Dear HR Technology Vendors: Please Stop Looking at Your Competitors
Too often, HCM technology solution providers focus solely on what competitors are doing instead of what customers want. Instead, start looking at your customers and consider enhancements that will actually improve efficiency, strengthen processes and drive business outcomes.
Of course, there are some exceptions. Talent acquisition, for example, is one area where several providers have disrupted the market by rejecting traditional solutions and focusing on what job seekers and employers need rather than what competitors are offering. Companies such as HireVue, Entelo, Smashfly and QueSocial are a few companies that challenge what isn’t working in recruitment and offer innovation to drive efficiency.
For other providers stuck in a crowded market, my recommendation is to listen to your customers, and focus on what challenges companies might be facing. One way to achieve this goal is to think outside the box … think outside HCM. Take a look — not at your direct competitors — but at other technology companies that your candidates and employees may be using in their personal lives. Here are a few companies outside of HCM (some you most likely know well):
- Mint.com: This free site allows individuals to easily manage their finances and stay informed of their spending habits. It’s simple to use, intuitive and allows individuals to see what is easily going on in real-time. Imagine something as simple for areas such as payroll or even recruitment advertising spend. Or… better yet, career management.
- CO Everywhere: If you are not yet using CO, I’m warning you might become addicted. This app created by Tony Longo and his team in Boston allows users to view all pictures and images from certain regions in order to immerse yourself in the social activity there and stay connected – maybe your hometown, current town, vacation spot or dream destination. Imagine companies using a similar tool to tap into a talent community or candidates using this tool to stay connected to potential employers.
- Uber: If you travel or live near a city, chances are you use Uber. It allows you the convenience when you are traveling of never worrying about finding a ride and also lets drivers make money on their own schedule. If you are wondering how this model might apply to the workforce, check out what Coca-Cola is doing with Wonolo and its employment app.
One reason that the HCM space has become so commoditized is that providers look at solutions with a narrow view. By putting employees and candidates first and increasing efficiency, HCM technology stands a chance at offering true innovation in the market.