Whilst adoption of HR technology varies throughout the Asia-Pacific region, an expert says it only has one place to go: up.
By Debbie Bolla
With the Asia-Pacific region undergoing intense economic and business change, it’s no wonder that organisations are seeking to update their technology systems in order to earn a competitive advantage. In fact, Sierra-Cedar’s 2016–2017 HR Systems Survey finds that more than 40 per cent of Asia-Pacific organisations are looking to improve or develop a new enterprise HR systems strategy. These strategies include increasing technology budgets; adopting additional technologies beyond payroll and core HRMS; upgrading to cloud-based services; and investing in analytics, mobile, and social applications. Mehul Rajparia, vice president of APAC for SaaS talent management solutions provider Lumesse, has a unique perspective on the market and shares his insights here.
HRO Today Global: What is current state of the technology market in APAC?
Mehul Rajparia: APAC organisations are leveraging more and more technologies to improve HR services. One thing that is important to note is that the maturity of HR technology in APAC varies significantly based on the country and industry. For example, in some countries like Australia or Singapore, HR technology has been in use for many years, whereas in some other countries like India and Indonesia, many organisations are looking for move away from manual/desktop-based tools to some form of SaaS-based HR technologies.
HROTG: Which technologies are HR organisations leveraging now and also looking to implement in the future?
Rajparia: HR organisations are looking at various technologies that can help them manage the entire gamut of HR services. This starts with employer branding, recruitment, and onboarding, and expands the entire employee experience lifecycle. As many Asian countries have a younger workforce that are heavy mobile users and extremely social media platform savvy, HR will look at leveraging these type of technologies. At the same time, when trying to keep pace with a technology refresh, any type of cloud solution that makes it easy to configure and deploy solutions will be important as well.
HROTG: What challenge is HR looking to solve through technology?
Rajparia: I would define this in one word: engagement. Whether it is about attracting candidates to an organisation or retaining current employees, HR is looking for more engagement with stakeholders through the use of the technology. With the ability to reach stakeholders with simple and easy to use processes, mobile-friendly applications that provide social collaboration and can be used anytime and anywhere will help HR increase stakeholder engagement.
HROTG: What is the current state of adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) and automation? What impact do you think AI will have?
Rajparia: Whilst everyone is talking about AI, there still aren’t too many business cases in practice that leverage AI. Though various organisations have started using chatbots for automation, the application of AI is limited at this point. In my view, AI and automation adoption will need to be driven by the technology vendor as a part of their platform.