Best HRIS Systems in 20212021-03-16T14:41:48-04:00

Best HRIS Systems in 2021
HR Payroll Systems » Best HRIS Systems in 2021

As you set goals and make plans to improve your HR efficiency in the new year, your software is one of the easiest upgrades you can make to accomplish this goal. Human resources information systems (HRIS) are critical to the success of your operation, as they help you handle payroll, onboarding, workforce management, and more with greater ease — but they all differ in terms of performance, user-friendliness, features, and hosting options. You may feel overwhelmed by all the options out there claiming to be the best one, so to help you in your search, we’ve selected some of the top HRIS systems and highlighted what makes them great based on user reviews and our professional opinion. We hope this guide not only helps you understand what to look for in HRIS systems but also increases the efficiency and productivity of your year in 2021.

What Is an HRIS and Why Should You Use One?

Survey findings by the Society for Human Resource Management show that 70% of businesses struggle more with basic HR functions than nearly any other aspect of their company. Whether your organization has less than 50 employees or over 300, it’s no longer practical to store employee records in filing cabinets or have HR personnel carry out menial tasks. The best HRIS systems give you a safe digital database in which to store sensitive information and retrieve it securely from a browser, desktop app, or smartphone. These systems also automate tedious HR functions to save companies time and manpower and free up the hours of staff to focus on the human aspects of HR. Some of the key features of an HRIS include:

For your company, an HRIS upgrade could mean greater productivity, decreased costs, more informed decision-making, improved operational efficiency, and even increased employee satisfaction.

What To Look for in Your HR Software System

Not all HR software is created equal. Below are some of the most important features to evaluate as you compare some of the top HR platforms:

Intuitive interface: An HRIS won’t be of much help if you and your staff can’t figure out how to navigate it. Look for a database that is highly customizable and easy for people of all computer skill levels to operate.

Data-driven reporting: Reports are one of the top reasons to use an HRIS, so make sure the system you choose outputs insightful reports based on hard data from all areas of the company. Ideally, these reports should help you make important decisions.

Effective employee management: People are at the heart of HR, so your HRIS system should also be employee-focused. Pick a system that makes it simpler to hire and manage employees across departments.

Our Top HRIS Picks for 2021


Ideal for: Small- to medium-sized businesses

What makes it great: BambooHR has built a strong reputation of high customizability and user-friendliness with a greater capacity for integration. Most importantly, though, it’s all-inclusive. This dynamic software can take on any tasks that your HR personnel handle on a daily basis and gives you greater efficiency in performance management, onboarding, benefits administration, applicant tracking, HR reporting, and more.

Noteworthy features:

  • Intuitive interface

  • Robust information center

  • Hands-on customer service

  • Job posting syndication

  • New features frequently rolled out

  • Custom time tracking and reporting

  • Employee self-service accessible anywhere via the mobile app

  • Employees can search and maintain their own records with ease

Pricing: BambooHR offers affordable pricing starting at $4.95 per month for each employee, which makes it cost-effective for organizations with lots of employees. Most users feel that the price is justified, given its immense range of intuitive features.

What people are saying::
“What I love the most about this platform is the level of user friendliness. Beside that, the project managers will assist you anytime within the implementation month and are always open to your ideas. I see that this company in particular values clients and is always open to improvement… I would definitely recommend it to a friend.”

— Alexandru Olariu


Ideal for: Small companies of 50 employees or less

What makes it great: Zenefits is an easy-to-use HR platform built with smaller companies in mind. It empowers them to save time, streamline their HR functions, and pay as they go. Most importantly, however, it provides full visibility into employee profiles so that managers who double as HR reps can easily and quickly navigate the user interface. It serves the full set of core HR service needs, including performance management, onboarding, payroll, and more.

Noteworthy features:

  • Online dashboard for quick retrieval of employee data

  • Easily run reports with real-time info

  • High encryption standards

  • Simplified benefits management

  • Appealing user interface

  • Easy customization

  • Responsive and helpful support team

  • Great online resources

Pricing: Starting at $8 per employee per month, Zenefits starts a little higher on the spectrum, but this price gives users access to each of its core HR modules, the mobile app, scheduling features, and integration capabilities as well as free add-ons, such as payroll software. Some add-ons increase the monthly price per employee with advisory service add-ons costing an additional $8 per month. For an additional price per head, employees can also choose packages with even more features.

