Consumerization: New Growth, New Opportunities

April 17, 2012      By Pat Pickren

Whether it is consumers empowered to interact directly with businesses on a platform like Twitter or citizens bringing their collective voices and stories to the world on social and political issues, technology has empowered people to connect and communicate in ways never imagined.

And this is real power – not the technology – but unleashing people to be able to connect and create.

What does that mean for HR & IT? More than you may think. Consumerization has become one of the most popular made-up buzzwords of 2012, as new information technology that emerges with consumers – Twitter and Facebook are great examples – begins to change the way we do business.

Cloud computing and freemium (try it for free, pay later) models mean IT has seen employees and business leaders bring new applications and devices directly into the workplace to help get work done – once significant barriers to entry for new solutions are not just reduced, they’re completely gone. IT organizations that are staying relevant are embracing this and helping lead the charge to empower people – helping their teams make good decisions, integrating systems in the Cloud, and adapting constantly. Is this limited to IT? Definitely not! This same trend is happening within HR.

And as with technology, the consumerization of HR is all about people. Not people as records, not people as employees, but the real people who make “work” happen. HR and the HCM applications that have been at the core must adjust to this new reality by being connected and reaching out, not just looking in. Instead of thinking about terms like ‘enterprise adoption’ we need to think in terms of ‘what tools do my people use right now’ and ‘where does the data I need already exist’. As I’ve talked to many of our customers, I’ve talked about Ultimate’s capabilities to help connect and empower whether that is through collaboration systems or other standard connectors. The point is serving people where they work and collecting information where it exists in order to inform both the individual and the business.

These are exciting times to connect, collaborate and create. We need HCM systems and HCM leaders that will look outward and embrace these changes.


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