Story of the week: When Will Computers Replace Human Resources Managers?

You’ve probably been there. The Human Resources (HC) manager beckons you into the cosy confines of his or her office and sits you down ‘to have a bit of a chat’ and see how things are going. Humans are good at this sort of instinctive responsiveness and empathy. That might be why it’s called Human Resources.
Of course HR directors don’t just sympathize and hand out employment termination lay-off envelopes (although they do appear to be quite comfortably ‘in the zone’ when they do), they also oversee all the major functions of personnel management from training to wages and more.
But, like any major business function in the post-millennial age, HR is feeling the weight of digital transformation. Somewhere down that road, the very label HR appears to be being replaced with HCM, standing for Human Capital Management (HCM); the world of personnel is changing for sure.

HCM replacing humans

Much of what we see in HCM leads us into cloud-based systems that are capable of shouldering a large proportion of workforce management functions that would previously have required a human. Cloud-based HCM systems can help manage vacation approvals, e-learning programs, employee pay and bonus remuneration, workforce productivity analytics etc.
But just how far can digital HCM go? Analyst firm IDC produces a 2018 IDC MarketScape assessments for Worldwide Integrated Talent Management, Performance Management, Learning Management and Compensation Management. Forget the overly flowery market segment tag (that’s often a sign of analyst houses wanting to cover as much potential ground as possible to sell reports), but do consider the breadth of ‘things’ in digital HCM that can be handled from a cloud-based position of centralized control.

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