At Tuesday’s Fifth Annual Small Business Summit, Strategy Award Winner Simon Binder of Green House IT said that the reason why Green House IT survived and indeed thrived in 2009, while other businesses did not, was because while other businesses constricted, Green House IT invested in growth.
One big part of growth is your employees (or contractors) who are absolutely necessary and in fact your company’s most important asset – even more than customers.
There are three or four important parts of employee management – recruitment, career development and ensuring that all employees (or contracted staff) are working at optimal levels, are sufficiently motivated and serving customers to your satisfaction. Am I forgetting anything? What about PAYROLL and time/expense!
Technology can be of great assistance in ensuring that you are able to effectively manage your employees and contractors. Using tools like Excel, might be good to start out with but as you grow, the complex needs of employee management, far outweigh their capabilities.
Vincent Chan, Founder and President of Primitus, has created BackboneHR (in beta testing) which is an online employee management tool.
Vincent said, in an email interview that after working at a Fortune 100 company and interviewing with many big corporations in previous years, I realized that there is a massive gap in HR technology between large organizations and small businesses. Large enterprises not only have their own HR tools that can streamline the whole recruiting process but also different talent management tools to organize and monitor all people related data inside the company. However, most small business still hack together solutions for their HR problems with Excel, pen and paper, or nothing at all. Why? Because existing products cannot satisfy their needs. In this talent age, companies with the best talent win. Small companies can’t ignore HR and talent management. We would like to build a HR system that is specifically designed for small business. We want to simplify HR management for them so they can gain control over and do more with their workforce.
His competition, according to him is: Ultimate Software, Taleo, SuccessFactors, Workday, and EffortlessHR.
He said that Although most of them (the competition) are established companies, their major focus are on mid and enterprise customers due to their complicated sales model. They designed their products for huge companies and hoped that other small business customers will like the products as well. End result: An ugly, expensive and complicated tool for small company.
Right now BackboneHR is free but expect it to be $30 – $60 a month depending on which plan is chosen.
Employee management consulting company Towers Watson finds that talent and performance management systems remain the top priority for HR service delivery professionals. A survey they conducted indicated respondents specifically cite onboarding and learning management as two important areas for expansion.
The survey results are below:
Instead of piecing together “ad hoc” solutions to manage your employees, if you want your company to really grow it’s critical that you use the RIGHT tool for the RIGHT JOB.
Intuit has a nice primer on hiring and paying employees here.
If you’re looking for a solution to manage employee reviews, Success Factors has solutions for businesses of every size.
For those of you who do not have employees but are using contractors, services such as Elance are ideal platforms to find, hire and manage these relationships.