Definition of Employee Self Service:
Employee self-service (ESS) is a feature that enables employees to access and store all their documents in a single place. Employees can access their employment related documents, time-off records, salary statements etc, while Managers can additionally schedule interviews and share feedback, look into timesheets, PTOs and performance records of their employees. Without ESS, this involves manual labour where the HR department takes care of the entire paperwork, or managing it on excel sheets and emails.
ESS is usually an inbuilt feature of HRIS software, which can help save time and increase efficiency. It helps in empowering employees to manage their HR processes with no intervention from the HR department.
Benefits of using Employee self service:
- Reduced cost for the company: When you have an allocated system that can take care of simple tasks all by itself, it gives more time for HR to focus on the more important ones. Further, when you are already paying for HRIS software, it will be a huge cost-saver if it comes with ESS.
- Employee satisfaction: Employees like it when they can do all their tasks by themselves, without waiting for anyone or depend on paperwork.
- Easy access to paperwork: It can get quite frustrating to depend on somebody’s time to get your work done. With ESS, that hassle is taken care of.
- No more erroneous information: Employees can fill all their information by themselves and update it whenever they have to, thereby avoiding data entry errors.
- HR can focus on more important tasks: When they no longer need to do the paperwork, they can focus their time and energy on more tasks that can help with the growth of the company.
- Accelerates hiring with employee referrals: When employees are happy at the current workplace, they will always refer their friends and family to the company as well. With ESS, they can do it in a few clicks, making it easier for the HR team to get talent.
How does ESS work?
ESS can help employees:
- Record time-offs
- View their in and out times.
- View and access their employment documents and performance evaluations.
- View and access their payslips and tax documents
- Access training documents and company policies
- View job openings and refer candidates to HR.
Besides the above tasks, managers and leaders can:
- Access to time-off reports
- Approve time-offs of their employees.
- Setup OKRs and performance metrics for employees.
- Receive anniversary and birthday notifications.
Common challenges while implementing ESS
ESS can be a new territory to a lot of your employees. While it has its own benefits, people are generally hesitant to try new things and would always prefer the old way of work. Here are some challenges that HRs face making the transition to ESS:
- Security concerns: ESS provides access to some confidential information regarding the employees and the company. It is important to ensure that your service provider guarantees data privacy and security.
- Training your employees: While it is necessary to opt for a user friendly system, companies still need to train employees on the how-to’s and best practices for using the system, along with tips to handle troubleshooting.
- Undefined goals and expectations from the ESS: Executives are unclear about what they want the system to achieve. As a result, you may end spending on the wrong tool, and can further frustrate the employees.