IceHrm Looking for an HR software for Your Company?
IceHrm IceHrm team write blogs and tutorials about using IceHrm efficiently to manage HR activities of your organization. Create Your IceHrm installtion here:

Evolution of the human resource information system

  Reading Time:

In recent years, human resource management (HRM) has changed considerably. The focus has shifted from administrative management tasks to a role as a strategic partner in the overall strategy of the organisation, largely due to the strong support of information technology developments in this knowledge area. The widespread use of information systems has had a profound impact on the way HRM is handled today. It has fostered significant change in human resource (HR) processes and practices within organisations, including the way they collect, store, use and share information. Many HRM processes have become more efficient, and the impact of this improved level of service has led to greater involvement of the HR department in corporate strategy. This new role in corporate strategy brings significant changes for the HR function and its professionals. In this chapter we examine the impact of information systems in HRM, taking into account the existing literature on the subject, and describe the potential benefits and limitations of using them. We also provide an overview of some of the applications of technology in HRM functional areas within organizations.


Rapidly changing markets, industries and services require an organizational environment that can constantly adapt with new ideas and a short time to market. In this competitive reality, human resources play a more crucial role than ever, as new forms of business require new forms of human engagement.

HR professionals must analyze the opportunities offered by the social, economic, political, legal and technological environment in order to rethink HRM processes and practices that are key factors in the success of the company's mission and objectives.

To respond to these challenges, HRM is forced to adopt new logics and most HR managers have to forget outdated habits and ways of thinking and acting. On the other hand, they must help organizations define their strategies and implement programs to develop their human capital.

In this context, information systems have increased the effectiveness of HRM through more efficient recruitment methods, organizational communication, employee involvement and improved skills of HR managers. Consequently, HRM departments need to link human capital strategies with the most appropriate technology solutions.  The goal is to create an HRM organization that focuses on connecting people to business strategy to achieve rapid adaptation to the changing needs of individuals and organizations. These same needs are gradually making HRMs necessary.

However, not all HR professionals work in strategic HRM. Many are still under pressure and find that they spend their time dealing with day-to-day issues. Eliminating or at least reducing the administrative burden is essential to maximize your time and contribution to the organization.

With this chapter, we want to contribute to defining the role of HRIS in human resources management and the role of human resources professionals in this process.

A cursory examination of the objectives of personnel management has shown that it is by far the most important position in industrial management. Raw materials are not automatically introduced into production. Machines are useless without human beings to operate them. It is not a mass of machines and technological processes, but a human body. It is not a complex issue, but a complex of humanity. It fulfills its function not by impersonal force, but by human energy. All the activities of a company are initiated and determined by the people who make up that institution. Of all management tasks, the management of the human component is the central and most important one, since everything else depends on its proper functioning. Leading management gurus have concluded that it is not technology, but excellence in human resource management that has forced managers to take up the ongoing challenge of the 21st century. Similarly, it assumes that the potential economic and strategic advantage will remain in those organizations that can most effectively attract, develop and retain a diverse group of the best and brightest human resources in the marketplace.  Historical analysis will demonstrate the growing importance of employees, who are no longer just a means of production in the industrial economy of the 20th century, but a key source of sustainable competitive advantage in the knowledge-based economy of the 21st century. In this study, the historical evolution of HRM outlined five major phases in the historical development of the industry in the United States.

Emergence of the Term "Personnel"

The administration of personnel (the forerunner of the term HRM) dates back to prehistoric times, when tribal members were used for specific hunting or gathering tasks. In the households of the ancient Chinese emperors there were employment tests to identify staff with special talents for certain tasks. Then there was the apprentice system and craft guilds, which were founded to train new workers. Human resources were then treated as "personnel".

Isolated function

Human resources management was then isolated from the core functions of the organisation, such as operations, marketing, accounting and finance, and research and development.


