Aside from the usual conversation about political correctness, Tom Cruise movies and accents, we also chatted about some of the new HR-related technology that’s available for FDs.

Berry says we’re going to see more companies saying goodbye to regular paper pay slips. It’s already happening and employees who receive online pay slips are pretty happy with the system, apparently. Berry says it’s a winning idea given the number of who have access to the internet, the growth in online banking and also the ease with which it allows people to access their pay information.

Then there’s software that allows you to store and analyse snapshots of people-related data. This can be anything from net pay to productivity to attendance. Berry says it gives you “greater visibility” of management information.

Expenses can now be lodged online, which means data is neatly captured and only needs to be verified. Berry says this makes it easier to analyse expenses and catch abnormalities. He says this piece of software gave Computers in Personnel some insight into where its employees were spending money locally, prompting the company to ask local restaurants for a better deal on business meals!

There’s also a solution for illness. Employees call a number when they’re sick and then the details are emailed to their line managers who can return the call when it’s convenient. This data is also automatically captured so it’s easier to identify when an employee is away a lot. If someone is on extended sick leave, it will automatically send a notification to the insurance company.

It’s all very nifty and another sign automation is the way of the future.

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