A HRIS offers a lot of benefits to a company. It can streamline processes and automate what used to be done manually. Implementing a HRIS can save a company a lot of time and money. While typically you get what you pay for when it comes to a HRIS, paying a sum upfront or even paying for a monthly subscription service may not be in the budget. There may be some free options that can meet your companies HRIS needs until such time a more comprehensive system is in the budget.
There are still a lot of HRIS options available, even if you’re looking only for completely free solutions. Before you get started on your research into the available HRIS options, the first step is to know what features will be most important to your company. Consider your current HR processes and look for the tasks that are the most time-consuming. Those are the tasks that could benefit the most from automation.
Once you’ve determined what HRIS features are the most important to your company, you can start the process of researching different HRIS options. HRPayrollSystems.net works with top HRIS vendors to match customers with the software that will best fit their needs. For those who don’t have a HRIS in their budget at the moment, we’ve compiled the following list of the best free HR software solutions along with the pros and cons of each one.
Bitrix24 is a cloud-based software suite designed for managing small businesses. It offers 35 different tools that can help businesses with project management, HR processes, and even customer relationship management. It’s flexible enough to be used by a variety of business sizes, from small businesses with fewer than 50 employees to large businesses with more than 1,000 staff members.
Bitrix24 does have a variety of different paid packages, which means that its free version will have limitations on the features available. However, Bitrix24 does offer a lot of features with its free version. We include this in our list of free HR software platforms because so much is available on the free version.
- Customer relationship management
- Unlimited leads, companies, contacts, and deals
- Quotes and invoices
- Product catalogs
- Kanban boards
- Custom stages, statuses, and timeline
- Simple mode and classic mode
- Lead to contact, deal, or company conversion
- Quote to invoice conversion
- Client profiles
- CRM chat
- Task and project management
- Unlimited tasks and projects
- Automated reminders
- Mobile tasks (both iOS and Android)
- Email to task and task to email communication
- Website (limit: 1)
- Unlimited web pages
- Visual website editor
- Live chat
- Website templates
- Online store (limit: 1)
- Limit of 100 products
- Templates for coupons and discounts
- Calculator for shipping costs
- Online payment processing
- Communication center
- Audio calls
- Group chats
- Emails to post
- Post view counter
- Data administration
- Limit: 5gb of space
- Local and online editing
- Integration with other Drives (Google Drive, One Drive, etc.)
- File synching
- Company and group drives
- Video conversion up to 300mb
- File viewer
- Employee directory
- Company knowledgebase (limit: 1)
- Account administrator (limit: 1)
- Two-factor authentication
- Customer support
The expansive list of features available with the free version is a definite pro. Users of Bitrix24 found the timekeeping features and employee directory to be particularly useful. The software also provides a robust set of lead management and customer relationship management tools with its free version. It also offers considerable document and task management tools for free. It can be a good tool for a small- to mid-size business that doesn’t have a lot of room in the budget for a paid HRIS.
With so many different tools available, even the free version can get a bit overwhelming. User reviews of Bitrix24 have complained about the clunky and complicated user interface, which can take some time to learn how to use. Customer support with the vendor is also limited. According to reviews, the support service requires translation, which can result in errors, and the support techs are often inexperienced.
There are also limitations to the amount of storage space available. 5gb of space can be taken up very quickly. In addition, there are only 12 users with the free version. In practice, this also limits the number of employees in the system as well. Only twelve people could use the employee self-service portal. Due to the size and user limitations, this means that companies could quickly outgrow the free version and would have to switch to the paid version.
Orange HRM Open Source
OrangeHRM’s free version is open-source software that provides all of the same features as its paid, cloud-based version. It’s ideal for small and medium businesses that are able to host the software themselves. OrangeHRM Open Source doesn’t limit its features from the paid version to the free one, offering all features on both versions. Companies using OrangeHRM can use the software to manage their employee database, track time and attendance, offer a careers page, provide employee performance reviews, and much, much more.
- Request desk
- Online training
- Graphical reports
- Personnel management
- Time off management
- Time and attendance tracking
- Expenses tracking
- Disciplinary management
- System administrator and different user account roles
- Insurance and benefits
- Training modules
- Document management
- Succession planning and employee development
- Mobile app
- Careers page
If your company has the resources to install and host the open-source software yourselves, then OrangeHRM Open Source can be a great resource. Instead of having to pay for the cloud-based version, you can host the software on your own internal servers. It’s widely used by many companies around the world and has over 3.5 million users. Many have found it useful in designing their hiring workflows, managing changes within their organization, and more.
Because OrangeHRM’s free version is open source, that means that you can get the software for free. However, unlike with a typical HRIS, companies using OrangeHRM’s open-source version have to install, implement, and host the software themselves. Servers and bandwidth to host the software do cost money, even if the software itself doesn’t. Plus, your company would need to have someone on staff with technical and computer knowledge to support the software. If you wanted it to be cloud-based, you would also have to provide your own cloud server.
There are also some limitations to the functionality of the system. There’s no payroll integration, so any data that needs to be both in a payroll system and OrangeHRM Open Source would need to be manually added to both. Plus, there are customization limitations. Fields for the employee database and workflow management tool, for example, are pre-set and can’t be customized.
With the Open Source version of OrangeHRM, there’s also no customer support from OrangeHRM. If you have questions or need help with the open-source software, you would have to pay extra for it. Any bug fixes or security updates might also come with a cost. OrangeHRM Open Source software may be completely free, but there are other costs, both monetary and in valuable employee time, that may limit its practicality for many smaller businesses.
WebHR is a free, cloud-based HR software. The free version of the software can support up to five users. It advertises itself as “social HR” software and can be ideal for a small business. It offers a variety of features with its free version, including time and attendance tracking, onboarding, and more. It’s a social HR software because of its built-in messenger feature, which can also be used for groups, as well as its discussion forums where employees can post questions and what’s on their minds.
- Time and attendance tracking
- Time off tracking
- Employee self-service portal
- File and document management
- Mobile app
- Built-in messenger
- Employee discussion forums
The social features of WebHR can help make communication within your organization easier. The messenger feature allows employees to quickly get in touch with each other, no matter where in the company or even where in the world they work. Remote employees can stay in touch with each other and anyone working on-site. Groups of employees who are working together, whether that’s for a project or permanently, can also communicate in a chat specific to their group. Reviews of WebHR have lauded its customizable reports.
Users of WebHR have also found the software’s payroll and employee information features to be useful. Although the free version does have more limited features than the paid version, WebHR does offer a comprehensive set of features that can handle a lot of a company’s HR processes.
With the free version of WebHR, you can only have five users, which means that you can only have five employees in the system. If your business has more than five employees, to use WebHR, you would have to start paying $2 per additional employee. Other limitations of the free version include not being able to upload your own documents, you can only have three departments within the system, and there are a limited number of attendance entries in the attendance tracking feature. The free version is really only a viable choice for start-ups and very small companies. Even small companies could quickly outgrow the free version.
On top of that, there are some features that are limited to the paid version only. Companies using WebHR have reported that in the recruiting feature, there isn’t a way to screen candidates by educational level. For companies that have specific education requirements for certain positions, this can make the recruiting process more difficult and take longer.