HR Automation: A step by step guide

DALL·E 2023-11-21 15.35.39

How to Automate HR Processes: A Step by Step Guide

Automating HR processes is no longer a luxury; it's a necessity. Leaders recognise the value of integrating automation into HR, especially in a world that thrives on efficiency. If you're looking to embark on this journey, here's a straightforward guide.

1. Identify What Needs Automation

Start by pinpointing the areas in HR that demand significant time but are routine. Common areas include:

  • Payroll
  • Recruitment
  • Employee onboarding
  • Attendance tracking
  • Performance reviews

Remember to ask yourself what exact problem you are solving. Automation for Automation's sake is not going to be helpful.

2. Work out your budget

To work out how much you can save the company with automation, and therefore a reasonable budget for your Automation tool, look at the time the routine tasks you hope to automate currently take each team member (an hour a day?, half an hour a day?).

Once you have total hours, work out the cost to the company using the average salary

Let's assume you have a team of 5 people and each person spends an hour a day on a routine task that could be automated.

5 person team = 25 hrs a week x 47 weeks = 1175hrs a year = 147 days approx

Average salary 40k = £153 a day

Total cost to the business: £22,491

2. Choose the Right Tools

Once you know what needs automation, and you know how much your saving could be, invest in specialized HR automation software. Some of the big names in the market (and who thinks they're great) include

  1. HR: Rated as the best overall HR software byForbes, HR is known for its versatility and comprehensive features​​.
  2. Paycor: Forbes also highlights Paycor as the best option for payroll services, catering to the specific payroll needs of businesses​​.
  3. BambooHR: Recognized for its employee self-service capabilities, BambooHR is a popular choice for companies looking to empower their employees with self-management tools​​.
  4. Rippling: Forbes notes Rippling as the best for automated workflows, indicating its strength in streamlining various HR processes through automation​​.
  5. ClickUp: Included in the list of best AI tools for HR management by ClickUp, this tool offers capabilities ranging from automating mundane tasks to providing in-depth insights for employee management​​.
  6. Gusto: iSpring Solutions mentions Gusto as a prominent cloud-based HR software, especially suited for small and medium-sized businesses to manage their administrative tasks effectively​​.
  7. ADP Workforce Now: Noted by People Managing People as the best enterprise-grade payroll and HR management software, it's particularly suitable for larger organizations​​.
  8. Zoho: Recognized by Make It Future as an all-in-one HR tool, Zoho provides a comprehensive HR management solution with features like recruitment, onboarding, time tracking, and benefits administration, ideal for small and medium-sized businesses​​.

3. Integrate AI Where Necessary

AI isn't just a buzzword. It's the backbone of advanced HR automation tools. AI can:

  • Analyze resumes, ranking them based on job requirements.
  • Predict employee behavior, helping in talent retention.
  • Offer chatbot services for employee queries.

Companies such as IBM's Watson Talent and Pymetrics utilize AI to revolutionize HR processes.

4. Train Your Team

Introducing new tools? Ensure your HR team is well-trained. This doesn't just mean knowing how to use the software but understanding its potential and limitations.

5. Regularly Review & Update

Automation tools evolve. Stay updated with the latest trends, and make necessary adjustments. Consider regular feedback sessions with your HR team to understand any challenges or needs.

6. Measure Success

Track the efficiency of the newly automated processes. Are recruitments faster? Is payroll error-free? Monitoring these metrics will help you understand the real-time benefits of automation. You will most likely need to build a cost benefit analysis. Tracking the right metrics will help you work out if it has worked.

7. Maintain the Human Touch

Remember, while automation is powerful, the human element in HR is irreplaceable. Use automation to eliminate repetitive tasks, but always prioritize human judgment and interaction in areas that need them.


HR automation, especially when powered by AI, is transformative. It streamlines operations, saves time, and reduces errors. By choosing the right tools and strategies, leaders can ensure their HR departments are efficient and poised for future challenges. Automation is the way forward, but it's essential to strike the right balance with the personal touch that only humans can provide.