At the start of my software career with a company named IBM, I was put through a very long technology education process. We spent over a month in an actual classroom for eight hours each day learning how to sell and how to position technology to corporations. As I graduated from class and put those training concepts into use, I noticed a key axiom learned in training was the most beneficial. We were taught “Technology is an enabler of business.” Simple enough but a message that tends to get lost in a sea of marketing messages from technology companies.
Giving consideration to technology decisions for an organization is a much more involved process than choosing the next mobile phone for personal use. The evaluation criteria should be different as well. Mobile phone purchase decisions for example. Typically, these are emotional or referral based decisions. We viewed an advertisement, identified with a marketing message, or solicited a friend for input. An incorrect mobile phone purchase can be quickly and easily rectified: return the phone and select another one. Enterprise technology purchase decisions should be rationally based. And they should be based on the needs of that enterprise. An incorrect enterprise technology solution has ramifications that can extend beyond the boundaries of the organization. Once in operation, it is a bit difficult to remove and start over. Using the filters of “cool,” “stylish,” or “trendy” to evaluate and determine enterprise technology purchases could be a dicey proposition.
There are several selection criteria that can be used to evaluate enterprise decisions. One that I have continued to use and share is to always keep in mind what I learned in that initial software industry training: technology is an enabler of business. With that as a foundation, I simply add the following goals of business that I have learned as an engineer, marketer, and sales professional. Whether the business venture is a lemonade stand or a multi-national petroleum exploration and production company, the goals are the same. They are:
- Decrease costs
- Increase revenue
- Gain a competitive advantage
- Return a profit to the enterprise owner(s)
When viewed using these goals as a lens, technology purchasing decisions can perhaps be made less risky. Obviously, there are various metric based methodologies used to measure these goals. Your organization more than likely employs one or more. The usual suspects, Return on Investment (ROI), Total Costs of Ownership (TCO), Time To Value (TTV) and a few others that are spreadsheet-friendly typically come to the party.
At AspireHR, one of our primary drivers is the realization that HR data and systems are different. These systems contain the financial, professional, and medical livelihoods of individuals within the corporation. Information that cannot be left to chance and that cannot be optimized without expertise in that optimization. People are the lifeblood of the enterprise. Aspire is only focused on the needs of the enterprise human resource (HR) and Human Capital Management (HCM) line of business. Talent Management, social media employee engagement, HR systems integration of multiple HR environments, employee verification, payroll systems, data migration, and more. Our solutions span the HR enterprise regardless of whether the enterprise is using SAP HCM, SuccessFactors, or non-SAP solutions. That is all we do. And our customers bear this out. Our goal is to evaluate the needs of the enterprise in question, listen the desires of that enterprise, and share what we believe is best. The best physicians diagnose the source of the discomfort prior to prescribing a solution. We deliver and meet those four goals using tried and true software and services solutions. These solutions use a tailored and well-honed methodology to bring that value to the HR organization.
Technology is an enabler of business – and business has four goals. How the business enterprise addresses those goals varies from enterprise to enterprise. When all is said and done, people are what make those goals attainable. People will never be removed entirely from the process. The HR organization handles people. After all, the name is Human Resources. The systems and processes that the enterprise uses to maximize those very people should possess the ability to achieve tactical success, as well as the flexibility to achieve strategic success. Enterprise software is not the same as purchasing mobile phones. It is more complex than that. The provider of those solutions should 1) have experience in dealing with those systems, 2) understand that HR is different, 3) deliver solutions that the organization can digest and use, and 4) be there to support the enterprise. AspireHR has the ability to accomplish this for the enterprise. Let us partner with you and make HR a bright spot in the enterprise. HR is all we do. And we are very good at it.
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