Top 5 reasons to use a single sign-on HCM platform
May 4, 2017
By Natalie B. Hoffmann, CPA.CITP HKP President
While the advantages of a single platform for payroll processing, human resource management, benefits administration, and time and attendance are widely touted, many employers continue to use disparate systems for each aspect of their workforce management. Some are attracted to individual features from different platforms, but the advantages of using a single human capital management (HCM) platform are significant.
Top 5 reasons to use a unified platform for workforce management
Any HR professional who has used multiple systems can attest to the challenges they present. So much data is shared between each aspect of workforce management that the effort it takes to “make them talk” can be hard to quantify. An onboarding system within an HCM platform saves an HR person hours of error-prone duplicate entry into payroll and HR systems. Employee pay changes can affect premiums for benefits such as life insurance plans, and those changes can be easy but costly to miss when payroll and benefits are separate.
Do you dread open enrollment each year? A platform that allows employees to elect benefits through self-service saves HR departments a tremendous amount of time and takes the pressure of accurately re-entering those benefit elections off their backs. When one system upgrades, it can affect integration, which leads to lost productivity and extensive errors. A single platform means one point of entry, so there are no translation files or manual re-entry.
Taking some of the administrative burden off the HR and payroll personnel allows them to focus on adding value to the business, such as recruitment, retention and engagement.
Recently, many employers have sought single platforms to better manage the mounting challenge of compliance. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires employers to complete 1094 and 1095 forms and report to the IRS with information from all systems. They need employee hours to measure and report health insurance eligibility, employee pay data to measure and report affordability, and benefit data to report enrollment. Employers need to be able to monitor eligibility based on employee hours in real time. A fully integrated platform allows them to do this. (Check out more on time and attendance management in another blog.)
3. Reduce and Simplify Costs
Not only does using a single system affect your bottom line through opportunity cost and other indirect ways mentioned above, it typically costs less to pay for one system instead of three or four. The costs of multiple systems and any necessary add-ons, special reports or support service can add up quickly, and while a new implementation may seem costly, the money saved down the road from only managing one system can be significant.
The beauty of a unified platform is it empowers management and employees to be more self-sufficient. If you choose the right provider, it also can improve support. Quality providers have implementation and customer service teams with experience to support all aspects of the software, meaning one phone call may often be all it takes to resolve a complex issue affecting multiple aspects of workforce management. Without a unified system, you could be spending hours calling various providers to solve a single issue.
Employee compensation and Social Security numbers are extremely sensitive data. Storing that data in multiple systems multiplies your risk of a data breach. A single sign-on system that uses technology such as two-factor authentication gives peace of mind that your confidential information does not fall into the wrong hands.
Those who have made the leap to a single sign-on HCM system have found the benefits far outweigh the initial cost or implementation process. Between efficiency, compliance and security, support, and fees, it becomes easier to add up the value of a unified HCM system.