Simplifying Self-Service

HR Technology

Five tools that empower employees with a consumer-like experience.

By Deepak Bharadwaj

If Siri and Alexa can order pizza and turn off kitchen lights, then why does it take three emails and a phone call to get something done at work? The stark difference between how personal and professional lives are conducted is becoming more evident by the day. While HR leaders work to give their departments the tools and training to provide high quality service in today’s modern workplace, the road to change is a long, uphill battle.

In an attempt to keep up with the rapid change of pace in technology, organizations have added on services—often one at a time—to handle and meet current needs. But add them all up and organizations can end up with a complex web of HR systems and processes. From onboarding to payroll, managing benefits, and facilities, HR professionals understand all too well the complexities of providing high-quality service for employees. But executing this with multiple systems adds a whole new level of difficulty that has HR teams and employees saying, “No more.”

In order for HR teams to succeed in the modern workplace, there are five key tools to consider:

1. An enterprise platform. Organizations can minimize manual tasks by implementing a single platform that orchestrates the delivery of employee services through structured work flows. A system that tracks and responds to employee requests in real time, monitors cases, automates manual processes, and can manage cross-departmental activities will give HR the ability to deliver a consistently great employee experience. Because an enterprise platform can automate workflows and routine inquiries, the administrative burden on HR is significantly reduced. By automating case management, employee requests are routed to the right individuals, in the right departments, which saves time on both sides.

2. Self-service HR. By giving employees personal access to everyday HR services, they will feel empowered to find the answers they need in an easy-to-use format—all while getting real-time support. It also means that HR practitioners will not have to spend a significant amount of time answering transactional or repetitive questions.

3. HR knowledge base. An HR knowledge base that contains relevant information, FAQs, and policy guidelines that can be accessed by employees directly can save organizations both time and money. By bringing everything together under one roof, HR organizations can simplify the process for employees to find answers to questions. This approach also gives employees the ability to submit and track the status of inquiries, resulting in more positive experiences.

4. HR service delivery model. To meet the needs of today’s employees, HR is increasingly moving to a service delivery model where HR services and information are delivered to employees through multiple channels in a consumer-friendly way. Using artificial intelligence, chatbots, or text messages to access and deliver HR services, companies can provide an experience to employees that is streamlined and user-friendly. By making employees’ interactions with HR similar to the way they leverage consumer technologies, organizations are giving employees what they need to work productively.

5. HR case management. When employees are facing unexpected emergencies or personal life events, business leaders can ensure they have easy access to HR through a well thought-out and organized case management foundation. Effective case management will make employees feel supported by providing personal interaction with HR. It is these moments that matter the most in the eyes of employees, and how HR handles them will have a great impact on the employee experience in the workplace.

To keep up with the demands of today’s employees, HR teams need to continue investing in new technologies to ensure that they are taking advantage of the latest tools to maximize the strategic value that HR can bring.


Deepak Bharadwaj is general manager of the HR business unit at ServiceNow.

Posted May 31, 2018 in Enabling Technology

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