What’s In Your HR Tech Stack? Here’s What 785 Other Companies Have

Have you ever thought about all the HR technology your company has? If you’re a recruiter, you surely have an opinion about your talent acquisition system. You likely know a few things about the onboarding system and comp management. But a recognition system? Do you even know if your company has one?

Whether they’re in the cloud, outsourced, developed in-house, or part of a massive on-premises ERP installation, these systems collectively form the company’s HR tech stack. And collectively, the investment can run into the millions.

Buying into a new system may not make an HR career, but buying the wrong one can quickly unmake one, which helps explain why the most critical systems have replacement cycles of 6, 7, and 9 years. Which also helps explain the length of so many RFPs and decision times that seem to last as long as a presidential campaign.

There are any number of places and sources to turn for help in choosing a new system; Gartner’s Magic Quadrant reports, HROToday’s Baker’s Dozen, the annual HR Tech show, and any number of the lead generation sites that purport to rate tech software.

Add to that list the Optimal HR Tech Stack Report. Produced by KeyInterval Research, whose principals are the well-know John Sumser and William Tincup, the report is a factbook collection of data about 13 important HR functions where technology solutions abound. Instead of rating the various vendors, Sumser and Tincup report on what companies are actually doing and using. The report will tell you what percentage of the companies they surveyed (785 total in 105 different industries) have a particular technology and whether it’s from a vendor, built in-house, or outsourced.

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For each function there’s an analysis to help you understand the significance of the data and a Net Promoter Score, which tells you pretty much what the users think of that particular HR component. (Recruiting systems are not highly thought of. The survey respondents gave them a -9, which can be thought of as a D grade. Learning and onboarding got even lower scores.)

What else will you learn from the report? That a surprising number of companies make do with Excel or Access or some other Microsoft Office component. That 18 percent of the respondents have a homegrown succession management system and that 75 percent got it as part of a suite of tools. But that succession management has the lowest adoption rate of all the functions surveyed. But also that half the responding companies wish they had a succession management system.

For the $2,000 price, what the report gives you is a guide to what’s really important to have in your HR tech stack and what’s not so important, based on the experience of almost 800 companies. As China Gorman, the former COO of SHRM and now CEO of Great Place to Work, said of the report:

If you’re thinking about going to the market for a new HR technology solution, or you’ve finally decided to replace an existing solution, this report should be your first stop. It will help you see what other organizations your size are doing – buying, building or outsourcing. It will provide a road map for how to begin.

Here’s the thing to remember:  It will make you smarter than you already are.

John Zappe was the editor of TLNT.com and contributing editor of ERE.net. John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.