I felt like I was strapped to a rocket ship.
The company I helped co-found had just been acquired by a large player pivoting towards bringing a unique cloud based solution to market. My team and I were hurling towards a new frontier at an ever increasing speed. We were smart, agile and growing, but I could sense something was missing.
The horizon was changing around us. Our strong backgrounds in technology were serving us well, but implementations were taking longer than expected, solutions were harder to manage and administer and clients were not fully realizing the value of this new generation of technology we were now working with. We knew something had to change.
The Cloud technology we had was great – the UI was clean, it was fast, intuitive and you no longer needed to maintain servers and databases. The solution was not a disparate set of web-based systems patched together but rather a truly integrated SAAS HCM. Why then, do companies still struggle to maximize their cloud-based HCM software? What was it that we felt needed to change in order to make the move to the cloud for our clients as profitable and strategic as we believed it to be?
The answer was surprisingly straight forward – step up the services to match the software.
Aircraft in World War II required a pilot, co-pilot, navigator, radio engineer and a gunner or two in order to accomplish the mission it was sent to do. Modern-day war planes still carry out similar missions, but require a consolidated set of skills from far fewer people. Pilots of both eras need domain expertise on the physics and concept of flight, as well as how to manually fly the plane. The major aspects of air flight and combat haven’t changed. What has changed is the integration and automation of many key elements made possible by advances in technology. Pilots now must also understand elements of navigation, weapons control and communications in order to maximize the utility of that aircraft, but are able to fly higher, faster and further – all with breathtaking precision and strength.
The same is true with the teams that pilot modern, cloud-based HCM systems. You will not achieve the level of success you hope for if you try to mesh together separate HR, payroll, benefit, technical and project experts as you will with one lead in an HCM implementation. We were using the old model of implementation and management when what we needed was to move the model forward to match cloud technology.
A fully-integrated, cloud-based platform requires a team lead that has domain expertise in all of the functional areas that comprise the HCM platform being implemented.
Demand technical fluency
Technology is the new international language. Don’t just hire people that can speak technical, hire people that can speak it, dream it, embody it and translate it into functional, actionable terms that change the status quo. They should be able to integrate open-source technology and embody cloud connectivity as a poet so eloquently does with words and feelings. Passion is not lost here.
Don’t just move to the cloud, embrace it
Let’s face it, you’re done being in the software game. If you never do another regression test again on every interface and policy rule after your vendor issues a new release, you’ll sleep just fine. Your company succeeds when you are able to focus on what you do best. Find and retain competency that helps you to do exactly that. Software implementers and integrators should be steering you towards easier means of fully utilizing the software you purchased and equipping you with the necessary skills to pilot your own software.
Know what you are looking for in a partner
Steer clear of the bloated teams full of the best people that go everywhere together.
Hire the Jack Bauers of HCM technology and hold them accountable for your success. They will know what resources they will need to pull in and which ones are better on the side lines. They can work effectively with your software vendor and your internal teams to lead the project to success.
Soar with us
Covalence was built from the ground up based on the implementation principles outlined here. We are deep subject matter experts who live and dream in the cloud. Our passion is HCM technology and making it sing.