Technology for Human Resources Management: Seven Questions and Answers

By Ashbaugh, Sam; Miranda, Rowan | Public Personnel Management, Spring 2002 | Go to article overview

Technology for Human Resources Management: Seven Questions and Answers


Ashbaugh, Sam, Miranda, Rowan, Public Personnel Management


Public management is slowly being transformed by information technology. Technology today is the driver of new government processes for dealing with citizens and suppliers. But it is also reshaping important functions and processes that only those inside government may care about such as accounting, payroll, and personnel administration. Taken together, the internal and external impact of new technologies is changing the way governments manage and make decisions.[1]

This article examines the current state and future trends in human resource management systems (HRMS). Such systems are related to a broader "digital government" effort that seeks to apply technology to streamline government processes. The underlying architecture for digital government is the Internet and integrated administrative management systems (which are more commonly known as enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems). This article describes the technology and functional features of such systems and focuses specifically on the business benefits provided by the human resource management system (HRMS) components. Questions examined include:

* What are the challenging issues facing HRMS?

* What is the current state of HRMS technology?

* What is ERP? How is it related to HRMS?

* What are the major technology features of modern systems?

* What specific functions are encompassed by HRMS?

* What are the major business benefits of modern HRMS?

* What are some of the major risk factors in implementing HRMS solutions?

Challenges and State of HRMS Technology

Personnel administration, like most professions, is being challenged by a number of factors that impact traditional practices.[2] Some of the specific challenges include:

* Attracting, retaining, and motivating employees;

* Meeting the demands for a more strategic human resource (HR) function;

* Ensuring legal/regulatory compliance;

* Managing the "human element" of technological change;

* Shifting from a tactical (transaction processing) focus to facilitating strategic planning;

* Combating the perception that the HR function, while necessary, is not a "value-added" service in the public sector; and

* Addressing the push for increased performance and greater accountability in the public sector.

Advances in information technology hold the promise of meeting many of the challenges listed above. But what is the current state of HR technology applications in the public sector? Based on interviews and consulting experiences with state and local government organizations, the authors have identified the following types of approaches that governments have used to develop an HRMS.

Spreadsheets/Database Systems. HR managers often feel that their needs are an afterthought in the selection and design of systems (i.e., the needs of the financial, payroll, and purchasing areas are paramount). Because some financial management systems provide payroll functionality only, HR managers often find them inadequate and build custom solutions using spreadsheets or database applications. Such efforts may satisfy the needs of central HR but the data is not accessible to other departments, which in turn leads to the proliferation of additional departmental systems.

Homegrown Systems. Larger governments have custom built "homegrown" systems to meet their HRMS needs, particularly for payroll purposes. Just as is the case with homegrown financial systems, HRMS systems that are designed and built by a government's internal staff are often "set in stone." Changes in regulations, professional standards, or organizational restructuring can create demands for the collection and analysis of new information that homegrown systems cannot meet.

Specialized "Standalone" Applications. Whether utilized by itself or in conjunction with a central HR system, there are numerous software solutions designed for specialized personnel administration functions such as applicant tracking, compensation/benefits planning, skills/training/test results, time and attendance, and risk management, among others. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Technology for Human Resources Management: Seven Questions and Answers
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.