Streamlining HR Processes: The Power of Effective HR Integration

February 16, 2024
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Streamlining HR Processes: The Power of Effective HR Integration

Time-consuming, manual tasks are a total time-suck. Research from Zapier found that streamlining these tasks can save HR teams eight hours per week.

HR integration is a key example of how streamlining and automating your HR processes can unlock big wins. Moving away from low-quality, inaccurate data kept in difficult-to-access silos, to a streamlined system where data is integrated and instantly accessible is made possible by these kinds of integrations. 

When it comes to choosing the best types of HR system integration for your company, there are a few different options. We’ve broken down everything to need to know, from the key components, to how to maximise efficiency and overcome common challenges. 

Unleashing the Potential of HR Integration: A Comprehensive Guide

Ready to know more about how to unleash the power of HR integration? Here’s our comprehensive guide — with everything you need to know. 

Step 1: Understanding the Basics of HR Integration

First of all — what is HR integration anyway? Simply put, it’s the process of combining all the HR data, systems, and processes within a company into one efficient system. For example, for some companies, HR integration includes connecting applications like your Human Resources Information System (HRIS) or Human Resource Management System (HRMS) to third-party applications or other internal applications used within your company. 

Other companies might focus on creating an employee portal that integrates with existing HR systems and processes. When employees want to request time off or update their personal information, they can do this within the portal, and their details are automatically updated across all other systems at the same time. 

The main reason for HR integration is that modern businesses are moving away from siloed information that can’t flow freely from one department to another. Instead, HR integration allows all departments to access all the information, all the time.  

Step 2: Identifying the Key Components of HR Integration

There are three key components of HR integration: 

  • Data integration: this involves centralising the data contained within a range of sources into a single platform. This approach helps ensure data is stored securely and remains accurate because there aren’t multiple different places it can be stored. 
  • System integration: this involves integrating any systems used for HR purposes, including HRIS, performance management platforms, payroll, and more.
  • Process integration: this involves creating standardised processes for specific HR procedures across a company, for example, onboarding, performance reviews, and manager on-on-ones. This boosts consistency, fairness, and transparency by ensuring all employees experience the same type of treatment. 

Maximizing Efficiency: The Benefits of HR Integration

From improving the accuracy of data to saving time and ensuring your HR team can make informed decisions — there’s plenty to like about HR integration. Here are three of our favourite benefits. 

Enhancing Data Accuracy and Consistency

Accurate, consistent data should be the cornerstone of any HR decisions. But if your data is scattered across a wide range of systems, it can take time to know where to look. Unifying your data using HR integrations means everything is consistently updated and stored in one place. This not only makes it easier to find what you need but also reduces the chances of any errors creeping in. 

Choosing an integrated system also makes it easier to maintain compliance with regulations like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). 

Streamlining HR Processes

We’ve already discovered that HR professionals can end up spending a huge amount of time on manual tasks. But HR integration helps free up their time for more important tasks — those that require a human touch.

Standardised workflows mean HR processes can be completed more quickly and efficiently. For example, rather than spend time manually updating your HRIS with each new employee’s details, integration ensures their details are carried over from your recruiting platform, and then on to wherever else they’re needed. 

Using integrated processes for managing employee administration tasks like submitting requests for paid time off, confirming pension contributions or updating their details not only empowers employees to manage their data but saves your HR team a significant amount of time. 

Facilitating Better Decision Making

Want to make better business decisions? HR integration can help with that! Having all your data in one place means you’ve got a holistic overview, making it easier to uncover insights, identify patterns, and analyse trends. And that makes it far easier to make informed decisions based on detailed insights, not guesswork.

Integration also means it's much easier to align strategic objectives with overarching company goals. For example, with employee engagement, performance, and retention data all in one place, it’s far easier to track key metrics, identify trends, and develop initiatives to improve any metrics falling below your targets. 

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Overcoming the Challenges of HR Integration

As with any new business initiative, there can be a few challenges when integrating your HR systems, processes, and data. To help you out, we’ve identified a few of the most common and their potential solutions. 

Challenge: Data security concerns 

Solution: consolidating sensitive employee information onto a new platform needs a careful approach. Ensure that any providers you’re working with adhere to relevant data protection regulations, like GDPR in Europe. Security measures like encryption, regular security audits, and controlled access can help protect your data. Look for a platform that takes data protection seriously — like Figures. We’re not only GDPR and SOC2 compliant, but we’re also the first European compensation management platform to be ISO 27001 accredited (that’s the highest information security management system standards, by the way). 

Challenge: Integration complexity

Solution: Transitioning multiple legacy systems to one, integrated system can be complex. And sometimes, it might seem easier to keep doing what’s always been done. This kind of mindset can, unfortunately, delay HR integration, or stop it entirely. Instead, a better solution is to approach the integration process by breaking it down into smaller, more manageable steps. Working with an integration specialist is another way to remove complexity and make the process run smoothly. 

