Posted by: Ron Hanscome | September 24, 2009

Welcome to HCM Tech Vista!

Greetings to all of my fellow travelers in the ever-changing world of HR technology. Thanks to those of you who read my posts on the HRchitect blog before I joined Kenexa in July 2008. Now that I’ve wrapped up my assignment there, I look forward to sharing with you on a regular basis my commentary on the state of the HCM market and the critical issues faced by providers and end users who are trying to make sense of it all. More than 25 years of involvement with HR Technology (now that’s scary) in various roles (practitioner, consultant, vendor executive, and industry analyst), gives me a (hopefully) unique point of view as I gaze upon the landscape of vendors, providers and users of these processes and systems.

I’m a firm believer that learning needs to be a lifelong process – here’s some of what I learned from my time at Kenexa:

  • A heightened appreciation for the need for robust and integrated assessment functionality throughout the integrated talent management lifecycle; it should be applied consistently thoughout (e.g. performance, career development, succession planning) and not just in recruiting.
  • Organizations must increase the impact/value of technology implementations by considering the science of HR and how to consistently embed it into process and technology enhancements.
  • The culture of the organization and a worker’s fit to that culture can be as important as skills/competencies in determining success.
  • Change management is as critical an issue with HCM vendors as it is with end user organizations.
  • Talented and good people are everywhere.

As you’re well aware, change and consolidation will continue to be pervasive in the HCM market over the next several years. New technologies abound, and the vendor community is often forced to choose where to focus their development resources — and not all of these bets ultimately pay off. In the end, the old French saying is still valid: plus ca change, plus ce la meme chose (The more that things change, the more they stay the same). Whatever projects you are considering for HCM technology, make sure you execute these basics flawlessly:

  • Ensure the linkage of hr strategy to business strategy, then tie the hr tech strategy to the hr strategy
  • Focus on your requirements (current and future), not the vendor offerings
  • Put in place strong project management and governance
  • Don’t underestimate the planning and investment needed for internal marketing and change management

In subsequent posts I plan to leverage my background in history (as well as all of the old HR mags I have lying around in my office) to bring some context to what we are experiencing with HR technology today.


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