Human Resources Information Systems Grade (Oct. 19th, Human Resources Information Systems The establishment of an effective Human Resources Information Systems is fundamental for enhanced organizational productivity, increased efficiency and also boosting morale of the workforce (Kavanagh, Thite & Johnson, 2014). However, there are several changes that can improve the effectiveness of the HRIS, to reduce the administration burden of private or government organizations, and ensure improved retention rates of employees within the organizations. Such changes include: Virtual attack-proof programs Since the establishment of the HRIS as a fundamental component for managing the human resource function within organizations, many challenges have arisen, especially related to the violation of the privacy and confidentiality of the employee, management and other human resource data stored by the system (Radif & Agboma, 2010).
While security measures such as selective access of the system by authorized personnel only, and the use of passwords have helped curb the violations, they have not deterred the technologically savvy hackers and information attackers from accessing the valuable information of major organization (Kavanagh, Thite & Johnson, 2014). Therefore, the development of the Virtual attack-proof programs is a modern technological development that should be considered for updating the HRIS of different organizations, so that the valuable HR information is stored virtually by the newly developed programs, which make it difficult for hackers and information attackers to access or attack the information (Radif & Agboma, 2010).
Employee Self- Service (ESS) This is a new technological development in the field of human resource management, which provides the employees an opportunity to access and manage their own employment profile from the organizational database, through secure and individualized portals (Pennsylvania, 2002).
The adoption of this system by organizations and government institutions can go a long way in improving and even advancing the HRIS, since the employees are responsible for applying different technologies to maintain and enhance the security of their information held by the organization. This way, the burden carried by the organization to monitor and update the employees record is shared with the employees, making the HRIS system more efficient (Pennsylvania, 2002). Changed government regulations on technicalities The government regulations and policies regulating the HRIS have focused on the security aspect of the system, requiring for enhanced measures by organizations applying the HRIS systems to ensure that the privacy and confidentiality guarantees of their employees are not violated (Radif & Agboma, 2010).
However, the government regulations have not addressed the issues of technicalities associated with the downtime of the HRIS systems, which have often caused untold losses to organizations by bringing critical functions of the organizations to a halt (Kavanagh, Thite & Johnson, 2014). The legal disputes associated with such technicalities do not have solid procedure, since the existing policy regulations have not addressed technicalities.
Therefore, the government policy regulation should change towards establishing legal procedures for addressing such technicalities associated with the HRIS. Such a policy move will reduce the HRIS concerns for organizations, and thus make it more effective. Disadvantages of using interviews and focus groups for data collection for determining HRIS need Cost Interviews can be costly where the organization has a large number of personnel, considering the fact that the time required for arranging interviews with the organization’s personnel as well as the manpower required to cover all the personnel interviews may result into the organization incurring high costs, compared to other indirect methods (Weller& Romney, 1988).
For example, it can take less than 30 minutes for an employee to fill-in a HRIS analysis questionnaire, but interviewing the employee personally will certainly take much more time and manpower. The same applies for the process of formation of focus groups to discuss the HRIS needs, which will derail the performance of essential organizational duties to have the focus group discuss the HRIS, thus making it a very costly method of gathering information (Pawar, 2004).
Biasness and Subjectivity The interviewer and the focus group leader has an opportunity to influence the outcome of the process, through asking the questions that will suit their interests, while at the same time reporting the interview and the focus group results in a way that will align with their intended outcomes (Weller& Romney, 1988). This is different from other methods of data collection, for example the use of questionnaires, which can be formulated and sent to the employees to answer, and then received back without any influence of the interested parties.
Lack of standardization The application of interviews and questionnaires for different people or groups respectively would mean that there lacks standardization in the comparison of the outcome (Pawar, 2004). This is because, the individuals or the groups interviewed first may raise interesting questions, opinions and point of view, which then becomes part of discussion in subsequent discussions. The effect is that some interviews or focus group discussions might be more detailed and comprehensive than others, making standardization and comparison difficult. Strategies for overcoming the disadvantages First, structured questionnaires should be used to collect information, since they will offset the lack of standardization limitation.
Secondly, sending questionnaires directly for the employees to fill-in and send them back is a strategy that will offset the bias and subjectivity limitation. Finally, to offset the cost disadvantage, the HRIS information needed for analysis should be collected through questionnaires which are less time consuming (Weller& Romney, 1988). Critical sources of data-gathering initiatives for an HRIS needs analysis Stakeholders’ initiative This entails the data-gathering initiative that is led by the organizational stakeholders ().
The responses from different organizational stakeholders act as an important source of data for HRIS analysis, since the stakeholders are directly affected by the system. The advantage associated with this initiative is that it addresses the fundamental concerns of the organizational stakeholders, as the parties affected by the HRIS first hand (Radif & Agboma, 2010). However, the disadvantage associated with this critical imitative is that; the responses from the stakeholders could be subjective, biased and contradictory, making it hard to assess the overall needs of the HRIS analysis. Outside research Outside research is another critical source of data-gathering initiatives for assessing the needs of HRIS.
This is because; through outside research, it is possible to understand the developments, changes and advancements in the system, which can be beneficial for the organization (Radif & Agboma, 2010). The advantage of outside research as initiative for gathering data for HRIS analysis is that; it creates a new focus outside the specific organization’s viewpoint, for enhancing competiveness of the organization (Kavanagh, Thite & Johnson, 2014). However, the disadvantage associate with outside research is that the needs of the specific organization may not tally with the needs of other organizations, owing to the structural and functional differences.
Pre-existing gaps The use of pre-existing gap is a crucial initiative that enables an organization to collect data for HRIS analysis, since it focus on the initial needs of the organization before the HRIS implementation, and the unmet needs after the implementation. The advantage of this method is that it helps the organization address both the HRIS and the structural challenges of the organization that may hinder the effectiveness of the system (Radif & Agboma, 2010).
Nevertheless, the disadvantage of this method is that it limits the needs of the HRIS to the pre-existing needs as opposed to the existing ones. Gap analysis report of the organization’s payroll system Current state There has been an improvement in the payroll system of the organization, where it is now possible to access the payroll online through computers. This occurred after the implementation of the current HRIS, which changed the previous trend where payrolls were only accessed in hardcopies. However, the organization has not fully digitized the payroll system such that it can be accessed through hand-held devices such as Smartphone.
The future desired state The access of payroll is key for the employees, since it enables them make swift decisions where the need be, such as incase of the need to obtain a soft loan (Kavanagh, Thite & Johnson, 2014). Therefore, while the accessibility of the payroll through the computers is a major advancement which improves accessibility, the accessibility should go full swing, so that the employees can access the payroll through mobile phones.
This is necessary because; mobile phone devises are more portable and easily accessible since individuals have them all the time, as opposed to computers. In this respect, the organization should prioritize the integration of the mobile phone data processing software into the HRIS system, so that it can enable the payroll to be accessed through mobile phones. References Kavanagh, J., Thite, M. & Johnson, R. D. (2014). Human Resource Information Systems: Basics, Applications, and Future Directions. SAGE Publications. Pawar, M. S. (2004). Data collecting methods and experiences: A guide for social researchers.
Elgin, IL: New Dawn Press. Pennsylvania. (2002). Employee self-service: ESS employee self-service. Harrisburg, Pa: Pennsylvania Office for Information Technology. Radif, M. & Agboma, F. (2010). Critical analysis of challenges facing HRIS adoption in developing countries: The case of India. Manchester: University of Manchester. Weller, S. C., & Romney, A. K. (1988). Systematic data collection. Newbury Park, Calif: Sage Publications.