HR software is the backbone of modern human resource departments, integrating functions such as talent acquisition, onboarding, employee benefits, and more into one seamless platform.
With the myriad responsibilities HR professionals juggle, staying organized without the aid of technology can be a formidable challenge.
These specialized programs are engineered to not only automate but also simplify the multitude of HR processes, making them more manageable and efficient. Below, we delve into some of the leading HR software options that are transforming the landscape for small businesses
On-Premise vs. Cloud Based HR Solutions: Pros and Cons
On-premise HR software is installed in your company’s own on-site server. You generally need an IT team or service to set up and manage this type of program. But it gives you full control over everything from implementation to security.
This option is often more fully featured and customizable than cloud based programs. Your IT team can set up the exact processes you want to use for everything from recruiting to training. And you generally pay for this type of software upfront, instead of incurring monthly subscription fees.
Cloud based HR solutions are stored on a remote server. You can access these solutions from anywhere, usually just by logging in through an internet browser or app. This is sometimes also referred to as SaaS (software-as-a-service).
Selecting cloud HR software option is often best for small companies that don’t have the bandwidth to set up and manage their own servers.
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It can also be beneficial for those who have remote employees. Your HR team and anyone who needs to access the program can do so with their own login information from any device.
Software for Various HR Functions
Different tools help the small and medium sized business manage different types of HR processes. Check out these types of human resources management software to figure out what your business needs the most to capitalize on the benefits of HR software.
- Application Tracking Solutions
- Recruiting Software
- Performance Management Software
- People Management
- Human Resource Information Systems or HRIS
Application Tracking Solutions
Navigating resumes and applications for a job opening can be daunting for HR teams. Application tracking software streamlines this process by automating the initial screening based on predefined criteria.
For instance, if proficiency in TikTok is essential for a social media management role, the software can filter candidates accordingly. This allows HR personnel to focus on a curated list of applicants, enhancing efficiency and effectiveness in the hiring process.
Additionally, the software can facilitate the organization of interview feedback and candidate evaluations, helping to keep the entire hiring cycle well-documented and transparent.
Recruiting software serves as an extended arm for talent acquisition specialists. It goes beyond the functionalities of a simple applicant tracking system by providing a suite of features designed to reach out and attract potential candidates.
Through integration with job boards and resume databases, this software widens the search for qualified candidates and maintains a reservoir of talent for both immediate and future staffing needs.
It allows for the tagging and noting of applicants who may not fit the current role but show promise for other positions within the company, creating a valuable pipeline for ongoing recruitment efforts.
Performance Management Software
Performance management software offers a dual advantage in the realm of HR technology. It aids in crafting precise job descriptions and setting measurable goals for prospective hires, which later transition into metrics for performance evaluation.
This sort of software becomes particularly useful when assessing the success of roles with quantifiable outputs, such as a social media manager’s performance on platforms like TikTok, by tracking metrics like viewer engagement and follower growth.
It serves as a cornerstone for both validating recruitment choices and guiding employee development post-hire.
People management software takes a more holistic approach to employee engagement, going beyond performance metrics to encompass aspects of company culture and team dynamics.
It allows for the recognition of achievements, such as a milestone in social media influence, and facilitates goal-setting and communication directly within the platform.
This type of software encourages a vibrant, interactive work environment where employees feel valued and connected to the broader goals of the organization.
Human Resource Information Systems or HRIS
HRIS stands at the core of the HR technology ecosystem. It is a comprehensive database that houses all vital employee information, from basic personal records to intricate details like salary structures, benefits, and performance reviews.
Acting as a central repository, an HRIS supports the HR team in managing the workforce efficiently and provides a wealth of data for informed decision-making.
In scenarios like identifying salary anomalies for high-performing individuals, such as a standout social media manager, an HRIS can be instrumental in guiding decisions related to promotions, raises, and other forms of employee recognition.
Key Considerations in HR Software
When selecting an HR software program, there are several crucial factors to consider to ensure it meets the unique needs of your small business. Below are the key points to keep in mind that will guide you through the selection process.
