3 challenges in hiring federal HR managed services
September 4, 2019 3:45 pm
3 min read
This content is provided by EconSys
Due to budget and staff restrictions, many small- and medium-sized federal HR departments struggle to meet their administrative workload. Without the resources to hire additional full-time staff, HR in these agencies is under pressure to keep up with core job functions. To meet administrative directives, additional hours are needed for planning, analysis, and additional review of key elements.
This is where managed services can make a difference. By hiring skilled HR professionals who have experience in the functional areas for which agencies lack resources, they can fill these gaps. Yet there are issues to be aware of with this approach as well. Due to the specific nature of federal HR and the needs of individual agencies, it can be difficult to find people who have both the skills and experience needed. In this article, we will review three of these common challenges and how some agencies are addressing them.
Software Can Hinder Productivity
Agencies with limited resources also tend to still operate on outdated, legacy software systems for many of their administrative processes. In some cases, they may not even have software, relying on paper and Excel for many functions.
For a third-party managed services provider that has HR experience, this can greatly impact efficiency. These resources is unlikely to have used legacy HR systems specific to an individual agency. While your agency’s HR specialists have spent years learning the intricacies of your legacy systems, an outside provider will struggle to complete basic tasks with the older tools.
Agencies Must Train Third-Party Staff
There are several managed service providers who offer skilled staff with experience in Federal Government administrative work and the necessary security screenings to onboard quickly. However, most lack the agency-specific experience and training needed to get up to speed immediately. For seasonal increases in workload, a slow onboarding process with extensive training can actually create more problems than are solved.
The only way to ensure fast onboarding is to hire a provider that already has experience working with the specific software systems, policies, and processes in your agency. This can be difficult to find.
Providers Are Not Always Flexible
The most important element when hiring a third-party provider is that they have specific experience working with agencies like yours. In most cases, the gaps are nuanced. You do not necessarily need one or two FTE specialists to take on a full-time workload. You need relief in several different functional areas to ease the burden on existing staff.
Unfortunately, many managed service providers lump together lower tier administrative tasks with intensive tasks that require a higher level of experience. The result is a higher billable rate for simple tasks that you are trying to offload to become more efficient. At the same time, when on-demand support is required, some providers may not have a large enough pool of talent to fill those gaps.
The right managed service provider will have a flexible workforce that can adjust to your needs as they change.
Finding a Managed Service Provider to Match Your Needs
The right managed service provider is flexible, capable of fitting into any system, and has specific training on the software and processes used by your agency. They should be ready to start as soon as possible and require minimal onboarding so that you can address the imbalanced workload as fast as possible.
At Econsys, we provide a suite of operational support tools designed for Federal HR use and offers extensive HR staff augmentation and HR professional services. This allows us to train HR services staff to use our FedHR Navigator software in advance of servicing your organization. When you partner with EconSys you can configure a managed service, custom solution for your agency.