The ABCs of Your HROs: How to Choose an HR Operations Solution That’s Right for You

June 7, 2021
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Choosing an HR Operations Solution is tough. There are so many acronyms and so much overlap, it's hard to decide which solution is best for your business needs. We're here to make sense of it.

HR tech is one of the hottest domains in the business world today. Companies are adopting, implementing, and streamlining such systems worldwide at an extraordinary rate. With an increase in demand comes the increase in supply, and accompanying that is the feeling of confusion and being overwhelmed by the options available and the differences between them. “What does my company need?” “What can I do without and what must I have?” We’re here to help you make sense of it.

If you’re already on the lookout for a new solution, you're on the right track. If not, this is a trend you must jump on as its benefits span far and wide in maxing out operational efficiency at an affordable rate.   

While there isn’t a one size fits all solution, there is a rich variety of choices when it comes to solutions that can cover a wide range of your business’s unique needs. The needs that aren’t satisfied, in most cases, will integrate well with your main system.  


Human Resources Information Systems (HRIS) enable HR departments to digitize many aspects of their operations, such as recruitment and retention, compensation, scheduling, training, and more. An HRIS is put into place to ensure that everyday HR processes are easily accessible and manageable company-wide. As the responsibilities of HR departments and  day-to-day operations have expanded, so too have the capabilities of HRIS systems. Several benefits of a trusty HRIS includes: reduced cost of data storage, easily available, up-to-date HR information at your fingertips, better capabilities to respond to changes, and increased transparency.


Simply put, Vendor Management (VM) is a process that gives organizations the ability to take measures to manage and procure staffing services. A recent development in managing contingent labor spending. In a labor market that becomes increasingly more reliant on employing the services of vendors, VMs have become increasingly relevant and important for all kinds of business owners. It would behoove a business owner to use a VM as they provide a holistic view of the vendor pool from which they are choosing. Business owners enjoy a variety of benefits from their VM, including better selection, mitigated labor costs, maximized value, and more. 


Finding and employing the best possible candidate is crucial for any HR employee. That’s why an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) has become so commonplace in today's HR landscape. An ATS enables HR departments to digitize their recruiting process. Not only does the volume of applicants increase (meaning businesses are more likely to find their perfect match), but there are mechanics to sift through resume submissions, yielding you the most relevant ones, while also providing expansive data so you can make data-informed decisions. The benefits of a solid ATS are felt most by large companies with high levels of recruitment and/or turnover, as well as staffing agencies. 


Workforce Management is a lean and efficient system because it accounts for your employee-base to a T: who does what, when, and how are all sufficiently covered by WFM systems. With a comprehensive WFM system in place, business owners are empowered to make objective assessments of productivity and can reallocate resources appropriately. WFM solutions primarily stem from the operational aspect of HR, though such solutions are slowly adding layers. With the movement of worker wellbeing at the forefront of recruitment practices, businesses with a particularly small (or nonexistent) HR department could benefit from WFM solutions as a first step.


Human Capital Management (HCM) is a set of practices and procedures that focus on organizational needs in relation to human resource management. More specifically, HCM can be broken down into 3 categories: workforce acquisition, workforce management and workforce optimization. HCM becomes extra complicated when HR departments need to come up with holistic approaches to address workplace frustrations, especially when many large workforces include four to five separate generations (from Traditionalists to Gen Z) who benefit at varying degrees from workplace policies. Because HCM is designed to meet workforce trends, companies can answer such challenges with confidence. HCM benefits range from 


HRM is the strategy of Human Resource Management, implemented in order to effectively, efficiently and successfully manage the workforce of an organization. HRM’s main aim is to optimize employee efficiency with the hopes to gain a competitive advantage. HCM can be a core element of an organization’s HRM system.

Keep in Mind...
Many of these platforms are becoming more alike over time in an attempt to become a one-stop solution for HR software. In the effort to integrate new features that address common business needs, the jargon and usage of acronyms has become interchangeable. In other words, some companies may use the acronym HRM despite their software integrating many features of HCM or WFM. This is something to be mindful about when shopping for your business’s HR Operations solution.

What’s right for your business?           

No two businesses are the same. Sure, there is overlap in terms of providing a similar service or creating a similar product, but differences such as company culture, workforce demographics, quarterly goals, and the general modus operandi best define what solution listed above is right for your business. It’s tough to decide.

For SMBs with limited HR resources at their disposal, beginning with WFM, HRIS or HRM would be ideal depending on your specific needs. Established companies with a multigenerational workforce looking to expand its practices surrounding employee wellbeing would be smart to go with HCM. If you’re a large company or staffing agency in need of further digitizing your hiring process, ATS is perfect. Last but not least, a VM helps companies looking to optimize their vendor hiring processes. 

In truth, it could be a unique combination of the systems above at varying degrees depending on your company’s needs. Ultimately, it is up to you to decide which system works best.

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