- Determine if an on-premise or cloud-based solution is best for your business size and IT capabilities.
- Assess whether the software provides specific HR functions relevant to your business needs, such as application tracking or performance management.
- Consider the ease of integration with your current systems and whether the software supports remote access for employees and HR managers.
- Evaluate the scalability of the software as your business grows and its ability to adapt to changing HR demands.
- Investigate the level of customer support and training resources available to ensure a smooth implementation and ongoing use.
Our Methodology: How We Chose the Best HR Software
Selecting the right HR software is critical for managing a company’s human resources functions effectively. The ideal HR software streamlines processes, maintains compliance, and improves employee engagement. Here’s our criterion for choosing the best HR software solutions:
Feature Set (10/10)
Comprehensive functionality that covers the full spectrum of HR tasks, from recruitment to retirement, is essential. We look for software with a robust feature set that addresses various HR needs.
User Experience (9/10)
Ease of use leads to better adoption across the organization. We prioritize HR software with intuitive interfaces that simplify complex HR processes.
Integration with Other Systems (9/10)
HR software should work seamlessly with other tools in the company’s tech stack. We value platforms that offer integration capabilities with payroll, accounting, or productivity software.
Customization Options (8/10)
Every business has unique HR needs. Software that allows customization in workflows, forms, and reports is crucial for tailoring to specific organizational requirements.
As companies grow, their HR software needs to scale with them. We look for solutions that are flexible and can accommodate growth without performance issues.
Compliance Features (8/10)
Maintaining compliance with labor laws and regulations is non-negotiable. We assess software for features that help businesses stay compliant automatically.
Data Security and Privacy (7/10)
Protecting employee data is of utmost importance. We consider the security measures and privacy policies of the software to ensure data integrity.
Reporting and Analytics (7/10)
Actionable insights can drive HR strategy. We favor software that provides comprehensive reporting tools and analytics to support decision-making.
Mobile Accessibility (7/10)
Access to HR functions on the go is increasingly important. We appreciate software with mobile capabilities for both managers and employees.
Cost and Pricing Transparency (6/10)
Budget considerations are always important. We evaluate the cost-effectiveness of HR software, looking for transparent pricing without hidden fees.
Customer Support (6/10)
Reliable support can be the difference between a smooth or frustrating experience. We consider the level and quality of customer support offered.
Implementation and Onboarding (6/10)
Getting started with new software can be challenging. We look for solutions that provide a streamlined implementation process and resources for onboarding.
The right HR software acts as the backbone for efficient human resource management. Our selection process is designed to guide businesses to software solutions that not only streamline HR processes but also enhance the overall strategic impact of the human resources function within the company.
30 Human Resource Software Solutions to Consider
Human resources software comes with a variety of tools. It ranges from performance management software to application tracking and beyond. If you’re seeking HR software for small business, look no further. Our list of 30 best HR software solutions will get you started.
Zenefits offers a cloud based solution that manages various HR functions. But it mainly focuses on payroll and benefits. You start by creating a directory of all employees. Then you can select benefits to offer, including anything from traditional healthcare to commuter perks.
Employees select their own plans and then those deductions are taken out automatically. In terms of payroll, the HR system can handle everything from time tracking to salary changes.
The Zenefits Essentials plan starts at $8 per employee per month. It includes time and scheduling features, a mobile app, and integrations with other software programs. The Growth plan is $14 per employee per month and adds compensation and performance management.
And the Zen plan is $21 per employee per month and includes employee engagement and morale features. Free trials are also available.
Namely is a compliance, payroll, and talent management HR solution in one. It starts with an HRIS database. Then you can record everything from time and attendance to engagement for each employee.
The platform also provides analytics so you can find areas of improvement. And there are built-in compliance features to help you stay up-to-date with human resource regulations.
Namely’s base plan is called HR Fundamentals. They then offer a complete plan that includes payroll, benefits, and time and attendance, along with a selection of advanced services. Plans are built custom for mid-sized businesses. So Namely doesn’t release pricing publicly.
