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HR Automation on the Rise in East Africa

As more companies recognise the power of technology in improving productivity, HR leaders are looking to enhance efficiency while increasing compliance with local labour laws.

By Maggie Mancini

HR automation is expected to rise over the next five years in East Africa as organisations recognise the power of technology in monitoring employee performance and improving productivity in a tough economic environment. The impact of digitisation on commerce and trade remains on the rise, compelling companies to leverage tech beyond the IT department.  

The 2023 World Economic Forum Future of Jobs Report finds that 86% of companies surveyed are likely to adopt digital platforms and apps in the next five years to keep up with the tech trends in big data, cloud computing, and AI. During the Institute of Human Resources Management Conference, SeamlessHR explored the importance of automating organisational processes to enhance efficiency and increase compliance especially in the wake of the newly instituted Housing Levy in Kenya.  

Emanual Okeleji, CEO and founder of SeamlessHR, says that HR departments want to provide great service but too often find themselves saddled with repetitive, transactional tasks as some HR processes are highly manual with unstructured work processes, leading to productivity drain.  

“Businesses that want to experience sustainable growth should prioritise leveraging automation for sensitive processes,” Okeleji says. “Those still tethered to manual practices, like Excel spreadsheets for payroll management, not only leave themselves vulnerable to costly human errors but also squander the opportunity to redirect resources toward growth-driving initiatives.”  

Automation also supports companies in effectively complying with local labour laws as compliant requirements in the region continue to evolve. In response to the Housing Levy established in Kenya earlier this year, Okeleji says that many businesses have been looking for tools that can help them remain in compliance with the law. The additional payroll tax has tested companies’ ability to adapt quickly in an already complex system.  

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