SaaS HCM dominates in the HR landscape

The future of human capital management is found in the cloud

Until a few years ago, saving money on IT labor and infrastructure was the main reason to move human capital management to the cloud. More recently, the motivation was to gain any edge possible in the fight to attract, develop and retain top-performing employees. Niche applications for recruitment, training and performance management, and full-fledged talent management tools -- nearly all of them delivered via SaaS -- were another compelling reason to move most, if not all, HCM to the cloud.

Today, moving to SaaS HCM is becoming a no-brainer, and the only question remaining for most organizations is when. Historically, on-premises core HR systems have been the dead weight holding companies back, so many settled for a hybrid setup that ties in SaaS talent management or payroll, often from different vendors. It's a workable fix, but it comes with significant integration issues. And the on-premises core HR system that's holding all the employee records isn't getting any younger.

It's now possible to have SaaS core HR that's comparable in feature-richness and data capacity to the legacy systems. And the list of cloud-only HCM vendors offering the complete package is getting longer.

The general thrust to the cloud -- specifically, multi-tenant SaaS -- is undeniable. Forrester Research recently confirmed in a report that said 56% of installed HCM systems run on SaaS. Nearly all of the trendiest HR technologies require it. Employee engagement tools are almost exclusively delivered online, as are the social media-style performance, learning, coaching and recruiting tools. Perhaps most importantly, HR analytics and its more advanced forms that exploit artificial intelligence, as well as machine-learning bots, require the processing power and data storage of the cloud. The future of HR is indeed looking up. This handbook takes a realistic look at the advantages of SaaS HCM.