UKG, or Ultimate Kronos Group, provides an array of human capital and workforce management solutions. The HR solutions are completely customizable. So you can choose the features and capabilities that are most relevant for your team.
And it’s built for global workforces. So it even works for large and multi-location companies. They even offer solutions for specific industries.
Since UKG’s solutions are customized to each client, there aren’t standard prices for each product. Reach out to the company to discuss creating a solution that works for your team. They also offer free demos.
4. SAP SuccessFactors
SAP SuccessFactors offers an array of HR software options for specific functions. For example, Employee Experience Management collects feedback. Core HR and Payroll offers time tracking and benefits. And Talent Management provides tools for recruiting and onboarding.
Each SAP SuccessFactors solution is customized to the needs of each client. And both cloud and on-premises options are available. So pricing varies. But free demos are available so you can see what HR solutions work best for your organization.
5. Cezanne HR
Cezanne HR provides a flexible, modular HR software product for mid-sized UK and global employers. The platform can help you streamline everything from recruiting to managing payroll. The interface is designed to help HR teams save time with configurable workflows.
You can also set up notifications and reports to stay up-to-date with all your employee data. They also offer personalized training and support.
Subscription fees are collected monthly and calculated based on features and number of employees. You can also request personalized quotes and demos.
6. Sage Business Cloud People
Sage Business Cloud People is a people management platform. You can upload employee data and use to to engage with your team through the entire hiring and management lifecycle. The HRIS database gives you a look at your entire team at once.
And you can even access analytics and data about their performance and engagement. You can also automate repetitive tasks and create compliance policies for your organization.
In addition to Sage Business Cloud People, the company offers tons of other business management software. So you can easily integrate these products and create a custom solution based on your needs. Pricing is also customized to each client. But you can schedule an interactive quote and demo to learn more.
7. Core HR
Core HR is an HR software program offered by The Access Group. The two brands are now integrated to provide a fully featured HR solution. Features include people management, payroll, recruiting, rewards and recognition, training, and career development.
Access also offers solutions tailored to specific needs and industries, like those for nonprofits and membership based businesses.
The Access Group offers a huge array of software programs for businesses, from cloud hosting to accounting. So you can build a custom plan with custom pricing. Contact the company to book a demo and quote.
Bob offers an HRIS and people management solution. It aims to drive positive culture and employee engagement through custom employee profiles and actions. For example, you can easily reward employees and/or add input based on performance for specific tasks.
It also provides a more laid back vibe than many HR software products. For example, you can send “shoutouts” and outline each employee’s “superpowers.”
Bob offers custom pricing based on the features you need. But they offer a few different levels to fit businesses of various sizes and industries. For example, there are specific products for managing culture, time tracking, and performance.
BambooHR is a human capital management solution that focuses on people, rather than numbers. The tool lets you store information about all of your employees. Then you can use it to track everything from performance to bonuses and raises.
So you can easily find areas where you need to communicate with or reward team members. There are also options for onboarding, hiring, and gathering employee feedback.
Pricing is calculate based on feedback and number of employees. You can request a demo or enjoy a 7-day free trial.
10. People HR
People HR is an HR management platform that automates repetitive tasks. So you can spend more time focusing on actually managing and supporting your team. For example, you can automate tracking sick days, approving holiday requests, and compiling turnover reports.
You can also use it for applicant tracking and measuring employee performance.
There are three plans available, ranging from $7 to $11 per employee per month. All plans include the essentials you need for HR management of both in-person and remote employees. But the upgraded plans offer advanced options like timesheets and custom benefits rules.
11. Workforce Hub
Workforce Hub is an HR software that’s tailored to small businesses. It’s a unified solution that includes HRIS, workforce management, compliance features, and insights to help you manage team members.
The HR software even provides solutions tailored to specific industries like construction, hospitality, and healthcare.
Workforce Hub’s basic plan starts at $6 per employee per month. It includes things like scheduling, applicant tracking, benefits, and PTO management.
