Best Practices for Implementing an HRIS System

"Implementing an HRIS efficiently requires planning, team availability, data cleansing, phased implementation, and feedback response. Consult OutSail for expert HRIS guidance

Brett Ungashick
OutSail HRIS Advisor
July 4, 2023
user comparing HRIS systems

An HRIS system is essential for any organization to manage its workforce more efficiently and effectively. An HRIS system allows organizations to save time and money by automating administrative tasks, such as payroll processing, employee onboarding, and performance management. Additionally, this system can create a more enjoyable experience for employees at all levels. However, implementing a successful HRIS system requires careful planning and execution.

In this article, we will discuss some best practices for implementing an HRIS system to help ensure a smooth and effective transition for your organization.

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1) Plan the Project in Advance:

Before implementing an HRIS system, it is vital to develop a project plan that outlines the goals and objectives of the system. This includes setting timelines, assigning tasks and responsibilities, creating budget estimates, and identifying potential risks or issues during implementation.

HRIS implementation plan should include questions such as:

  • What are the main objectives of the project?
  • What data will be stored within the system?
  • Which stakeholders need to be involved in the project?
  • What modules will be prioritized?
  • How long do you anticipate it will take to implement the system?

2) Ensure Team Availability & Bandwidth

It is important to ensure that all team members are available and have the necessary bandwidth to handle their responsibilities during the implementation phase. This includes providing training materials, setting expectations for project deliverables, and having extra resources available if needed.

Additionally, team availability may include scheduling regular meetings to discuss progress and review updates. Doing this helps keep everyone on the same page and ensures all tasks are completed on time.

3) Download & Clean Data

Once the project plan has been created, it is time to download and clean any existing data. This includes deleting redundant or outdated information, verifying accuracy and consistency within source documents, and ensuring all necessary data fields are present.

This step is crucial for a successful implementation, as it will help ensure all data is appropriately stored and quickly accessible within the HRIS system. It also helps to avoid errors and inconsistencies down the line.

4) Define System Processes & Workflows

Once the data is ready, it’s time to define system processes and workflows. This includes identifying business rules, establishing automated notifications, setting security protocols, and configuring reporting features.

It’s essential to clearly understand how everything will work together and ensure all processes are in place before moving forward with the implementation. When done properly, this will help ensure a successful and seamless transition to the new HRIS system.

5) Implement in Phases

Implementing an HRIS system in phases helps ensure a smooth transition and minimizes disruption of daily operations. Start with the basics, such as employee information, payroll processing, benefits administration, and recruiting. Then focus on more advanced features like performance management, compliance tracking, and analytics.

This allows your organization to adjust gradually and allows your team to get used to the new system. Additionally, it allows you to identify and address any issues that arise during implementation.

6) Decide Upon an Implementation Team

As with any project, it’s essential to assign a team of people to oversee the implementation process. This should include a project manager and other stakeholders, such as HR professionals and IT personnel, who can provide insights about the organization’s needs.

The team should be able to handle all aspects of the project, from developing a project plan to identifying the best HRIS for your organization. They should also consider how the new system will integrate with existing processes and platforms, such as payroll systems and employee portals.

7) Optimize the Roll-Out

Once the implementation team has been chosen, and the project plan is in place, it’s time to optimize the roll-out. This includes training users on how to use the system, providing ongoing support, and monitoring usage data to ensure all processes run smoothly.

It’s also essential to create an internal communication plan that outlines how and when employees will receive updates. This helps ensure everyone is on the same page and can provide feedback where needed.

8) Drum Up Enthusiasm

The success of an HRIS system is mainly dependent upon user adoption. To ensure everyone is on board, getting employees excited about the new system is important. This could include launching a promotional campaign, sharing success stories from other organizations that have implemented similar systems, and organizing training sessions.

It’s also good to provide incentives for using the new system, such as rewards or recognition. Doing this will help ensure employees are motivated and engaged throughout the implementation process.

9) Respond to Feedback

Throughout the implementation process, it’s essential to listen to feedback and respond quickly. This will help ensure any issues or concerns are addressed promptly, and that the system works as expected.

It’s also important to provide regular updates on the project's progress. This can be done through internal emails, webinars, or online forums. Doing this will help ensure everyone is informed and on the same page.

10) Build Integrations & Automation

Once the HRIS system is up and running, it’s crucial to build integrations and automation. This includes connecting with other systems, such as payroll, recruitment software, or employee benefits platforms. It also includes setting up automated processes for tasks like onboarding and offboarding employees. Doing this will help streamline HR operations and make your organization more efficient.

By following these best practices, you can ensure a successful implementation of an HRIS system. Doing so will help your organization save time, reduce costs, and improve employee satisfaction. In the long run, this will result in a better-functioning organization with improved efficiency and productivity.

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Meet the Author

Brett Ungashick
OutSail HRIS Advisor
Brett Ungashick, the friendly face behind OutSail, started his career at LinkedIn, selling HR software. This experience sparked an idea, leading him to create OutSail in 2018. Based in Denver, OutSail simplifies the HR software selection process, and Brett's hands-on approach has already helped over 1,000 companies, including SalesLoft, Hudl and DoorDash. He's a go-to guy for all things HR Tech, supporting companies in every industry and across 20+ countries. When he's not demystifying HR tech, you'll find Brett enjoying a round of golf or skiing down Colorado's slopes, always happy to chat about work or play.


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