A WSR BOOK REVIEW
Introduction to HR Technologies:
Understand How to Use Technology to Improve Performance and Processes 1
By Stacey Harris, HRIP
Chief Research Officer, Managing Partner at Sapient Insights Group | Author | Thought Leader
Publisher: Kogan Page, 2021. ISBN-13: 978-1789665277
Reviewed by Dennis Hill, Ph.D., HRIP
Sagacity LLC | IHRIM | Consortium DeHR
October 28, 2022
Few areas in the tech field have undergone more rapid change in recent years than solutions and practices related to human resources. Now that makes an excellent time to release a book on the subject which Stacey Harris of Sapient Insights Group has done very well.
Introduction to HR Technologies provides HR and technology practitioners with a well-defined roadmap. Harris writes clearly and concisely about core HR processes that have grown dependent upon technology to smoothly operate, and as a skilled apologist for the profession, Harris being a certified HR Information Professional, she offers hands-on analysis from the trenches of experience.
From outlining the HR Tech field macroscopically to deep diving into every common area of HR service delivery, Harris does a “great job of laying out the strategic and practical realities” of HR Technology and how to leverage these solutions to meet business objectives that achieve greater performance levels. While there are many books published separately on human resources and information technology, Harris effectively treats these syncretic disciplines uniquely perspective as an HR-Tech practitioner and active researcher in the field – a refreshing change from the lofty and theoretical assertions of most books.
Introduction to HR Technologies includes eleven readable chapters in about 200 pages on Kindle and in hardcover and paperback editions. Harris’ history of HR Tech couches modern IT applications in HR with understandable definitions, illustrative examples, and a plethora of endnotes. Her perspective is holistic with one eye on the state of the market and the other on the state-of-the-art. She effectively blends syncretic objects – people and technology – into a new definition of the workforce where each is supporting and supportive of the other. Successfully deploying specific solutions rests on the shoulders of the people who use them. Likewise, people can excel when properly equipped to do so.
Harris writes the most compelling reason HR Technology is a worthwhile field to study, develop, and pursue, giving insight into her motivations for capturing, curating, and creatively composing this tome. “…organizations and leaders are held accountable for their decisions even if they used a technology to help them make those decisions.” Few departments have ever had the governance and operational responsibilities found in HR today, and Introduction to HR Technologies may be as foundational as Black’s Law Dictionary to the legal professional or Milton Friedman’s Economics in Theory and Practice for modern economists.
Harris expertly articulates the benefits of technology across the spectrum of human resource service delivery throughout the enterprise, addressing the legal and moral implications at times. Yet, her treatment of the subject matter is foundational and, therefore, timeless, making Harris’ Introduction to HR Technologies an excellent reference for years to come. Harris has crafted a veritable “book of knowledge” for the HR Tech professional that should find its place on the shelf in every HR office and IT department.
About the media creator/author, Stacey Harris, HRIP.
Stacey Harris is the Chief Research Officer and a Managing Partner at Sapient Insights Group. She has been a leading member of the HR practices and technology research community since 2007, producing groundbreaking research on high-impact HR organizations, enterprise HR technology, and key practices across the talent management spectrum. Stacey previously served as vice president of research and analytics for Sierra-Cedar, where she oversaw Sierra-Cedar’s Annual HR Systems Survey and Research. She can be reached at [email protected].