HR Team Gathered Around Their Laptops

How technology can help power up your people strategy in the energy and utilities sector

How technology can help power up your people strategy in the energy and utilities sector

6 Minute Read

Your HR team needs to achieve many goals to help your organization remain competitive in the energy and utilities sector. Technology can help measure the success of your organizational growth and EDI initiatives. However, technology cannot succeed without the right strategy behind it.

Implementing technology strategically to support your HR objectives involves:

  • Assessing your current state
  • Defining your desired state
  • Implementing your solution
  • Continued monitoring, evaluation, and adjustment

Following these steps can help equip your organization with the tools and strategy it needs to overcome the predicted workforce challenges in the energy and utilities sector.

Consulting Leader, Energy and Utilities
Manager, Consulting Services - DE&I

Your HR team has many goals it needs to achieve to help your organization remain competitive in the energy and utilities sector. You may be focused on growth — or on reaching equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) objectives to ensure your organization attracts the top talent it needs to innovate in an evolving landscape. However, it may be difficult to reach these goals as workforce and resourcing challenges loom on the horizon.

Technology can provide valuable support to help you reach both your organizational growth and EDI initiatives. However, technology cannot succeed without the right strategy to support it. Let’s discuss how technology platforms can benefit your HR efforts — and review a strategy to help you implement technology within your organization to reach your workforce goals.

How can technology support your goals for your workforce?

The transition to net-zero electricity is transforming the energy and utilities sector. Many organizations are upgrading the capabilities of their workforce to remain competitive — and have set targets for employee training, enacting EDI initiatives, and organizational growth. Achieving these goals is necessary to elevate operations and attract new talent. However, it can be challenging to measure the success of these objectives.

Employing the right technology is one solution to help you monitor the progress of your HR initiatives. For example, an enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central Human Resources solution or Sage Intacct’s ADP Workforce Now connector can track and provide valuable insights into the performance of your growth and EDI objectives.

These are the top five ways that technology can support your HR goals:

  1. Enhanced performance evaluation and reporting

Technology platforms can empower your employees to take ownership over their performance by allowing them to input goals and monitor their progress. These goals may include completing a grid modernization project on time and on budget or achieving targets related to renewable energy initiatives. Reporting can also provide an overview of employee performance, identify trends, and take the right steps to improve the productivity of your workforce.

  1. Improved employee retention and satisfaction

Technology solutions can help improve employee satisfaction through tools that enable them to streamline scheduling, receive recognition for their performance, or allow them to give feedback. Additionally, these solutions can help enhance collaboration — which is necessary to support cross-department initiatives such as grid modernization projects. This open communication can increase employee satisfaction and lead to improved retention.

  1. Optimize the employee experience and training

The introduction of new technology and transition to net-zero electricity will have a significant impact on the skills your workforce needs to achieve its goals. Some ERP platforms, including Microsoft Dynamics 365, can help you track employee training, identify skill gaps, and give employees a clear path to growth. Additionally, learning management systems (LMS) can provide online courses and training modules to help your employees enhance their skills or gain new certifications.

  1. More time for HR to focus on strategic initiatives

Technology can help you streamline many HR processes — including talent acquisition, employee onboarding, and benefits administration and compliance. This gives you more time to focus on strategic objectives such as workforce planning to ensure that your organization has the skills it needs to thrive in the evolving energy and utilities sector.

  1. Recruitment planning and hiring

Applicant tracking systems (ATS) can automate aspects of the recruitment process such as job posting, applicant screening, and interview scheduling. Additionally, your organization may hire temporary employees to support large projects such as expanding transmission lines. Human capital management (HCM) platforms can store this information to allow you to easily contact and recall these employees to support a new project.

Energy and Utilities

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How to achieve your strategic objectives

Technology does not work without a strategy to support it. Having a plan in place, a governance structure for enforcement, and change management to streamline the adoption of new technology are all crucial steps to ensure success.

Additionally, your organization needs to implement technology strategically to achieve its growth or EDI objectives. These steps can help you get started:

Assess your current state

The first step is to assess the current state of your workforce and its objectives. For example, your HR department may have goals related to achieving its EDI initiatives. This assessment can help you understand the current demographics within your organization, how you source prospective candidates, and levels of employee engagement.

It can also help you identify what technology you currently have in place to support the success of your EDI objectives. Technology can provide insights into metrics such as pay equity, employee demographics, and employee satisfaction. You may already have a solution within your organization with the capabilities you need to support your goals that you were not aware of — or you may need to select a new solution to help you achieve your objectives.

Define your desired state

Defining your desired state is the next step in this process. In the example above, your organization assessed its current state to identify how it is performing on its EDI initiatives. In this step, it will compare its current state against its strategic goals. This will help you identify gaps and set specific and measurable goals to achieve your EDI objectives. This may include broadening your sourcing tactics, increasing talent development, or improving levels of employee retention.

It is also important to define the technology you will need to support your desired state during this step of the process. For example, an ERP solution can help you gather and analyze data related to EDI objectives within your organization. These types of solutions also provide comprehensive reporting to help you measure your progress towards your goals.

Implement your solution

Once you have a concrete vision in place and have completed the solution selection process, the next step is to implement a technology solution with the processes and capabilities to support your HR strategy. For example, you may have set goals to broaden your sourcing tactics. There are solutions that can support unbiased candidate sourcing and blind resume screening to help reach these goals. If your organization set a target to offer equitable growth opportunities to all employees, LMS platforms can provide training programs that are tailored to individual learning styles.

It is important to remember that your organization is unique, and not all technology solutions will fit your needs. A solution developed for large-scale organizations may not provide the same benefits to a smaller organization — or may be too cost-prohibitive. Additionally, it is crucial to understand the scale of your organization and whether you have the internal resources required to implement new technology effectively. Small organizations may benefit from a gradual implementation, while larger organizations have the resources to implement new solutions quickly. 

Monitor, evaluate, and adjust

Regularly monitor your progress on your goals, evaluate the success of your initiatives, and make adjustments as needed to support your HR objectives. Measuring key performance indicators (KPIs) related to talent acquisition, retention, and organizational culture will help your organization track its progress on EDI initiatives and make necessary data-driven adjustments to achieve successful outcomes.

Take the next steps

Implementing the right technology with the right strategy can equip your organization with the tools it needs to overcome predicted workforce challenges in the energy and utilities sector. Technology also plays a crucial role in helping your organization progress on its EDI goals — helping you build an employee-centric organization with strong core values. This will help ensure that your organization has the resources it needs to succeed, even as the energy and utilities sector continues to transform.

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Contact the team

For more information about how technology such as an ERP can support your organizational growth and EDI initiatives in the energy and utilities sector, contact MNP’s Consulting Services team. We have the experience to help you create an effective strategy to reach your objectives.

Gord Chalk MBA,CMC

Consulting Leader, Energy and Utilities

Lea Trotman

Manager, Consulting Services - DE&I


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