Why Use HR Software?

Written by Charlotte - 30 Jan 2018 Category: HR software

HR can be difficult. Work involves managing competing tasks and multiple processes that need to be carefully organised to fulfil the various demands placed upon the department.

HR can be difficult. Work involves managing competing tasks and multiple processes that need to be carefully organised to fulfil the various demands placed upon the department. HR software helps to lessen these difficulties; it makes managing people simple, saves time and stores data securely. All HR information is kept in one place, meaning it’s easy to find and provides a clear audit trail which shows any changes.

What are the key benefits?

  1. Save time, increase productivity: Implementing HR software can automate the majority of HR functions, such as leave requests, appraisals and reporting. Contract details and HR documents including passports, visas and qualifications are also stored electronically, meaning they are easy to find and simple to amend. Joining and Exiting processes are conducted through the system to ensure nothing gets missed. At a glance, you can view the remaining leave entitlement for members of staff, see how many days someone’s been off sick, or check the end date of a contract.
  2. Reduce errors: Human error within the HR department can result in severe legal complications.  A misplaced decimal point could cause serious issues with payroll and that extra day of holiday that was accidentally approved means a loss in both productivity and money.  HR software reduces error rates by automating the most common processes and allowing you to keep track, in real time, of any changes made to documents or data.
  3. Compliance: with the upcoming implementation of the GDPR, compliance is the principal concern of 2018. Organisations must comply with the new regulation, which makes managing employee details more complicated.  HR software provides simple methods for managing data and adhering to GDPR, allowing you to demonstrate how data has been processed, monitor the information kept on record,  and respond efficiently to any access requests.
  4. Report key metrics: People data is rapidly expanding as organisations begin to realise the value of analysing employee details to help drive decision making and performance.  HR software usually includes a reporting function which allows you to accurately measure information like headcount or total absences across a given period. You can use these findings to address issues within the HR department or to raise awareness in the wider organisation of any areas of concern which could impact strategies or projects.
  5. Improve Security:  Storing sensitive personal data in different locations, or relying heavily on paperwork for HR data presents a significant security risk. Removing paper documents from your organisation and working digitally is the first step to locking down sensitive paperwork. There’s no need to keep paper records if you’ve got electronic employee files.

The Affordable Solution

As outlined above, there are multiple benefits to implementing HR software in your organisation. Often, systems that provide such an advantage are too expensive for smaller organisations or non-profits. CiviHR is an affordable solution, designed to deliver all the benefits listed here and more to non-profit organisations. You can try out out our demo site today to see the advantages for yourself. Already convinced? Sign up here. It’s free to use until the end of June; after that, it will cost £1 per user, per month. It doesn't get more affordable than that. 

Self Service Portals: What They Do and Why They Matter

Written by Charlotte - 24 Jan 2018 Category: HR software

How many days holiday do I have left? I’ve moved house, can you update my address? What’s the sabbatical policy? How do I record my week off sick? These are the type of questions that HR professionals get asked every day.

How many days holiday do I have left? I’ve moved house, can you update my address? What’s the sabbatical policy? How do I record my week off sick? These are the type of questions that HR professionals get asked every day. Answering them is often time-consuming and admin heavy, with slow responses likely to cause friction between HR and frustrated employees while they wait to hear back.

Using an employee self-service portal is an efficient way of overcoming these difficulties. Until recently, HR software solutions that granted employees direct access to their information were only available to companies with large budgets and internal IT infrastructure. Now, thanks to the development of Cloud Computing, smaller organisations and non-profits can use employee self-service portals at more affordable rates.

What is a Self Service Portal?

Employee self-service portals provide a fast and direct way for staff to review and edit some of the data held on them by their employer. The type of data accessible via a portal tends to include name and address details, next of kin, leave entitlement and remaining balance. Most portals allow remote access, so employees can login while on the move or at home.

The Benefits

What are the benefits of using a self-service portal? Giving staff access to view and edit their details can help to increase engagement by removing the hassle from requests and encouraging employees to take responsibility for the data that’s relevant to them, as well as reducing admin time and ensuring personal details are kept up to date. Such efficiency means that you can stop wasting time working through these small but seemingly endless HR admin tasks and concentrate on the work that really matters.

Self-service portals can also help your organisation to remain compliant with the upcoming GDPR regulations by helping to improve data accuracy, manage data subject requests and hold data securely in one location.

What CiviHR Can Offer

The CiviHR system includes a self-service portal which employees can access if given a login to the site. It’s easy to use and employees can login anytime and anywhere, using a smartphone or laptop.Through this portal, staff can view their personal details and edit contact information for themselves and their emergency contacts. They can apply for leave, record sickness, read policy documents, look up colleague’s contact details in the directory, and view any tasks assigned to them, such as requirements to bring in a copy of their passport or attend an appraisal.

If you're curious about how the CiviHR self-service portal operates, why not test it out on our demo site? Select the staff-level login to see how the portal would appear to employees and the options available for managing your HR data.

Watching the Clock: will flexible working benefit employees?

Written by Charlotte - 17 Jan 2018 Category: HR software

Between 2016/2017, around 12.5 million working days were lost in the UK due to anxiety or depression.

Between 2016/2017, around 12.5 million working days were lost in the UK due to anxiety or depression. Could reducing the amount of hours in the working day or adopting flexible working policies contribute to improving employee well-being and overall satisfaction?

Is less more?

In 1930, the British economist, John Maynard Keynes, suggested that thanks to technological advancements and significant productivity gains, we would all be enjoying a 15-hour work week by 2030. With only 12 years to go till we hit Keynes prediction, things don’t seem to be entirely on track!  According to one study, due to the productivity boost brought about by computers, it’s now possible to complete what was the equivalent of a full workday in 1970 in 1.5 hours. We’re far more productive than Keynes ever imagined, yet our working hours show no signs of changing. Despite the continuing digital revolution and associated leaps in productivity, the average working week is still around 40 hours, with many employees working well beyond that.

Workplaces in Sweden have been trialling a seven hour working day, where the results showed that sick leave was reduced by 10%. Inspired by the Swedish trials, an agency in the UK has started giving one hour back to employees each day, without reducing pay.


If working fewer hours is not a viable option, perhaps the solution lies in flexible working? Flexible working involves an agreement between employer and employee where the standard working arrangements in terms of working hours, working location and the number of days worked per week are tailored to some degree to suit the employee. Traditionally associated with the rights of parents or carers, many organisations are starting to realise the potential benefits of offering flexible hours, such as increased productivity and staff retention, and are opening up flexible working options to the wider workforce.

Facilitate Change

Feeling inspired to try flexible working? If your organisation is looking to implement changes to its working structure, it’s vital to use appropriate technology which will easily facilitate this change and boost new ways of working.  CiviHR has built-in features which let you easily assign different working patterns to different member of staff. For example, one member of staff could be working a 40 hour week over compressed hours, with ten-hour days Monday-Thursday. Another might work half days on Monday and Friday from home. Whatever the days, leave is calculated automatically from each designated working pattern, removing the chaos that comes with trying to juggle different entitlements. You can test it out for yourself by creating different working patterns on our demo site.

About CiviHR

CiviHR is a project to create affordable HR software for non-profit organisations. By developing open source technology the benefits can be shared with non-profits everywhere.


CiviHR is a project to create affordable HR software for non-profit organisations. By developing open source technology the benefits can be shared with non-profits everywhere. 

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