You can also get a la carte services like time and attendance tracking for $4 per employee per month, or a dedicated applicant tracking system for $95 per company per month.
ADP, or Automatic Data Processing, offers an HR solution with businesses of various sizes in mind. You can build the exact HR software your business needs by choosing from a huge variety of functions. Options include payroll, time and attendance, benefits, outsourcing, and talent management capabilities.
Since HR management solutions are customized based on the needs of each business, pricing varies widely. But the company offers a huge array of levels with pricing for small and mid sized businesses in mind.
They also offer three free months of payroll processing for small businesses that sign up for new HR software solutions.
13. Oracle People Soft
Oracle PeopleSoft is a suite of HR software that runs in Oracle Cloud. Business owners and HR departments can create the interface that works best for their workflow and HR systems. For example, you might include a custom recruiting solution to manage hiring HR tasks.
Then you can also deploy analytics to provide stakeholders and managers with information they need about team performance.
Oracle PeopleSoft is available within Oracle Cloud. There’s an always free plan that provides two databases with basic tools. There’s also a paid option that comes with a 30-day free trial.
ClearCompany provides a talent management software that helps you manage everything from hiring to managing current employees. The platform is known for creating a unified experience, so you can manage various HR tasks from one central dashboard.
You can set goals for things like employee engagement and then track those within the platform. There are even features for things like compliance and feedback.
You can purchase access to the entire platform or just choose the HR systems that fit your needs. Pricing is customized based on your selections and the size of your business.
Freshteam is an HR software from Freshworks. The applicant tracking system focuses specifically on improving the hiring process. You can create job descriptions and listings then check and change their status throughout the process.
The HR software even lets you source candidates and gather information from social media. From there, enjoy features designed to help you easily screen candidates and engage with them.
Freshteam does offer a free version for organizations with up to 50 employees. It includes up to three job postings, a dedicated site, and email integrations. Paid plans range from $50 to $200 per month and offer advanced features like social recruiting and custom user roles.
Zira is a workforce management solution driven by AI. The HR software offers automation to save HR departments time on tasks like creating policies and performance incentives. Basically, you create policies where your employees are rewarded or engaged based on specific metrics.
Then the software tracks their activity for you to simplify the process. There are also solutions for scheduling, time and attendance, and team communication.
Zira pricing is customized based on features and organization size. They do offer free trials and demos for small businesses.
Rippling is a platform that lets you automate various core HR and IT functions. Its HR management features include payroll and benefits management, time and attendance, talent management, and the ability to manage employees’ apps and devices in one place.
Rippling starts at $8 per user per month. And you can customize plans based on your IT and HR management needs.
18. Deluxe Payroll
Deluxe Payroll is a flexible HR software focused on payroll and time tracking. You can upload and synchronize employee data to automate payroll functions like compliance and direct deposit.
The company also offers HR management solutions specifically designed for restaurants, contractors, and healthcare businesses.
You can purchase a basic Deluxe Payroll plan on its own or bundle it with other talent management and HR software. Payroll on its own is $39 per month plus $7 for each employee. The Blended HR management solution is $49 per month plus $7 per employee.
And the All-Access bundle, which includes advanced options like workers’ comp administration, is $39 per month plus $12 per employee.
Uzio offers an HR software complete with features for managing benefits, payroll, and time tracking. It starts with a fully integrated HRIS platform that organizes your employee data and makes it easy to automate HR management tasks.
It manages the repetitive daily HR functions like compliance and attendance management. So teams can focus more on strategic HR functions like fostering a positive company culture.
Uzio’s HR management services are offered a la carte. So you can get the exact HR tools your team needs. Payroll is $4.50 per employee per month. The HRIS system is $4 per employee per month. And time tracking is $2 per employee per month.
20. TimeClock Plus
TimeClock Plus is an HR software that focuses on time and attendance. The time clocks can be integrated into the systems you already use. And it offers advanced attendance management features like advanced leave and scheduling, shift differentials, and PTO management.
