We might start by researching the functionality we’d like, talk to our networks and possibly engage a specialist to help us. And whilst the biggest project resource and user of the system is likely to be HR, IT may have some key requirements for your system that you didn’t even know you had! 

Don’t forget that IT are likely to gain some key benefits from the project too, especially if you are implementing an integrated HRIS, assisting with automation to free up valible IT resource. 

If you engage your IT team early on in the selection process they should be able to advise on what your IT infrastructure can support, any security policies you need to comply with and any systems it could be beneficial or essential to integrate with.  They can also advise you on their own capacity to deliver any work that may be required, influencing your timescales for delivery.

On my first HRIS project, terms such as Single Sign On (SSO), Application Programming Interface (API) and Active Directory (AD) were all very new to me.  Whether the HR system will link with another internal system was an after-thought and I didn’t even know I might need to check that everyone had a work email address to access self-service.

Whilst nowadays you’d expect your new provider to cover these areas at the beginning with you, they often don’t!

A simple thing such as requiring work emails may cost the company money if not everyone already has a licence. If the provider needs a particular domain (the last part of your email address – e.g. rethinkhr.co.uk) using personal emails may not be an option.  Single sign on (SSO) – which creates user password synchronisation so that your people don’t need to remember another username and password can also rely on everyone having an internal IT account.

Active Directory (AD) is a common product that manages permissions, access to work systems and identity management.  Integration with AD can be extremely valuable for setting up new starters, managing changes and leavers access without manual processes.  If you don’t need integration, agree what process is needed with IT and ensure your new provider can accommodate any automated emails or reports to ensure it meets your needs.

Integrations, even the very simple ones, tend to need a little internal resource and possibly third-party development. To avoid a nasty surprise regarding costs and time, we’d advise asking providers 3 things during the selection process:

  1. which systems they’ve already successfully integrated with 
  2. whether they have API Keys you can use (IT can explain more!) and 
  3. any assistance they can provide to accurately scope integration requirements. 

There are lots of considerations when selecting the right HR software but we hope the above helps you to think about the IT requirements and involvement much earlier than you perhaps might have, possibly saving you a little time, frustration and money in the process.