Software is designed to reduce bottlenecks and increase efficiency, but to do so, it needs to meet the specific needs of the people and organizations it is designed to help. This is even more important in the Federal Government, in which large agencies have established processes and several requirements for how they engage with technology.
Rigid software that doesn’t take these issues into account and adapt to match specific agency and federal needs can reduce efficiency instead of improving it.
There are several issues to beware of whether a legacy system is not designed specifically for government or federal HR use, or a new enterprise suite is sourced from an established developer that lacks experience with the government.
Matching the Needs of HR Specialists
The HR specialists who staff and operate the key functions in an agency’s HR department have years of experience and extensive training that provides them with skill and insights into accurate position classification and engagement with human resource data in an agency. Some HR software will attempt to automate processes and remove flexibility of human intervention, reducing the effectiveness of these individuals to apply their years of knowledge.
The goal of federal HR software should be to support the work already being done by HR specialists, not to automate tasks that require a human eye to blindly increase efficiency.
Lack of Configuration Options
Good federal HR software should be versatile enough to meet the specific needs of each agency for which it is deployed. Different user communities will have different configuration needs – whether it’s additional security protocols that go beyond FedRAMP’s requirements or interfacing to match the way in which certain form and spreadsheet-based processes are being performed. Configuration without costly customization is a necessity for these large teams.
Data Ownership and Data Sources
When using a cloud-based solution for HR operational support, the government wants to ensure that the data sources are secure and that they ultimately have ownership over that data if use of the product is discontinued in the future. Some vendors retain data ownership, making migration to the next solution more difficult and costly. Evaluate all potential solutions to ensure your agency will retain data ownership and that a future transition will be seamless and not require additional expense or data loss.
Finding the Right Solution to Your Federal HR Needs
Rigid software that fails to meet the specific needs of the agencies for which it is being deployed can be cumbersome and reduce efficiency and productivity far more than it helps. That’s why it is so important that you evaluate all tools based not only industry benchmarks and best practices, but the specific needs you’ll have.
To learn more about how operational support technology can help to improve efficiency and address technology gaps in federal HR, download our eBook, How Operational Support Technology Addresses Technology Gaps in Federal HR.