At the beginning of the 20th century and before the Second World War, the function of personnel management (the forerunner of the term personnel management) consisted mainly of collecting information about employees, such as name, address, telephone, employment history, etc. In other words, it had a "gatekeeper" function. There was simply no computer technology to automate the records found in today's course history that would keep paper records, and we can still see paper-based personnel management systems in many small businesses today.

In the face of increasing competition from emerging European and Asian economies, the United States and other multinationals have placed greater emphasis on reducing costs through automation and other productivity improvement measures. The increased administrative burden has increased the need to comply with a growing number of legal requirements, while the functional focus has shifted from employee administration to employee development and participation. In order to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of service delivery through cost reduction and value-added services, human resources departments have been forced to use increasingly low-cost and powerful technologies and to develop cost-effective HR software such as HRIS. The history of HRIS began in the late 1950s with payroll systems and continued into the 1960s when the first automated employee data was used.

Accessibility of HRIS regardless of the size of the organization

In the 1960s and 1970s, large corporations saw the need to centralize much of their human resource data to facilitate record keeping and meet legal requirements. These programs were written on large mainframe computers that served as central data stores with little transaction processing, usually for payroll purposes only. The Human Resources Information System (HRIS), also known as the Human Resources Management System (HRMS), became popular in the 1980s with the popularity of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) applications and the move from mainframe systems to client-server technology.

HRISs: From Simple Data Management to Complex Analysis Tools

HRIS has evolved from simple accounting to complex analytical tools that support management decision-making. In the 1980s, there was a shortage of skilled labor, particularly in the technology sector. HRIS has long since evolved from the foundation of a competency management discipline to a tool for employee satisfaction and productivity. In the 1980s, however, HRIS systems contained a variety of functional features and capabilities to attract, retain and reward workers appropriately. By 2000, the HR software industry was growing, and HRIS now includes recruitment, benefits management, time management, payroll, compensation management, learning management, expense reporting and reimbursement, and benefits management. The self-service applications based on the highlighted data allowed employees to manage their own data and make changes to it in a timely manner. Online employee portals have enabled the consolidation of different systems, documents and information in one place.

HRIS for large and small enterprises

With the decline in hardware prices and the simultaneous increase in computing power, more and more companies have been able to afford enterprise software systems, and vendors have seen a market for stand-alone HRIS software. Data connectors and application programming interfaces have enabled customers to use HR systems that were not necessarily delivered with their financial accounting software.

The technical era and the emergence of strategic HRM (1990 to present)

The increased use of technology and the change in focus of the HRM function as an added value for the company's product or service has led the HR department to act as a strategic partner. With the growing importance and recognition of people and HR management in modern organizations, HR management has become essential in management thinking and practice. HRM derives its theoretical meaning from a resource-based vision of the enterprise, which views human capital as a strategic asset and a competitive advantage in improving business performance. The SHRM is designed to diagnose the strategic needs of the organization and the planned development of talent, which requires the implementation of a competitive strategy and the achievement of operational objectives.

Strategic Human Resource Management (SHRM) has evolved from human resource management into a two-phase transformation: from human resource management to traditional human resource management (THRM), and from THRM to SHRM. Today, companies recognize that innovative and creative employees, who hold the key to organizational knowledge, provide a sustainable competitive advantage because intellectual capital is difficult to imitate by competitors, unlike other resources.

Looking for an automated HRIS system? Try IceHrm which is one of the best HRIS systems which has so many HR functions automated into one system.

IceHrm is a Human resource management system for small and medium-sized organizations. This HRM software centralizes employee data and allows only one authorized person to access it, providing a high level of security. The presence module monitors employee time based on information about insertion and perforation. It covers all the basic HRM needs of a company such as Time Management, Training, and Development, Attendance Management, Expense management, leave management, Recruitment management and handling employee information.

Also read...

Types of Performance Management Systems

In the not too distant past, companies were managed in the traditional way, with employees being assessed from time to time to determine their inputs, outputs,...

HRIS mobile app

The current workforce is not tied to a desk. Whether they work from a distance or travel around the world, employees are constantly on the move,...

IceHrm   Create your IceHrm, installation today.