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Top 2018 HR Technology Trends

As last year ended, Gartner identified the top strategic technology trends for 2018.

These trends include everything from AI and machine learning to conversational platforms responsible for blending digital and analog environments to blockchain technology, which is realizing the potential of connecting an ever-expanding set of people, content, and businesses.

As an HR or payroll professional, some of these trends are more relevant to your work than others.

Here’s a curated list of the HR technology trends you’ll want to understand and consider applying within your organizations in 2018:


1. Artificial Intelligence

Remaking customer and employee experiences

As employees adopt more powerful convenience tools (think Uber, or Alexa) designed to learn and carry out individual preferences, they’ll grow increasingly disengaged by antiquated technology and systems at work.

Modern workers want to use Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to help make decisions, reinvent processes, and reimagine the customer experience.

According to Gartner, “Organizations will need to invest significantly in skills, processes, and tools to successfully exploit these techniques and build AI-enhanced systems.” These systems can enable data preparation and integration as well as efficient training.

For example, at CIC Plus, we’re using guided intelligence to help employees quickly and accurately provide tax information with our online tax withholding form service.


2. Big-Data Analytics

Improve recruiting while measuring existing employee value

According to Bernard Marr, an author and data scientist, more data has been created in the last few years than during all of human history combined.

And organizations are helping themselves make better decisions by analyzing large amounts of internal data for hidden patterns and correlations, which can then be used to identify key trends. In HR, specifically, leaders are using data to improve recruiting, drive employee personalization, and measure the value employees deliver.


3. Digital Experiences

Always on, always available

Your image as an HR department—and as an organization—begins taking shape immediately, as soon as a candidate begins interacting with your digital touchpoints. If your recruiting process is modern and your onboarding experience is seamless, then those initial perceptions will promote immediate employee engagement and productivity.

In 2018, employees will be looking for next-generation self-service options. They’ll be looking for greater personalization and consumer-oriented experiences, for functionality that empowers them to make better decisions that improve their overall experience at work.


4. Blockchain Technology

The tamper-proof way to improve recruiting and payroll distribution

Known for enabling the cryptocurrency market, blockchain is an encrypted digital ledger. It’s called a “blockchain” because it’s organized into “blocks” of data, which is then distributed over several networks in a “chain.”

A blockchain works by virtue of its transparency, as all users can view and, in turn, verify the data in every block. In other words, if someone inputs incorrect data—maliciously or by accident—others have the opportunity to flag and correct the data.

Recruiters and other HR professionals could use blockchain technology to verify a job candidate’s credentials, reduce resume fraud and shorten time-to-hire. Blockchain can also benefit payroll functions, as it’s a way to cut out expensive, time-consuming third-party banks.


5. Wearable Technology

A growing number of employers use wearables in their wellness programs

According to Springbuk, an intelligence health firm, 35% of employers use wearable devices in their wellness programs, a 10% increase from 2015.

HR departments love wearable technology because it’s been proven to lower employee stress and improve overall mood, which is why adoption rates are going up with little resistance. If you haven’t already done so, introducing wearables to your 2018 wellness programs could boost engagement, driving a sense of data-driven purpose in your people.


Remember, HR has always been about people

People should remain at the center of your technology decisions

Every year ushers in a wave of new technology innovations, a new standard for managing your business. That said, when considering adopting new HR technology, it’s important to remember that it’s all about your people.

Every HR technology application on our list (and beyond) is rooted in people—their comfort, their performance. So, adopt and modernize your infrastructure following the evolving technology landscape because it’s healthy and productive but, mostly, because it’ll help your employees in profound ways.