The Time and Attendance Essentials plan starts at $2.50 per employee per month. The full Workforce Management Professional solution costs $5 per employee per month and includes features like reporting and payroll exports.
You can also choose the specific HR management features you want and request a custom quote.
Paycor is an HR software that focuses on helping employers create positive working environments. Features include talent management, employee experience, benefits administration, and payroll management.
Basically, you get a central dashboard of all this information so you can easily automate key functions. Then your team can enjoy more time to focus on strategic HR initiatives that keep employees happy.
Paycor lets you choose the specific HR tools your team needs. So pricing is calculated custom for each business. The most basic plan starts at $99 per month for an organization. And they offer guided tours for those that want help creating custom plans.
Isolved is a human capital management solution that offers solutions for hiring, payroll management, and employee engagement. It provides a scalable solution for businesses of various sizes. And there are tons of integrations available so you can customize the experience to your specific team.
There’s also an employee portal and intranet to make it easy for team members to update information and make sure they get paid.
Isolved offers a full software market full of HR tech solutions. So companies can choose the exact human resources HR solutions they need. Free demos are also available.
23. HQ Platform
HQ Platform offers an all-inclusive HR software for construction, manufacturing, and skilled trade businesses. You get one central dashboard and an organizational chart to view your employee and business data.
You can even set budgets for projects, schedule and dispatch employees, and manage time cards and other assets for projects.
Plans are customized to the needs of each business. And free consultations are available to discuss pricing and features.
24. Dayforce HCM
Dayforce HCM is a cloud based human capital management HR software from Ceridian. The software company provides human resources management systems that allow you to store all employee information in one place.
It then generates data driven insights for things like attendance, salary, and benefits administration. So you can use those reports when making human resources and employee engagement decisions.
Pricing is customized based on features and business size. And specific solutions are offered for industries like public sector and sports entertainment. Free demos are also available.
Workday offers a cloud based enterprise management solution that includes human resources and finance solutions. When it comes to human resource software, the workforce management solution offers features specifically for today’s workplace.
For example, there are options for managing remote teams during the pandemic and improving diversity in workplaces.
Pricing is calculated based on business size and the finance and HR management features you need. The sales team offers custom consultations to help businesses find their ideal core HR solutions.
Arcoro offers modular human resource management software. There are tools for streamlining hiring and onboarding, managing workforce and compliance, and analyzing performance and employee engagement.
The human resources HR software also focuses on helping companies stay compliant in various industries.
Pricing is calculated based on number of employees, integrations, add-ons, and length of contract. Free demos are also available.
JazzHR is a recruiting software specifically for small and mid sized companies. The human resources software offers features for candidate sourcing, employer branding, interviewing, compliance, and collaborative hiring. It offers a customizable solution that is easy for companies to use.
The Hero plan built for small teams is $39 per month and includes up to three open jobs at once. The Plus plan is $229 per month and offers unlimited job postings.
And the Pro plan is $339 per month and offers streamlining features to safe human resources departments more time through the hiring process.
28. iCIMS Talent Cloud
iCIMS Talent Cloud is a talent acquisition software that helps companies attract, engage, and hire the most qualified employees. The human resources software even offers AI-enabled features to create career paths and talent profiles to boost employee engagement.
iCIMS Talent Cloud provides solutions for specific industries like finance, healthcare, manufacturing, and retail. And the software is customized and priced based on the needs of each business.
Eddy offers a HR solutions that are built for small and mid sized businesses. Designed to be easy to use, the platform includes features for hiring, onboarding, training, time tracking, PTO, payroll, and more.
They even offer specific solutions for people in various roles. So small business owners can manage their own employees. Or you can get solutions for HR managers or executives.
Pricing starts at $99 per month. And you can customize the exact features and capabilities your HR team needs to manage employees.
30. Performance Pro
Performance Pro offers an HR software program that helps businesses track and manage performance to improve results. The purpose-driven software provides an integrated management system that you can customized based on the needs and qualifications of each role.
