How to Automate HR Employee Management

This is a series of blog posts by Unitfly in which we are describing stories of Digital Transformation – stories about improving business using the power of technology. Have in mind that in these articles, we are not referring to any of our specific clients – these are examples how we see the potential of technology in business context. Today we talk about Human resources automation.

Human resources departments spend most of their time on administration, instead on what should be at the core of their business – employees. M-Files provides complete automation of human resources processes from hiring to managing each employee.

What is the current situation?

The customer is a flight agency with more than 1000 people in their division. They are using a legacy HR application where they keep all the records of their employees. Current HR application stores all the data in the relational database (they are using Oracle database).

Moreover, all documents are stored on a file share and these documents are referenced in the HR application. The customer is also using Microsoft Active Directory, a solution for rights delegation, managing sign-on and defining and representing hierarchy.

Time consuming manual updating and searching for documents

HR department is simply spending too much time on manual updates of data and documents. Since they don’t have everything needed for their tasks, they often have issues with finding the right information and documents.

All mentioned would not be a huge problem for HR department if they had plenty of time to waste. Manual updates in several places are very time-consuming. By spending time on administration, HR department cannot focus on what should be their core business – their employees.

Ineffective HR department results with a whole set of different issues throughout the company.

What does the client need?

The customer understands that they need improvements and modernization of current HR application and they want to invest in a solution which can satisfy these needs in long-term:

  • Central system with all employee information and related documents
  • Solution for automation of their human resources processes in order to better track individual employee
  • “Smooth” integration with existing solutions.
  • Solution which will perfectly work within their network and existing security solutions

M-Files document management system – solution for human resources automation

process of human resources automation

Having the customer’s goals in mind, we proposed the M-Files platform as a central system for HR processes and document management system. M-Files provides easy-to-use solution and complete automation of human resources processes from hiring to managing each employee.

In order to connect all existing systems with M-Files we decided to use Microsoft BizTalk which allowed us to connect to the existing database, file share and configure everything within existing corporate network.

Results of the implementation of M-Files

After the successful implementation of HR processes within the department using our solution, employees in the HR department finally have everything organized and easily accessible, therefore, they are spending less time on administration and more time with the employees.

On corporate level, company is finally improving their employee performance, as HR is providing care and tracking of employees on the individual level.

Implemented solution does not only impact HR. Effective HR department led to a better employee satisfaction, which, consequently, created a more efficient company and increased customer’s satisfaction. Moreover, implemented solution allows us as a provider and client to continue working on further improvements in other departments, in order to digitally transform the whole company.

What do you think of this example? Leave us a comment about your thoughts of digital transformation in HR.

Do you think your company would benefit from this solution?

How to Manage your Travel Orders

This is a series of blog posts by Unitfly in which we are describing stories of Digital Transformation – stories about improving business using the power of technology. Have in mind that in these articles, we are not referring to any of our specific clients – these are examples of how we see the potential of technology in business context. Today, it’s about managing travel orders through automation.

Read on to see how M-Files solves the challenges of manual handling of documents, in this case, travel orders and invoices with document management and digitalization.

What is current situation?

The customer is an intermediary company with more than 300 employees where at least half of them are commercial travelers. They are generating around 50 – 100 travel orders per day, so keeping records and logistic is very challenging. To get from point A to a point B in logistic terms employee has a few steps to go through before actually going on the road.

graphic representation of travel orders process

Customer has solved almost every manual step in their process using BizTalk integration solution where they also connected all the systems needed for travel orders process.

Huge number of documents piling up

Employee satisfaction and productivity has increased with the implementation of BizTalk, and now the only thing to do manually is to create a request in travel orders application. With one part solved we still have problems with managing travel orders, a situation that could potentially give the finance department lots of headache.

Finance department has to deal with a big number of travel order documents (.pdf-s) that are arriving on a daily basis. Also, there is a huge number of additional receipts and documentation for each travel order. Papers pile up.

What does the client need?

The customer needs to digitally archive all the travel orders (.pdf-s) that are sent through BizTalk to the finance department. They also need a place where they can digitally save all the receipts and documentation of each travel order.

