Five ways for HR to work more efficiently

Lizzie Buxton

Written By AdviserPlus

12th October 2021

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Human Resources is emerging from tough pandemic times. Now is the right moment for HR leaders to move from response and resilience to strategically modifying work processes for the future efficiency of an organisation.

Digital workplace technologies have re-emerged as strategic priorities for all organisations. The need to support new working practices in response to the pandemic has driven leaders to accelerate the pace of digital workplace adoption.

There are many ways in which HR departments can adapt, using technology to work smarter and better. Better for employees who feel engaged and looked after, better for businesses who benefit from a motivated workforce and better for people in HR who are looking to facilitate both of these.

A lot of that benefit comes through working practices that have efficiency at their heart. By showing how efficiency can improve business output, HR can help to secure investment for the changes they want to deliver and get top level buy-in for that change.

So, what do the smarter, better, and more efficient working practices look like? Here are five examples:

Empowering managers

Increasing line manager capability and confidence to deal with problems – such as repeated absences or performance issues – more quickly, before they have chance to become a bigger issue, will free up your HR team to concentrate on the strategy led approach to the people experience post-COVID. Investing in tools that enable managers to take greater ownership of people matters in a risk managed way, will not only provide assurance that HR processes are being followed correctly and compliantly but will reduce the volume of dealings with HR. The result will be increased efficiency of those cases that are passed to HR, pushing the HR contribution higher up the value curve to more complex, higher risk cases and strategic matters.

Avoid manual data input through automation

Far too much time and energy used to be expended on form filling, filing and paperwork management. Increasingly, automation, cloud computing and technology can eliminate much of this time consuming, manual work. This not only speeds up day-to-day management of a business, but it also frees up HR professionals to focus on deliverables that best utilise their skills. They can then focus on the tasks that require the human touch, which add real value to a business through understanding and helping people to get the most from their talents.

Create a knowledge hub

How many times do people in HR get asked the same questions? What are the rules around sick pay? How do I manage an employee who’s always late? What’s our policy on parental leave? Commonly asked questions merit ready answers to manage situations quickly. That’s why a knowledge portal, giving line managers and employees all the information they need to be able to answer those common questions, without involving HR every time, is vital. Storing ER policies and translating them into processes and procedures which are easy to access, and easy-to-follow through a series of flowcharts will increase line manager engagement, confidence and capability and should eliminate the repetition of common questions – freeing up HR professionals to focus on the trickier issues.

The right technology

Built-for-purpose ER case management technology can realise huge cost and process efficiencies for your HR team. Through technology which provides managers with the tools to take control of core processes independently, fewer cases consume the time of ER case advisers and will enable HR team members to handle greater caseloads – freeing up cost to either realise efficiencies or re-direct HR team members to more value-added activities.

Data-based decision making

HR analytics is not a new concept, however most organisations aren’t putting their people data to best use. Efficient businesses are able to spot data trends and act upon them quickly. How many cases do we have in total? How many on a specific topic? How many by manager, region, by time period? Is this a blip or a trend? What stage is each case at? People analytics and the effective use of cross-functional data allows you to conduct trend analysis and spot key factors for absence, training and productivity – all of which aid the effective working of your business.

Want to work smarter? For more information about how we can we can help you and your HR team to tap into an efficient ways of working, visit: or get in touch: and we’ll give you a call back.

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