Then you can track and monitor progress to make strategic HR decisions throughout the employee lifecycle. You can even send feedback and automate salary decisions based on performance metrics.
Businesses get to pick the HR features that are most essential for their operations. Those that want just one core HR solution pay between $2 and $5 per employee per month. The price decreases the larger your team is.
Those who want two HR features pay between $3 and $7 per employee per month. And those who want three features get custom pricing.
Comparing The top 10 HR Software Programs for Small Business
Selecting the right HR software is a crucial decision for any small business looking to streamline human resource management.
To simplify your selection process, we’ve compared the top 10 HR software programs, highlighting essential features and pricing to assist you in finding the ideal match for your business needs.
|Software Name||Key Features||Pricing||Best For|
|Zenefits||Payroll, benefits, mobile app||From $8/employee/month||Comprehensive benefits and payroll management|
|Namely||HRIS, compliance, analytics||Custom pricing||Mid-sized businesses seeking an all-in-one solution|
|TimeClock Plus||Time and attendance focus||From $2.50/employee/month||Advanced attendance management|
|BambooHR||Human capital management, feedback||Custom, based on features||Small to medium businesses focusing on growth|
|SAP SuccessFactors||Performance, core HR, payroll||Custom pricing||Scalable HR solutions for various functions|
|Freshteam||Applicant tracking, onboarding||Free version, paid from $50/month||Streamlining the hiring process|
|Oracle PeopleSoft||Customizable HR solutions, cloud-based||Free tier, plus paid options||Businesses seeking customizable cloud solutions|
|UKG (Ultimate Kronos Group)||Customizable, scalable solutions||Custom pricing||Businesses with complex or global HR needs|
|ADP Workforce Now||Payroll, compliance, talent management||Custom pricing||Businesses of all sizes looking for comprehensive HR solutions|
|Workday||Enterprise management, finance, HR||Custom pricing||Large businesses and enterprises needing robust HR management|
What is the best HR solution?
Determining the optimal HR software for your company hinges on understanding the specific requirements and challenges your HR department and employees face.
For a comprehensive HRIS solution, Zenefits and Namely are robust contenders, offering a broad spectrum of HR functionalities suitable for many modern businesses. TimeClock Plus could be the go-to for organizations with a large hourly workforce, as it streamlines time tracking and attendance.
BambooHR is renowned for its user-friendly interface and emphasis on employee experience, ideal for companies prioritizing a people-centric approach.
On the other hand, large enterprises needing a more extensive, on-premises solution might find SAP SuccessFactors aligns with their complex HR ecosystems.
What is the best free HR software for small business?
For small businesses operating on a tight budget, free HR software can be a game-changer. Freshteam offers a compelling suite focused on recruiting and applicant tracking, making it a solid option for small businesses looking to grow their teams efficiently.
Oracle PeopleSoft, while typically known for larger enterprises, offers customizable applications that can be scaled down to suit the fundamental HR needs of smaller organizations. Both platforms provide the essential tools required for effective HR management without the financial burden of paid software.
What is HR CRM?
HR CRM, or candidate relationship management, is a strategic tool designed for HR teams to cultivate and strengthen relationships with job candidates. It operates similarly to traditional customer relationship management systems but is tailored for the recruitment process.
This specialized software facilitates ongoing engagement with candidates, helping HR departments nurture talent pools and improve the quality of hire through relationship-building tactics. It’s an essential component for companies looking to enhance their recruitment strategy and candidate experience.
What is the difference between team management and talent management software?
While both team management and talent management software are integral parts of the broader human capital management framework, they serve distinct functions.
Team management software is primarily focused on the administrative aspects of HR for current employees, streamlining processes such as payroll, scheduling, and benefits administration.
Talent management software, meanwhile, extends into the realm of acquiring new talent, encompassing modules for recruiting, onboarding, and employee development. It’s designed to not just fill positions but to help businesses attract, retain, and cultivate top talent to meet organizational goals.
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