Most Important Features in Every HR Software

7 Key Features that Your HR System Can't do Without

The 21st century changed, changes and will change everything!

When HR systems were first introduced a few years ago, many companies are hesitant to make the shift from paper-based HR systems to cloud-based HR software.

I can’t blame them. In the early days of electronic HR, most systems in the know are either too cumbersome to use or too expensive or both.

There are a lot of HR software today and each of them offers a plethora of features

But today, the playing field has changed. Simply Googling “HR Software” returns over 43 million results (of course, the keyword I used is too “general” for Google to give me specific search results).

My point is: there are a lot of HR software today and each of them offers a plethora of features which you may or may not need at all.

In this post, I’ve detailed seven most important features that you can’t do without to help you get started.

What are you waiting for? Read on!

1. An Integrated Database

One of the most important features of an HR Software is a highly integrated database.

No matter what industry you are in — food, manpower, manufacturing, health — there’s always a need to keep tabs of  your employees’ records and almost everything that’s happening inside the company.

For instance, you need a program that allows you to enter the details of all employees working under your roof, including their skills, education, position and tenure.

An integrated database also allows you to track  your compliance to state employment laws and regulations.

Furthermore, a well-knit database provides helpful information like performance reviews, employee-related problems and other key insights that are critical to your company’s well-being.

No excel spreadsheet can do that.

This amazing feature is virtually useless without feature numbers two and three.

2. Accessibility and Mobility

You are living, working and competing in a very dynamic world. A stack of file folders kept inside a steel file cabinet at floor number 3 is no longer the norm.

Today, everything goes to the cloud. And so must your HR system. The ability to access your HR database anywhere in the world is one of the indispensable features of a top-notch HR software.

3. Easy to Use

If you have a workforce of more than 20 employees, I’m pretty sure that your HR staff is not a one-man army.

If that’s the case, then you need to spend your money on user-friendly HR systems. Why?

Because it provides a good return on investment. A user-friendly software does not require a very high learning curve –– allowing your HR personnel, team managers and employees (we’ll talk more about this later) to grasp its various functionality right away.

This allows everyone involved to focus their time and energy on what really matters most — growing your business — than on 5-hour long trainings on how to use a bulky, awkward HR system.

If you already have an HR system in place and it’s not intuitive, save yourself some trouble and replace it with a more user-friendly HR software.

There are plenty of choices out there so you should not have any problems finding the right system for your business.

4. Self Service

Today, updating addresses, birthdays, holiday requests, etc. is no longer the responsibility of your HR manager.

A self-service feature allows your employees to securely log-in to the system to update these details themselves.

Aside from their personal information, a good self-service HR system also allows employees to submit and manage their absences.

If you continue to rely on paper-based systems or Excel, this time-consuming process will only deter the growth and progress of your company.

These processes should be automated if you want to step up to the challenges of the 21st century. And only a user-friendly, cloud-based, self-service HR system can do that.

5. Reporting Tools

Statistics, graphs, arrays of data –- for most people, these are just numbers but for a CEO or a manager, these are the lenses from where you look at the progress of your company.

Now what happens if you are not looking through the right lens? Powerful reporting tools are one of the most important features of an HR Software.

A good HR system should allow you to generate custom reports on performance, attendance, turnovers, leavers, joiners, etc. with just a few clicks.

Gone are the days where you had to edit, compile and summarize hundreds of Excel files. A powerful reporting tool with good graphical representations is the future of HR.

And it is happening now.

6. Application and Recruitment

Aside from a cloud-based and well-integrated database of your employees, you also need a system that easily tracks applicants for any open positions.

Let’s admit it, employees can and go, no matter how hard we try to keep them in the herd.

A feature that allows HR managers to keep track of applications, schedule interviews and communicate with prospective employees is, no doubt,  indispensable to every good HR systems in the know.

7. Timestamp and Payroll

Payroll. Who loves to process payrolls at the end of every month? Who enjoys going through 20+ time cards, scrutinizing each entry?

For modern HR systems, this task is now automatic. A timestamp and payroll feature makes it easy to track your employee’s schedules and time cards.

Hence, making payroll processing faster, more reliable and efficient.

Some HR systems also have a payroll feature that monitors not only the salaries but also employee benefits, tax withholdings, 401K contributions, etc.

The Bottom Line

I don’t know your industry, your company, your employees nor the name of that secretary who brings you a cup of coffee every morning.

But you do. At the end of the day, the most important “features” that you need to consider when choosing an HR software are your EMPLOYEES.

What are their needs? What can you do to help them work more efficiently? What kind of people are working in your company? Are you operating in a global scale where you work with a lot of virtual teams and remote workers?

Once you’ve identified these important points, then comes the software.

Remember, the best HR software is the one that’s built FOR your employees. Not the other way around.

Learn more about basic HR software features here.


Written By

Lenmark Anthony Baltazar

I have been living a life of HR for as long as I can remember. My experiences helped me realize that true happiness comes from being a blessing to the lives of others. I hope my skills and talents will be a blessing to you as well.