Challenge: Resistance to change 

Solution: Acknowledge that resistance to change — from at least some employees — is inevitable. The first step in overcoming this resistance is identifying where that resistance is coming from. Is it coming from C-suite leaders, managers, or employees? Then, find out the underlying reasons. Is it because C-suite leaders don’t have a clear understanding of exactly how much of their HR team’s time is spent collating data from different sources, or because they’re concerned about the budget that will be required? Or are employees worried that they’re going to have to learn their way around a new portal? 

Once the source, and reason, for any resistance have been identified, clear communication is needed to address any concerns. Whether that’s providing proof of the potential return on investment to leadership, or creating training and support materials for employees. Addressing any concerns proactively can help make the process of integration a lot smoother, and get buy-in from employees at all levels.  

Challenge: Vendor collaboration issues

Solution: Trying to coordinate multiple platforms and third-party providers can create roadblocks and collaboration issues. It’s worth assigning a project manager to oversee this process and maintain regular communication with all parties. 

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Exploring Different Types of HR Integration

Ready to know more about each type of HR integration and its benefits? Let’s go! 

HR Data Integration

Integrating HR data involves removing silos by centralising multiple data sources into a single platform. This approach can not only improve accuracy and security but saves a significant amount of HR time because everything is easily found, in one place. 

The benefits of HR data integration include:

  • Ensures data accuracy and consistency
  • Enhances the employee experience 
  • Saves time usually spent on manual tasks 
  • Allows for easy reporting and analytics
  • Provides data for informed decisions 
  • Meets regulatory requirements

HR System Integration

Integrating HR systems involves ensuring all HR processes are connected so that data can flow between them. This often includes integrating compensation management software with your HRIS system.

For example, Figures integrates with a wide range of systems, including:

  • HR platforms like Workday and People HR. 
  • HRIS including Factorial, NMBRS, Personio, and Salary. 
  • Equity management platforms like Ledgy. 

The benefits of HR systems integration include:

  • Streamlines processes
  • Enhances the employee experience 
  • Reduces time spent on labour-intensive, manual HR tasks 
  • Provides detailed data for decision-making 

HR Process Integration

Integrating HR processes involves first identifying, and then standardising, all HR processes across a company. For example, rather than each manager being responsible for conducting performance reviews for their team using their checklist or system, everyone uses the same process.

The benefits of HR process integration include:

  • Boosts fairness and transparency 
  • Ensures a standard process is used for all employees
  • Improves collaboration across departments 
  • Increases efficiency 

Case Study: Successful HR Integration in Practice

When healthcare tech company Lifen was looking to streamline its HR processes, their first stop was Figures. Our up-to-date, location-specific benchmarking data was used to create a scalable hiring system with salaries designed to attract top talent in a competitive market. 

One non-negotiable objective was that any benchmarking data could easily integrate with their existing HR software so that this data was easily accessible at all times. And because Figures integrates with a wide range of HRIS platforms, this was easily achievable. 

After integrating Figures salary compensation data with the HRIS platform Lucca, the HR team at Lifen were able to make that salary data available to all employees — helping to boost transparency and trust. 

Future Trends in HR Integration

HR is changing — fast. Here are the top trends to look out for in HR integration, for 2024 and beyond:

  • AI integration: We know, we know, artificial intelligence (AI) is everywhere. But that’s because it’s reshaping the way HR operates. Machine learning can be used within HR integration to identify patterns and insights that help companies change the way they approach parts of their processes. It can also help automate manual tasks like resume screening and interview scheduling — freeing up a significant amount of time. 
  • Cloud-based integration: HR solutions based in the cloud are scalable, accessible, and flexible, which means they appeal to many companies. The rise in remote work has made transitioning to a cloud-based system a natural choice for many companies — because data can be instantly accessed and shared across multiple locations, while still being securely stored. 
  • Cybersecurity concerns: As data breaches become more common, many companies are proactively looking at ways to protect their data. HR integration can help boost security and protect sensitive employee data from breaches. At the same time, stronger data protection regulations are driving stricter practices in how data is processed and handled. 
  • Employee experience: In a candidate-driven market, the employee experience is coming to the fore as a way for companies to stand out. HR integrations can help provide an intuitive, user-friendly way for employees to access and interact with many HR touchpoints during their work lives. Integrated HR systems can also use AI and machine learning to provide the kind of personalised experience that employees are increasingly looking for. 

The Next Generation of HR Processes is Here

HR integrations are showing us what’s possible — and forward-thinking companies are already embracing this technology as a way of streamlining HR processes, protecting their data, maximising efficiency and ultimately, staying ahead of the curve. 

Ready to implement HR integrations at your company? Get in touch, and we’ll show you how it can be done. 

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