Why the Worldwide Workforce Needs a Superior HXM Platform


Adil Shabbir, chief technology & product officer at Atlas, explains why a true platform play delivers a superior HXM solution

The Human Capital Management (HCM) and Human Resources Technology (HR Tech) landscape reveal exciting trends, including where many vendors in the space are actively positioning themselves as platforms pliable enough to meet most, if not all, customer needs in one place.

Platform, Platform, Everywhere

An in-depth look at the current Human Capital Management (HCM) and Human Resources Technology (HR Tech) landscape reveals a few interesting trends. A recurring one is that many vendors in the space are actively positioning themselves as platforms pliable enough to meet most if not all, customer needs in one place. But as you dig deeper, you realize that many are primarily cloud enterprise software companies with proprietary product and service offerings. While these offerings serve business needs and vary from point solutions to broader and more substantial capabilities, the net effect is the same – buyers get locked into and must work in the vendor’s ecosystem. 

Now, your HR team is likely using HCM software to manage the hire-to-retire lifecycle of the organization’s talent pool. While the range of functionality and services offered by this HCM software provider may be valuable in managing many essential aspects of the employee lifecycle, they are limited to what is provided out of the box by the HCM vendor. If your HCM software offers a native employee onboarding or payment solution, that is the only one available. Essentially, what you see is what you get, and there aren’t any additional options on the table.

Contrast the above scenario with a true platform with industry-leading capability that doesn’t limit customer choice to its proprietary offerings. The strength of such a platform lies not only in its offerings but also in its ability to extend the value chain by seamlessly connecting with additive products and services. Each newly developed capability and solution provider in the platform’s network or ecosystem opens avenues for creatively combining or bundling offerings – exponentially growing the platform’s value for its user base.  

See More: Why Predictive Analytics is a Game Changer for Human Capital Management

Platforms and the Network Effect 

As many of you know, the exponential growth in value described above is the power of the Network EffectOpens a new window  or Metcalfe’s LawOpens a new window  at play. This phenomenon is foundational to social platforms such as LinkedIn and Instagram and applies to the burgeoning cyberspace and the rapidly evolving metaverse. On social media, the adage “the more, the merrier” applies literally when your and my connections become ours over time – growing our networks and enhancing our reach. 

The network effect is also one of the main reasons behind the proliferation of smartphones across the globe. Apple and Google are leaders in the smartphone space and have created two of the most successful digital platforms in the world – the Apple App Store and Google Play. The collective success of both platforms has served as the foundation for – and coined the term – App Economy. In addition to all the apps, like phone and text, that come natively with smartphones, many companies and independent developers have created millions of apps currently hosted by the App Store and Google Play. Billions of people across the globe use various combinations of these apps for entertainment and to generate livelihoods for themselves and their families. And as new entrants join the digital platform, every participant gains access to an ever-increasing array of connections, capabilities, goods, and services, enhancing the platform’s value for all participants. According to qualified estimates, Apps in the Apple App Store created 2.2 million U.S. jobs andOpens a new window facilitated $643 billion in commerce in 2021Opens a new window . 

The Human Experience Management Platform

Now, let’s extend the platform play to HCM/HR Tech. When aligned with human-centered design principles, an HCM/HR Tech platform can connect people, processes, technology, and functional capability in a frictionless way to elevate human experiences for all participants. This includes businesses, the talent pool they strive to hire and retain, and the myriad of service providers that are additive to the value chain. 

The platform becomes the conduit for the connection and establishes trust between its participants and capabilities without controlling the possibilities for mutually beneficial interaction. With participants gaining control over how they want to connect for growth, true empowerment through choice and access is pushed downstream to the actual companies and people using it, raising the bar on their experiences. They move from a very constrained tech solution to a Human Experience Management (HXM) platform – an ecosystem where they can connect to whatever talent or service is needed, whenever and wherever they need it. 

With human-centered design at the heart of the HXM platform, it can create a superior user experience by tapping into the user’s in-the-moment need for empowerment, effectiveness and efficiency, accessibility and well-being, and the ability to understand and leverage the most innovative means possible to drive the desired results. For the employer, those desired results may be deciding where and how to expand globally and then onboard, compliantly manage and pay their talent pool. For the talent, it may be the ease of joining growing companies that value their contribution and nurture their growth. The HXM platform leverages insights from various data sources to provide rewarding, personalized, and context-sensitive user experiences. These data sources include information covering the business, economic, demographic, compliance, and geopolitical environment across the globe, as well as aggregated data around users, their operating environment, and transaction patterns within the company, alongside personal preferences. 

There is a caveat, however. With increased traction, platforms can also become congested, which may sound like a good problem, but it does run the risk of damaging the user experience. Therefore, engaging in an effective platform play requires the provider to flexibly and cost-effectively scale up to accommodate a growing stakeholder and user base while continuing to deliver delightful user experiences. In addition, all curated user experiences delivered by the platform must provide built-in guardrails and best practices that guarantee secure, private, and compliant interactions between all stakeholders. 

While it requires focused and continued effort, a true HXM platform – when built well – can also serve as the ultimate marketplace. It can frictionlessly connect the demand and supply side of talent acquisition, meeting every stakeholder where they are in their people, process, and technology journey – rather than forcing complex integration patterns or heavy lifting around change management initiatives required to make things work. 

Within this HXM ecosystem, employers and talent choose how they connect and develop their relationships over time – across borders, cultures, and languages. Employers experience a shift from constrained solutions to frictionless access to the global talent pool, enabling global communities to experience unhindered participation in the worldwide workforce, helping them flourish regardless of geography. This enhances the value delivered to all involved, making it a win-win for everyone.  

How do you think HXM can elevate human experiences for the worldwide workforce? Let us know on FacebookOpens a new window , TwitterOpens a new window , and LinkedInOpens a new window . 

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