Technology is a key factor in shared services

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Technology is often a deciding factor in the adoption of shared services, and 73% of public sector organisations believe that supporting technology is ‘important’ or ‘very important’ when implementing a shared service for HR and payroll, according to new UK research.

The report from workforce solutions provider, MidlandHR, HR and payroll shared services in the public sector – perceptions and realities, examined the opinions of over 100 UK public sector representatives, from functions spanning HR, payroll, finance, purchasing and IT.

Karen Bull, product strategy manager at MidlandHR, said “With two in five organisations (37%) planning to implement shared services in the next two years, they’ll need to ensure that their supporting technology is process driven and highly configurable. This will enable multi-organisational processing in one environment.”

The results of the MidlandHR survey report demonstrated that the most important factor to consider when creating shared services was to have efficient, yet flexible processes.

In organisations already sharing services, two of the three main challenges identified were how to develop new skills to accommodate the software and technical issues, and having enough time to invest in getting the processes running smoothly.

The majority of surveyed organisations, (84%), felt it was very important to redesign processes as part of a shared HR and payroll service.

Bull said that systems without a high level of configurability will dictate generic, homogenous processes that don’t fit any of the organisations’ needs.

She added, “It’s vital to allow organisations the option to be individually configured. The fact that 86% of those sharing required individual configuration demonstrates how critical it is to the success of shared service ventures.”

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