Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
(Editor’s Note: Today’s article is brought to you by our friends at i-Sight, a leading provider of case management solutions that helps companies manage the process and workflow of investigators collecting and analyzing information related to a case, with the goal of resolving issues, managing risk, and identifying opportunities for improvement. Enjoy the read!)
We hear the term “getting back to basics” quite often and we’re hearing it a lot lately. Regular readers of HR Bartender know that I’m a fan of consulting the dictionary, so I did a quick search to see what “getting back to basics” means. The Collins Dictionary defines it as “concentrating on simple, important ideas or activities.”Getting back to basics can be an opportunity to refocus and streamline. It can be ways to deliver great work with fewer steps. To become more proactive, especially if the organization feels they have been very reactive lately. Getting back to basics can help us spend time on things that are directly aligned with the business.
The reason I’m bringing this up is because now is a great time to evaluate HR compliance processes. If we step back for a second, let’s look at what’s going on right now.
From a business perspective, organizations are redefining the customer experience. I’m not saying that’s bad. But companies are trying to set new expectations with customers.
I’m hearing an increasing number of people talk about spending some or all their time back in the office. Even employees who are 100% remote are talking about going in for special company events. So not only are companies setting new expectations with customers, but they’re setting new expectations with employees. While we’re going through this reset, it only makes sense to examine the way we’re doing things in HR.
Resetting Expectations Can Increase Productivity
I ran across an article in Harvard Business Review that said the average company loses 21% of its productive power in time-wasting interactions. Even though the article is a few years old, I’m not sure that the statement is a surprise. How much time is HR spending on paperwork, administration, and compliance that could be utilized somewhere else?
The good news is that technology tools can help HR departments get back to basics. For example, here are three compliance areas that case management software can support.
COMPLIANCE WORKFLOWS. One of the most important aspects of HR compliance is just remembering everything. There are so many laws, with unique reporting requirements. Case management software provides HR departments with the compliance information they need and alerts to make sure they stick to reporting deadlines.
CONFIDENTIAL REPORTING. In a survey conducted by the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence, nearly one in four people felt pressured to do things they know are wrong. This could be anything from a rule violation to lying to an unhealthy work environment. Not only does this open the organization up to risk, it’s just wrong. Case management software can provide organizations with a place for employees to express their concerns, through easy-to-use reporting mechanisms.
CONSISTENT DOCUMENTATION. While HR departments need to be prepared to conduct investigations and document concerns, it’s not something they do all the time (hopefully). That’s why it’s important to have a consistent documentation process in place. Case management software can help HR departments document incidents consistently and evaluate organizational risk.
The HR Benefits of Case Management Software
At the beginning of this article, I mentioned getting back to basics. That’s what I believe the benefit of case management software is for HR departments – deliver great work with fewer steps. Case management software has the forms and workflows ready for us when we need them. We can deliver compliance without extra steps and feel confident that we’re not missing anything.
A technology partner can guide us toward becoming more proactive. This might sound a bit counterintuitive but hear me out. One of the challenges that HR departments have with receiving reports of employee concerns is not getting them. Employees are sometimes reluctant to come to HR. An online confidential reporting system can give employees a way to express an initial concern. Then HR and the employee can figure out how to connect in person. Having a way for employees to come to HR without walking into the HR office – at least initially – could be a relief for an employee. And it allows HR to deal with concerns before they get out of control.
Finally, having a software solution helps with investigations and employee concerns, and allows HR to focus on activities like recruitment, engagement, and retention. Things a software program can’t do.
Let Technology Do What It Does Well
One of the things I’ve learned over the year is just because I can do something, it doesn’t mean I should. Sometimes it’s not the best use of my time and effort.
The same idea applies here. Can HR departments do compliance? Sure. But, with all the other things on our plate, is that the best way to spend your time? Hmmm…I don’t think so. Which is why now – when everyone is resetting expectations – it’s time for HR to get back to basics and reset how they’re going to do compliance.
Case management software can help HR departments spend their time on activities that have a stronger alignment to the business and the bottom-line. If you want to learn more about case management software, request a demo from our friends at i-Sight and download their buyer’s guide.
P.S. Speaking of stronger organizational alignment, I’m excited to be partnering with i-Sight on a webinar about the “5 Ways to Increase Employee Trust for Less Turnover and Fewer Incidents”. The date is Wednesday, June 29, 2022, at 2p Eastern. And as always, if you’re already booked that day, sign up anyway and get the recording. It’s going to be an interesting discussion.30