I live in a vintage condo with relatively small rooms. I have been looking to upgrade the TV in our den to something larger and more modern. There are many options for TVs out there, but it is hard to find good furniture to house it, especially if you have strict limitations on the size of that furniture. Large TVs are not a new concept. They have been around for several years. Yet, furniture makers have not seemed to wake up to this fact. Most of the Entertainment Armoires out there are made for traditional TVs up to 36" diagonal. There is little furniture available for the larger TVs and what is available tends to be oversized (sized so it can accomodate up to a 60" TV). There are not good options in between. Rant over.
So, you are probably wondering what this has to do with HCM. Good question. I'm getting there. I had done some posts last week about future trends in HCM. These are important things to keep an eye on. However, unless you want to be an early adopter, they are not things that you need to act on today (other than getting your feet wet with them). There is still plenty to do in the here and now. Take talent management for example. Talent management applications are not new. They have been around awhile -- like home entertainment furniture (see I told you I would get there). We can automate of talent management processes pretty well today. That is good. However, how well do they support how your organization wants to manage talent? Could the fit be better?
Yes, it could be better and it will get better. Unlike furniture makers, software vendors are good at making the fit better over time. As more customers use the products, vendors get more feedback on what is needed and add it to the product. This is a good virtuous cycle. However, there is a dark side. The way those features get incorporated into products is by adding more and more configuration options and tables. This increases the flexibility of the product, but also the complexity. That is what has happened with ERP/HRMS solutions. It takes a lot of expertise (i.e., expensive consulting resources) to understand how to configure the applications so they fit your needs. I worry that talent management applications may also end up evolving that way. Flexibility is definitely needed, but not at the expense of simplicity. There is some hope on the horizon: service-oriented architecture. I will not go into all of the technical details in this post (that will be some future Gartner research). Suffice to say for now, ask your vendors what steps they are taking to keep their products simple to use and configure as the demand for greater flexibility and better fit increases. Hopefully, they will have better answers than the furniture makers.