Moving information systems to the cloud is hardly a novel idea; each year, the percentage of businesses who move their HCM and ERP systems to the cloud grows. And when you look at the data, it’s easy to understand why: a unified HCM and ERP cloud system has far-reaching, concrete benefits that touch nearly all aspects of the business. Executive teams often cite advantages such as cost efficiencies, single-sourced data sets, and optimized workflows as top motivators for unifying HCM and ERP in the cloud.
But beyond the readily apparent benefits of HCM and ERP integration, businesses can gain unexpected bonuses as well, particularly in areas of special interest to HR. Cloud plays a pivotal role in the transformation of the HR function into a more strategic organization, but just as importantly, cloud technology can also uniquely position HR to lead a fundamental shift in the way businesses operate on every level.
New research by MIT Technology Review Custom, titled “Finance and HR: The Cloud’s New Power Partnership”, uncovered three unexpected yet transformational outcomes of HCM and ERP integration that underscore its sweeping effects on HR and beyond.
Companies who have completed their transition to the cloud have seen improvements across many aspects of their business, from increased productivity, to cost saving, to better strategic planning and decision making. And because HCM and ERP integration sees measurably high returns, this partnership is often lauded as a clear indication that unified systems deployed in the cloud are critical to continuous business transformation. In this way, successful collaboration between HCM and ERP not only yields measureable ROI, it also illuminates the path toward fundamental shifts in business culture that produce greater agility and innovation.
While it may seem counter-intuitive, revealing the need for additional skill development is a huge, if unforeseen, bonus to cloud integration. After all, the transition to cloud doesn’t create skill gaps; it merely exposes those that already exist. The two most common skills that companies uncovered as needing improvement were collaboration and communication between departments, and time management. While cloud integration in theory allowed for more time to be spent on value-added endeavors, many employees simply had not adopted the mindset required to take full advantage of the opportunity. The challenge here is for HR to identify teams and individuals who are struggling to operate strategically rather than tactically, and both lead by example and create a plan for facilitating the necessary shift in culture and behavior.
As cloud integration allows for more time and resources to be spent on higher value, strategic initiatives, management and individual contributors alike develop muscles that may have been previously underdeveloped. In doing so, employees across the company become more adaptable, more agile, and better able to prepare for disruption—even before it happens. The reality is that disruption is almost always unpredictable—that’s one of the reasons we call it a disruption. But when individuals and teams are accustomed to flexible working models predicated on the ability solve problems as they arise and collaborate to meet ever-changing market needs, weathering the storms of continuous disruption becomes second nature.
For more insights uncovered in the survey, check out “Finance and HR: The Cloud’s New Power Partnership”