What people are saying::
“Zenefits has been extremely helpful for our small business. We recently switched from another provider and are super impressed with the platform… Not only are we able to get everything done in the same place, but it’s extremely simple and quick. Zenefits also has great online resources that help answer all my questions, which make it so that I rarely have to call their customer service… Representatives are super pleasant and quick to respond to any questions, which is great. Overall I highly recommend Zenefits for any business large or small.”

— Silver Rosales

Namely HR Software

Ideal for: Small- to mid-sized businesses (50 to 500 employees)

What makes it great: Namely is the perfect fit for small- to mid-sized businesses needing a comprehensive and scalable HR, benefits, and payroll solution. This customizable platform is easy to navigate and offers a host of features that can be tailored to the needs of any business. The company has distinguished itself from its competitors by creating arguably one of the best experiences for employees. Users of Namely report 75% higher employee engagement and 72% higher productivity.

Noteworthy features:

  • Mobile app accessibility

  • Built-in ACA reporting

  • Integration with payroll and  benefits software

  • One-click reports

  • Benefits insights

  • Automatic benefits and deductions updates

  • User-friendly dashboards for managers and employees

  • Customizable rating scales, performance templates, and more

  • Always using the latest and greatest version

  • Configurable back end

  • Role-specific workflows

  • Time- and goal-tracking features

Pricing: Prices start at $12 per employee monthly, which means Namely may get costly for organizations with thousands of workers. But for small- to mid-sized companies who want to provide the best HR experience for employees, users say this software hits the sweet spot.

What people are saying::
“What I really love about Namely is that it’s super user friendly and there’s a lot of fun community aspects to it. That challenge of getting groups to actually use the system isn’t even a challenge.”

— Anne Soucy, Sr. HR Generalist, Mars Advertising

“Namely is super streamlined, super easy, and everybody can log in and quickly access all their information, benefits, and communicate with one another.”

— Vinny Antonio, President, Victory Marketing Agency

“What I like about Namely is the interactive feature of the newsfeed and how it enables my employees to interact with the company.”

— Melissa McCurry, HR Manager, Education Week

iSolved HCM Software

Ideal for: Small- to mid-sized companies experiencing high growth

What makes it great: iSolved HCM provides employees and personnel with one interconnected platform for all their HR needs — from talent management to payroll. Regardless of the industry, the platform helps rapidly growing organizations support their workforce by improving the employee experience. Workers can access company documents, enroll in benefits programs, manage their PTO and workflow, and access their information anytime, anywhere. The system is known to be heavily safeguarded so employee information is kept safe at all times.

Noteworthy features:

  • Self-service portal

  • Web browser and mobile app (iOS and Android)

  • Configurable time clocks

  • Simplistic PTO management

  • Email integration

  • Employee lifecycle management

  • Performance appraisal

  • Easy document management

  • Onboarding features

  • Reliable security safeguards

Pricing: Prices start at $12 per employee monthly, which means Namely may get costly for organizations with thousands of workers. But for small- to mid-sized companies who want to provide the best HR experience for employees, users say this software hits the sweet spot.

What people are saying::
“Great option if you are looking for a software focused on HR and benefits without payroll. Easy to use if you are comfortable with benefits and HR admin. Easy layout without unnecessary frills. I can’t say there is anything negative about this software; perhaps it’s not the cheapest ever, but it’s uncomplicated and thorough.”

— Anonymous LinkedIn Review

Get Matched To the Best HRIS System
for Your Organization

If none of these options sound like a fit for your company, we can help you find the right one without spending endless amounts of time on research. Head over to our free vendor match tool and complete the three-step process to receive your complimentary software recommendation. It’s fast, easy, and cuts out the
guesswork — what more could you ask for? Get started today!

Get Free HRIS/Payroll Recommendations

More From Our Human Resources Blog

  • HR Webinar Snapshot

How to Select and Implement an HRIS You’ll Love

An Expert HR Panel Discussion HRIS solutions offer a large number of benefits for companies, including saving valuable HR time, attracting top talent, and even saving the company money. However, choosing the right HRIS for your company can be a [...]

  • covid testing

What Can HR Do if an Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19?

Since the coronavirus pandemic began in early 2020, businesses have been creating plans for dealing with the virus. Employees have been working remotely and social distancing rules have been in place. Offices have been observing additional cleanliness procedures and masks [...]

  • office politics

Should Your Employees Talk Politics in the Workplace?

This year’s an election year, which means that politics will be at the forefront of everyone’s minds. Political ads will be on TV and people will be deciding who they want to vote for. However, with so many people on [...]