An estimated 15,000 people attended the SHRM17 Annual Conference & Exposition in New Orleans this year, including a core group of PSIGEN team members, and the atmosphere was energizing.

This was the first year PSIGEN attended the SHRM HR industry event, and our entire team came home with a wealth of information on what challenges human resources professionals are facing every day—as well as a renewed sense of purpose and responsibility to our HR customers. Here are a few of the highlights and lessons from the event:

Top Challenges for Human Resources Professionals Today

In addition to the usual evergreen concerns such as engagement and retention, there were a few very specific challenges that kept coming up over and over again no matter who we talked to:

  • Compliance
  • Executive coaching
  • Healthcare implications
  • Shifting legal landscape

Although many of the HR professionals we met were confident they could weather these broad changes within the industry, they expressed frustration with everything on their plate. The question on everyone’s mind seemed to be: “How can I digest all of the information I need to and still remain productive?”

HR Technology is a Blessing—and a Curse

The most obvious answer to that question was “technology,” and the SHRM exhibitor floor bore that out. Many of the exhibitors were technology companies—the majority of which focused on human capital management—and nearly every one of the HR professionals visiting the PSIGEN booth were looking for novel ways in which to leverage technology and make their lives a little saner.

Technology continues to play a huge part in the transformation of human resources. While we were surprised to see 6,000-member organizations still using paper-based systems, roughly half of administrators we talked with already had some kind of electronic document management system in place. They knew the potential of advanced document capture, management, workflow, and business process automation. However, painful migrations, poor implementations and lackluster reporting obscured the original goal of transparency and visibility—leaving them wanting for technology solutions that were powerful yet simple and easy-to-use.

HR Technology That Accelerates Business

It was clear that every one of the HR professionals we spoke with cared deeply about their companies, but experienced a gap when it came to either culture or technology platforms that would enable them to do their job better.

It is incumbent on us as software providers to understand their business problems and to help them become the champions of their organizations. Because, at the end of the day, human resources professionals are looking for technology solutions that accelerate business.