Can HR And Payroll Software Help Improve Employee Engagement?

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As an employer you’ll know that employee engagement is really important. It’s positively associated with many factors essential for business success including staff retention and increasing productivity levels.

In the past, companies tended to try to grow engagement by holding events like Christmas parties and appreciation days. But since then the thinking has broadened. The parties are great of course, but it’s recognised that engagement is about much more than that. It’s affected by pretty much every aspect of what goes on day to day so keeping employees engaged is more connected to the experiences they’re having on an ongoing basis. It’s about the things that make their lives easier and better. That includes all the systems and processes in place and whether they are helping or hindering employees’ everyday experiences.

Could the use of HR software and payroll software facilitate better employee engagement as part of improving the overall work experience? We think so and here are some reasons why.

Efficient and responsive to system users

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What’s the user friendliness like of your existing HR and Payroll systems for the people who rely on them (probably everyone in your company in one way or another)?

Can employees easily find the information they need? Are current processes and procedures straightforward to follow? Employees at all levels throughout the organisation need good data to do their jobs. They need systems that are accessible when and where they need them to be. If employees are struggling with the overall user friendliness of systems that are currently in place, it’s not going to be conducive to feeling engaged.

In contrast, payroll and HR software that’s user friendly and intuitive demonstrates that the experience of everyone using it is important to the company. It helps improve communications and thanks to being remotely accessible in some instances, can offer greater flexibility too. This all indicates that improving the employee experience is something that matters. That will encourage greater employee engagement.

Good software even has the potential to engage employees from the word go – after all, how will someone feel if they’ve just accepted a job offer then find themselves faced with multiple forms to complete, all of which require a great deal of overlapping information? Impressions are formed easily and this will not be the most positive one at such an early stage!

Reduced risk of errors

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Mountains of paperwork that need to go into HR files – but never quite make it; a report that needs compiling from a selection of excel spreadsheets – one of which has been sorted incorrectly; data that needs transferring across different departments – but inconsistent formats lead to input errors.

These are just some of the scenarios that can lead to errors which have knock-on consequences. Receiving the wrong pay, or having your salary paid late, can be incredibly demotivating and almost inevitably will lead to disengagement. Or how about having annual leave agreed – only to be told a few days later there’s been a mistake. Someone else booked off the same time a while back so you can’t be off after all…

Reliable payroll and HR software reduces the risk of these types of errors and that in turn reduces the risk of disengagement. It reduces the need for information to be input multiple times.  It offers simple workflow features and accurate authorisation processes. Automated reporting gives employees more time to spend on other activities, reducing the pressure and risk of mistakes due to rushing.

Improved autonomy and visibility

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HR and payroll software offers options for employees to view their personal data and access their own information. Some can be configured to allow employees a considerable degree of self-service functionality, and lets them update many of their own details.

Being able to log in to the system enables far greater transparency and creates a sense of a greater level of control. Employees have a clearer picture of the information that’s held about them. If they’ve got questions they can often find out the answers without having to wait or submit queries. Mobile access means it’s available as and when needed to fit in with their timing requirements.

This all demonstrates trust and encourages greater employee autonomy. That’s a significant contributor towards employees feeling more engaged with the company overall.

Better data-based decisions

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Outdated systems that take a long time to interrogate are not efficient or responsive.  They are far less likely to give businesses accurate information and insights. This unreliable information leads to poorer quality analysis which in turn affects the quality of decisions being made.

In most cases it’s the employees who’ll feel the impact of those decisions. It might be a decision that affects everyone like an organisational change; it might be very personal, perhaps due to a pay review decision. Either way, poorly made choices based on inaccurate data can end up demoralising employees, and engagement will take a hit. HR and payroll software, however, can ensure the decision-makers have fast access to accurate, real-time information. That helps facilitate fair, informed and meaningful decisions and ultimately, better employee engagement.

Are you thinking about ways to improve your work environment for employees? If you’re considering whether HR or payroll software could be part of the solution, please do get in touch with us to find out more.