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New World of HR Tech for Small and Midsize Companies

When I started in the HR Outsourcing industry in the mid-2000s, great HR technology was only for big companies. This technology typically involved hosted platforms that were very customizable. The ability to customize was considered a plus, and the mindset was the-more-customizing-the-better. Implementing the technology could take a year or even longer. It was a huge undertaking obviously, and made sense only for big companies.

Much has changed since then. Perhaps one of the more surprising changes is that so many HR vendors serve only small and midsized companies. These companies have certainly gotten attention from vendors for many years, particularly vendors offering payroll services. But newer vendors have been formed specifically to serve small and midsize companies, and they're doing this very well. Indeed, HR technology has recently been getting very large venture capital investments, and much of these investments are in vendors that serve only the small/midsize market. Namely's recent $60M round is an example.

I've been reviewing many vendors' SaaS systems, from long-time vendors to startups. I've seen great stuff! Importantly, I've seen very little that I thought adequate for a small company but inadequate for a large one. For example, I've seen onboarding that imports employee-specific data into documents that are then electronically signed by the employee. I've seen systems with top-notch user experience, and systems with robust mobile functionality. I've also seen systems that present very user-friendly views of aggregate employee data. Some long-time vendors and PEOs have upped their game to keep up.

With all of these SaaS systems, there isn't the customization as with the old hosted platforms. But these newer systems allow some configuring and can of course be implemented much more quickly. It's possible to go with a single system, or an approach that integrates the services of multiple vendors.

All of the changes and choices can complicate decisionmaking. If you know you need to modernize your HR services and aren't sure what to do, let us know.

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