Human Resource Management (HRM) is a department that has a glorious space in every kind of organization. This department looks after every requisite of their clients, who are essentially, the employees. HR is, of the people, by the people, for the people – in any organization. HR has evolved beyond ‘hiring and firing’ into a strategic business partner and has rightfully gained its place on the Board. Like all departments, HR too has been impacted by technological changes. Internet of Things (IoT) touted as the game changer in the domain of HR. The term Internet of Things (IoT) simply mean the interconnection via the Internet of computing devices embedded in everyday objects, enabling them to send and receive data. This article attempts to discuss how IoT will affect the domain of HRM.
Recruitment, as they say, is the bread-and-butter of HR Management. With the use of IoT, the organizations can get information and predict the requirements and trends of employee behaviour towards a particular job, and hence they can look for candidates in a more refined way. For instance, whenever an employee makes an ID on any job-portal, they ask for a link to one or more of their social media sites, which in majority of the cases is LinkedIn, followed by Twitter, Facebook and the likes. Through these inter-linking’s of the employee(s) or potential employee(s) internet presence, the organization can get more and more access to the pool of candidates to fit the job profile.
Internet of Things can provide immense data to the organizations, in terms of their employee behaviours too. Hence, they can use this data to formulate a strategy based on the quality of employees that they have. The organizations will also have access to ‘market standards’ which will help them to benchmark their own set of performance expectations and in return, the compensations and benefits for the same. Taking an example of ‘Great Place to Work’, this organization conducts yearly national rankings of organizations based on their set parameters of employees, work culture, benefits, career development plans and others. Once this data is out, other organizations, industry sectors can refer to match up or compete in order to step up their employer image.
Using IoT, the organizations can develop specific applications / softwares to use, from which the employees as well as the employers can access data. If we take the example of Uber, the reviews that the customer has to share about the ride and the driver, with or without specific comments is an extremely fruitful way to find loop-holes in their services and upgrade them. Similarly, if organizations have such a platform, where there can be attendance tracking, exchange of ideas, constant feedbacks, performance trackers, and employee engagement, it will benefit the employees and the employers as well.
Organizations will now face another wave of technology that will have a big impact on the way to work. The HR Department is in a unique position to prepare the workforce for this new way of working and to utilize the big data generated by IoT. The technological edge added to Human Resource Development is a very efficient ‘driving factor’ in terms of work productivity. Data stored, collected and interpreted through blazing speed and the cost incurred is based on a ‘one-time-investment’ concept. Hence, time and money, the most crucial factors of an organization’s success can be managed effectively by implementing IoT in HR.
The safety that the software has from external or internal malfunctions is an important quality that must be used while integrating IoT with HR. The employee data can be kept private and confidential with the use of stringent filters in the software. For example: The yearly compensation data or the monthly incentives data can be kept safe and private with the use of these IoT tools. IoT combined with the functions of HR, opens doors to automation and access to a huge amount of data. Automation leads to uniformity in tasks, quality of service and control of day-to-day tasks without human intervention.
But, while we are having an understanding about the advantages of HR and IoT as a unit, there are certain factors that will make this combination a difficult one. Firstly, the immense advancement in technology will be resisted by employees of the organization. Currently, Indian companies have a work culture where-in employee belong to multiple generations. The kind of training required to use such an advanced technology is also a dreary task. Apart from this, the concept of IoT integrated systems is a complex one. If there is a slight glitch or error of any sort in any hardware or software, it may lead to disastrous results. Implementing an IoT based HR System will adversely impact the jobs in the HR vertical itself, since ‘machines’ will now be carrying out various ‘human’ resources projects with precision and quality.
It is up-to a particular organizational leader to implement IoT into HR with a deep understanding of the level of implementation required in combining these parameters, since people, technology and change management, will always be the only three factors that ‘make or break’ an organization.
• Madhuri Singh – HR Business Partner – Heuristics Informatics Pvt. Ltd. (LinkedIn Posts) • Quantifying Employees – Article by Fox Business • Internet of Things – Article by Progressive HRM
MMS – HR Specialization, MET
Dr. Farida Virani