Q&A With HR Tech Influencer Laura Hamill
Chief People Officer and Chief Science Officer of the Limeade Institute
What area of the HR function will be most impacted by emerging technologies and why?
The emerging technologies in HR are moving in a really interesting direction — away from individual point solutions and into an integrated platform approach. What’s fascinating is how that corresponds to the breaking down of HR silos. No longer does each HR function have its own individual technology solution. Instead, there are integrated platforms that bring together multiple solutions. And I believe the CHRO will be impacted the most. These emerging technologies will force them to create more integrated people strategies. They will have to stop solving for specific HR functional needs but instead solve for the employee experience. This requires CHROs to be much more strategic and collaborative than perhaps they needed to be in the past.
Are there certain strategies that are more effective than others when it comes to getting your workforce to use new HR technologies being put in place?
There is a well-researched concept called Organizational Support Theory that I always draw on when I’m thinking about implementing anything new in an organization. It’s a simple idea — it’s about how the organization shows that it is supportive of employees — when organizations actively and authentically support their employees, they are more likely to demonstrate mutual commitment. So, before you launch a new HR technology, think about how you’ll support them and show that you authentically care about the topic in question. For example, if you are rolling out well-being software, it’s critical that managers, leaders and teams show that they care about the well-being of employees. The culture should support it –and you should communicate to employees that well-being is important to the success of the business. So really, no matter which direction employees turn, they feel their well-being is important. Doing the hard work and heavy lifting to make it real in your organization is the best strategy.
How is HR technology changing the way people work?
HR technology is changing the way people work because it’s helping to shape organizational culture. In the past, HR tech was only used for transactional purposes like PTO requests or paystub reviews. But today HR technology is delving into topics like engagement, inclusion, well-being, learning and development and strategy achievement and its starting to have a real impact on shaping the culture of organizations. What’s more, with the influx of remote workers and the increased frequency and ways in which we use technology at work, we are connecting with our companies more and more through technology and less through actual physical interactions. Many of these technologies are also customizable and allow for greater focus on company specific topics and initiatives. For these reasons, HR technology has a much bigger opportunity to help shape organizational culture.