hris workflow

Workflow is the term given to the series of activities used by a company to complete a task. When speaking of HR, the tasks that are completed using workflow systems are things like hiring, firing, promoting, and training. HRIS systems are mainly valuable to organizations because they can save companies money by automating HR workflow processes.

Configuring HRIS for Optimal Workflow

Every company is unique in the way that it manages people. While regulations and laws may dictate certain aspects of hiring, firing, and employee management, the rest can be handled in such a way that the organization sees maximum benefit and utilizes the least amount of time and money. HRIS software configuration is critical to achieving these results, so time should be spent researching and changing configurations until the desired HR processes are automated and streamlined.

Relieving HR Personnel

Many organizations make the mistake of using HRIS mainly for data storage, missing opportunities to improve workflow. If HR professionals spend a majority of their time completing routine daily tasks, it may be a sign that HRIS are not being used to the extent of the systems’ potential. Freeing up HR professionals’ time by automating whatever processes can be automated can help the entire company function at a higher level.

Automating Approval Processes

The process of gathering the necessary approvals to move forward with many aspects of human resources management can be made much simpler using HRIS. Without HRIS automation, emails or paper requests may be sent from HR to managers (or vice versa) regarding salary increases, possible new hires, or potential terminations. When managers are busy or other issues come up, these requests can be overlooked or take a long time to be approved.

With the proper configuration, the approval processes used for human resources management can be greatly simplified. HRIS professionals can build approvals into the system so that the “transaction” (hire, transfer, etc) cannot move forward until the appropriate party has signed off on the transaction. Each transaction can then be configured so the appropriate parties are notified instantly regarding the requested approval, required only that the party sign in and click “approve” for the transaction to move forward.


If a HRIS dies not have the capability to automate HR workflow, it may not be the right system for the organization. If the reason for the deficiency is that the HRIS is old or that the system does not contain the desired functionality, it may be time for the organization to invest in upgrading to a HRIS that can perform the desired functions.

Improving Workflow Processes

It is critical that workflow processes be evaluated and made as efficient as possible before bringing HRIS into the picture. HRIS can help to improve processes by automating them and providing instant notifications, but if the processes are inherently flawed, HRIS will not be able to achieve maximum workflow efficiency. Each HR task should have a set process in place that is (or will be) followed on a consistent basis before that process is automated using HRIS.