Human Resources (HR), along with many other departments, depends on document-driven processes to get work done. For example, employment contracts must be read and signed by new employees during the onboarding process. In a paper-based office, this process requires someone to make sure the contract is accurately prepared, printed, signed by the employee, received by HR and properly filed. Although the employee contract is an essential part of onboarding a new employee, spending hours of valuable time to complete this process on paper is not.

Here’s a breakdown of how enterprise content management (ECM) software and automation help HR professionals work more efficiently, plus a list of seven core HR functions that can be automated.

What is HR Automation?

Enterprise content management (ECM) software reduces the time it takes to complete tasks—without sacrificing quality of work. Organizations use ECM to capture, store, secure and access information by:

  • Importing documents into a digital repository, whether they originate on paper or in a digital format.
  • Organizing them in the repository, where authorized employees can search for, retrieve and edit documents.
  • Keeping files in a standard format (such as TIFF) that can be easily shared across devices.
  • Archiving records as non-editable files and retained according to a compliant records retention schedule.
  • Making information simpler to locate during an audit or records request.

Automation facilitates these document-based processes and should be an integral part of your ECM solution. Automation handles many of the administrative tasks that, though critical, slow down productivity when performed manually. Such tasks include filing documents, creating new folders and transferring documents between employees. Automation software also eliminates the need for paper-specific tasks like making photocopies and gathering handwritten signatures.

What HR functions can be automated?

Here are some core HR functions that can be improved with automation:

  • Employee records management. Retain employee records according to government regulations in the repository.
  • Employee recruitment. Automatically store applications submitted through online forms in the ECM repository and assign them to a recruiter for review.
  • Employee onboarding. Send confidentiality agreements, waivers and other forms to new hires and, once completed, send them to the corresponding folders in the repository.
  • Benefits. Track when employees become eligible for benefits enrollment.
  • Health and safety. Send update emails to floor monitors when an employee leaves the organization or moves to a new floor.
  • Tax forms. Facilitate the distribution of W2s and other tax documents with employee email reminders.

What are the benefits of HR automation?

HR automation offers a wide variety of benefits, including:

Less room for errors: Use an automation platform to fill in information more consistently and accurately than you could manually.

Remote work enablement: Onboard, offboard and provide other services for employees without any physical paperwork.

Streamline approvals: Get forms and other paperwork approved fast with the ability to route documents to stakeholders automatically.

Gain more information governance tools: Recieve automatic reminders for when you need to archive or dispose of information.

What are the challenges in HR automation?

Securing project approval: One of the hardest parts of automating processes is choosing a platform and getting it approved. If you already have a low-code process automation paltform, this step is already taken care of; you can simply build your HR applications on an already-vetted platform.

Implementation delays: Sometimes projects can experience delays due to lack of resources, higher priority projects that get in the way, or a variety of other reasons. Help mitigate the effect of these delays by using a platform that has a marketplace of pre-built process templates. These templates help you jumpstart any processes you want to automate. You can learn more about Laserfiche’s solution marketplace offering here or by watching this video:

Development resources: An even bigger challenge in automation processes is simply posessing the technical expertise to get things done right, which is especially challenging without dedicated developers. Low-code platforms nearly eliminate this hurdle by having most functions available via a drag-and-drop interface. Process templates from solution marketplaces also help in mitigating the need to program parts of the process on your own.

Further reading

So what do you think – is it time for HR automation at your organization?

The Ultimate Guide to HR Automation

If you’re interested in learning how HR processes can be automated, check out our free eBook on HR automation.


The Ultimate Guide to HR Automation by Laserfiche

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