A company’s most valuable resource is its people.

It might sound trite, but it’s true. A competitor could make a carbon copy of every physical and administrative aspect of your business, but they’ll never be able to recreate all the wonderfully talented and diverse people which keep it going from day to day. If your most valuable machine breaks down, you can order an identical replacement, but if your star machinist/engineer/salesperson/manager exits, they leave behind a gaping hole that isn’t easy to fill.

While there’s been a revolution of data, technology and computing on the shop floor and the design department, guess what? There’s been a similar revolution in the realm of HR (human resources). While technology in HR has historically been crafted top-down, to benefit the needs of the employer, there are now increasing HR tech functions developed from the bottom up, to benefit the employee.

HR Tech Helps Employees Feel Engaged

When employees are less engaged, they are less productive, according to statistics. Lower productivity leads to lower profitability. While tech-generated employee engagement shouldn’t be the only goal, it’s an important part of the HR package. How can it help?

Career Development

HR technology can offer useful career and personal development tools. Tech tools that focus on crafting a career path help employees take charge of their advancement. A digital interface can enable them to map out strategies for different career paths, to learn what competencies are required for specific positions, and to plan their next steps in career and personal development in alignment with their goals.

Continuous Performance Management

HR best practices recognize the benefit of periodic performance appraisals. The old-school performance review is stressful and cumbersome for both management and employee, and it’s generally inadequate for dynamically addressing all the ways an individual contributes to the company day-to-day. Continuous performance management software enables organizations to offer a multi-dimensional, ongoing evaluation with the aid of tech tools. When performance appraisals are more engaging, workers feel more valued and seen.

Recognition and Feedback

Poor feedback and recognition are a common source of workforce unhappiness. When employees are uncertain whether they are fulfilling expectations, or doubt their contributions are valued, they withdraw. HR tech can avert this problem through interconnected programs and platforms which rely on real-time data and offer real-time feedback. The tools may enable management to offer immediate feedback for a job well done, and they may enable peer acknowledgement from other employees. These affirmations can be archived for review.

Data Analytics

Digital platforms enable the collection, assessment, and predictive use of information from multiple sources. Data can offer a big-picture view of employee productivity and performance, as well as of their career development. Data can also reveal competency triumphs or shortcomings across teams and entire organizations, and deliver kudos or identify the need for further training, as appropriate.

Aligning Individual and Corporate Goals

Performance management tools enable organizations to clarify and map corporate goals, and continuously share them with team members. Simultaneously, employees can see how their career and personal development progress aligns with these objectives. When employees can see that the company supports their goals, and they know they are contributing meaningfully to the corporate goals, they feel valued and engaged.