M-Files for document management and digitalization process

Knowing what customers need, we have proposed the M-Files platform for document management and digitalization process. The missing piece was a connection between BizTalk and M-Files, so customer purchased BizTalk M-Files adapter.

At the end, the integration process was set up to send data to two asynchronous systems:

  • to M-Files, where .pdf is pushed with all their available metadata
  • to financial system, where cost logic is done

Effortless processes and satisfied employees

After a successful implementation of the travel order process, employees are more satisfied. Finance department got all travel orders and all documentation digitalized in one place. Travel orders are searchable, easily accessed so that employee can effortlessly go through travel orders process. Employees can even scan their receipts and required documentation and upload or send to the finance department by email.

Implemented solution significantly reduced employees’ completion time for travel order process. It’s not only that company “saves” money, but the company has more focused and relaxed employees for their ongoing work.

Are you interested in our solutions and details about technologies used in this use case?

Decision-Making Process

One of the key researchers in the field of management and decision-making was Herbert Simon. He was, in fact, among the pioneers of artificial intelligence, information processing, decision-making process, organization theory and other important scientific domains. If we think about digital transformation, which is one of the most important topics and needed change nowadays, we will see that these topics “play” a significant role in today’s industry changes.

Digital Transformation – IT for Business

One of the most concrete definitions of digital transformation we use is – digital transformation is IT for business. Basically, application of digital capabilities and technologies in business processes, products, and models. Moreover, it is a cultural change. It is a change that challenges organizations to be innovative, adaptive and customer oriented.

Today, if we look at the area Herbert Simon had an impact on, we will see that there is no digital transformation without business intelligence (which among other things, consists of information processing and decision-making) and organizational changes.

4 Phases of the Decision-Making Process

Simon’s model defines four phases of decision-making process:

  • Intelligence Phase
  • Design Phase
  • Choice Phase
  • Implementation Phase
decision making process

It’s important to note that first Simon’s model contained only three phases – implementation phase was added later. Also, we could add a fifth phase – monitoring, but that can be viewed as an input for the intelligence phase.

Intelligence Phase

Firstly, the decision-making process starts with the intelligence phase. In the first phase, decision makers examine reality and try to identify problems or opportunities correctly. This phase is not only related to the Simon’s decision-making process, but also to other fields and other methodologies. For example, we like to practice Lean Startup methodology which emphasizes the importance of right problem definition before building anything (product or business).

Additionally, one of the pillars of digital transformation is the data. Organizations need to become data driven. That means proper usage and implementation of Business Intelligence (BI) systems. Business Intelligence implementations are considered successful only if you have clear business needs and see real benefits from it. Business Intelligence is not just about data. It should be connected with organizational goals and objectives!

Therefore, intelligence phase includes actions like:

  • Defining organizational objectives
  • Data collection
  • Problem identification and classification
  • ….

The intelligence phase can last really long. But, since decision-making process starts with this phase, it should be to be done properly. This is a key ingredient in every business success.

Design Phase

The main goal of the design phase is to define and construct a model which represent a system, by defining relationships between collected variables. Once we validate the model, we define the criteria of choice and search for several possible solutions for the defined problem (opportunity). We wrap up the design phase by predicting the future outcomes for each alternative.

Choice Phase

In this phase we are actually making decisions. The end product of this phase is a decision. Decision is made by selecting and evaluating alternatives defined in previous step. If we are sure that the decision we made can actually be achieved – we are ready for the next phase.

Implementation Phase

All the previous steps we’ve made (intelligence, design, and choice) are now implemented. Implementation can be either successful or not. Successful implementation results with a solution to the defined problem. On the other hand, failure brings us back to the earlier phase.

We described Simon’s model which, even today, serves as the basis of most models of decision-making process. A process is described as a series of events that precede final decisions. It is important to say that, at any point, the decision maker may choose to return to the previous step for additional validation.

Even Simon’s model was sometimes criticized as being general, that is why we need to be aware of the importance of decision-making. This model is a concept, a framework of how organizations and managers make decisions.

Plus, it is a good starting point for exploring other topics like Business Process Management.

Do you want to make well-founded, data-driven business decisions? Reach out and we’ll help you turn your data into useful information!