporting the business, to becoming a real contributor to strategic success. Linked to this, technology has been moving from providing information for line management and HR to including tools like apps, platforms, chatbots, and AI augmentation. These liberate people (and groups), helping them develop their own effectiveness and having a better working life.