Africa's SMEs and start-ups are increasingly adopting automated payroll and human resources (HR) solutions as today's business environment demands that HR departments use technologies such as the cloud, mobility and social tools to improve productivity, streamline processes and promote sharing of information.
Speaking ahead of the Sage Evolution ERP Day Kenya on 19 June, where Sage Evolution ERP and Sage HR Africa will present the latest innovations in their software, Gerhard Hartman, head of department, Sage HR Africa said HR departments are rapidly becoming among the biggest spenders on technology in African enterprises because they are looking for ways to automate HR and payroll processes.
"Today's HR department faces a range of complex issues such as talent development, performance management and growing regulatory and legislative requirements. There's a lot of routine admin in HR - automating as much of that as possible can save the organisation time and money," says Hartman, adding that there's an emerging trend where many Africa-based start-ups and SMEs are looking at implementing payroll and HR solutions for the first time.
This means that it is more important than ever to use payroll and HR software to streamline processes and to provide accurate, real-time information for the purposes of statutory reporting and strategic decision-making.
One of the many trends in the market, sees HR directors look towards cloud-based solutions to get the HR and payroll applications they need up-and-running at a rapid pace. Cloud-based solutions mean that companies no longer have to invest in their own infrastructure; software enhancements and updates are taken care of; and they never have to worry about backing up their data, says Hartman. Another trend in the HR space sees the HR department extend access to many of its systems to employees, allowing them to access HR applications from their PCs, tablets or smartphones. For example, employees can apply for leave or provide doctor's certificate online when they're taking sick leave through the employee self-service application. That reduces the HR department's admin burden, while also providing more convenience to the employee.
Adds Nikki Summers, regional manager, Sage Pastel East Africa said: "Technology is an important strategic enabler for Kenyan HR departments. Moving to automated payroll software helps them to ensure accurate calculations and keeps them up to date with the latest legislative changes. By automating payroll and HR processes, Kenyan companies can save time, work more efficiently and focus on growing their businesses rather than on doing manual paperwork."