HR and Digital Transformation: What to know about it


Digital transformation is one of the most important things of our times. A proper implementation of the strategy could help all kinds of small business to survive. But data is starting to show that proficiency in digital transformations is slow. This requires the HR department to step up and find ways to make development of digital skills a priority – no matter the company and the position.

Technology is at the heart of digital transformation. But while focus has often been on getting the right tools for your organization, there actually needs to be more focus on people and knowledge. The fact is, even the best HMRS software is obsolete if the people using it are not technologically capable of doing so. HR’s job is to ensure the company has the right talent and skills to make the transition to new software as smooth as possible. What should HR departments do to make this transition as smooth as possible? Let’s look at how and why HR should put their efforts into managing the implementation of digital transformation.

Focusing on employee development

Organizations have to start understanding the importance of change management. The truth is that change is never easy and there is a natural tendency to resist it. The resistance isn’t always the problem. Change in itself can be difficult because it transforms behaviours and expectations. When you are implementing completely new software, you are making changes to employees’ everyday tasks – even if the core of the task doesn’t change.

That is why HR departments have to manage change and focus on continuous employee development. Companies that put skill development at the core do better. Their employees are more prepared for even the most unexpected. This type of change management is crucial, especially in terms of change development.

The HR department should put priority in making sure that employees are prepared for digital transformation. To do this, there needs to be constant development of skills but also re-evaluation and monitoring during the implementation phase. When a new technology is added to the organization, the management should make sure they follow closely on how employees are handling the change. Employees need to be supported in the event of any problems they might have.

When it comes to change management, a few strategies stand out. Organizations should focus their efforts on:

  • Support change management teams
  • Analyse the skill gaps employees have
  • Update candidate polices to reflect digital skills and recruit talent that supports these skills
  • Equip leaders with agile management skills
  • Redesign roles to account for automation of different tasks
  • Train employees in specific new skills

Enhancing proficiency in digital transformations

But what are the key skills to develop? When it comes to change management, there are certain skills that are more important to focus on. These include the following skills:

  • Agile scrum methodology
  • Design thinking
  • Change management
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Digital literacy
  • Resilience

All these skills should be a top priority for modern organizations. Companies should look to include them in talent recruitment to ensure that new talent is already equipped with the right tools to adjust to digital disruption. But it’s also important to make sure existing employees are able to handle change. Therefore, the development and nurturing of these skills should become the core mission for HR departments.

Implementing affordable policies

The above might sound like a lot of work, not necessarily in terms of time or effort but in terms of money. Thinking digital transformation preparation costs a lot of money is detrimental. The truth is that HR departments can prepare for the transformation without it costing a fortune. In fact, some studies suggest that digital transformation is cheaper than organizations think. Many small businesses are actually doing better than big ones, even though they don’t have the same resources.

What could explain the difference? Here are a few takeaways to keep in mind:

  • Small businesses can be more nimble in their focus.
  • Small businesses are agile.
  • Small businesses can take action quicker.
  • Small businesses utilize the right type of HRMS software.

There are lots of great examples of the above. Small businesses have been able to jump in on digital transformation quicker because they have realized the cost effective benefits of technology. They know that investing in good software pays off and makes the workload easier for current employees. Therefore, they are reaping the benefits of digital transformation while big business is still scared of making the change.

The key to making digital transformation affordable is not just about finding the right HRMS software and other technology for the business. A big part is understanding the talent and skill requirement. By putting employee development at the heart of your digitalization strategy, you can achieve more comprehensive results. Continuous skill development is required – after all, the technologies we use today won’t necessarily be around tomorrow.

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