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5 HR Tech Trends That Are Game Changers For Small Businesses

If the pandemic has taught businesses one thing, it’s that keeping your workforce organised and motivated, especially when working in remote teams, is crucial. Consider investing in these HR technology tools and initiatives.

Emerging HR technology has transformed the way that we hire and retain talent. The pandemic has brought to light the importance of mental health awareness and how it can impact the workplace. Additionally, we’ve seen the rise of recruitment chatbots and AI-powered software for HR professionals. As a growing startup, should you consider implementing these HR tools? Keep reading to see how these trends could impact the bottom line and ultimately, be game changers for your business.

1. Remote Teams and Project Management Software

The biggest monthly expense for most startups is their office rent. Regardless of whether your team works in a shophouse or in a coworking space - rent in Singapore is undeniably steep. As many of us continue to work from home, paying office rent can be a drain on the monthly budget. However, there’s a window of opportunity in moving more towards a virtual office. Instead of paying rent for the entire office space, consider investing in an enhanced project management software. Many startups use Excel and other free tools to collaborate on projects but the right project management software can make tracking timelines and working remotely a seamless process. What’s more, even if you downsize to just half of your current office space and splurge on software to keep your team connected and working collaboratively, you’ll still impact the bottom line.

2. AI Chatbots For Recruiting

In recent years, more HR professionals have turned to AI chatbots to increase productivity when it comes to filtering candidate profiles and ensuring that potential hires receive a fair, unbiased chance in the hiring process. AI chatbots for recruitment automate time-consuming tasks such as scheduling interviews and receiving documents. This lets you spend more time in the later stages of the interview process, such as speaking with highly qualified candidates. Additionally, recruitment chatbots can be trained, meaning that the more information or data you feed the algorithm, the more automated the chatbot becomes. These can also be personalised which is especially true in cases where the recruitment chatbot is created with neuro-linguistic programming (NLP), a subfield of linguistics.

At first glance, AI recruitment chatbots may seem like an unnecessary expense. However, if you look at this tool with a long-term lens, you’ll realise that your team will actually save money and increase productivity over time. The larger your business grows, the more relevant and impactful AI recruitment chatbots will become. Also, your recruitment team will thank you for outsourcing their ‘busy work’ so that they can spend more time on the more important areas of recruitment.

3. HR Admin Software

Administrative duties such as scheduling appointments, answering phone calls, and maintaining organised file systems are crucial yet time-consuming. In smaller teams, many of these tasks are assigned to an HR professional. While these responsibilities can be done with pen and paper or using Microsoft Word, this is not only inefficient but can also leave room for human error. Investing in the right HR admin software can help relieve some of these pain points. From managing benefits and payment automation to team building activities and employee development, there are numerous benefits to using admin software. Additionally, HR admin software makes tracking payments more transparent. Having a snapshot of your company at any given time could also make it easier to identify where in your company can reduce costs.

4. Upskilling Initiatives

More than 40% of employees in Singapore leave their jobs due to insufficient learning opportunities. It's no surprise that people are looking beyond job security. This is partly due to the rise of the gig economy and other flexible work arrangements. Simply put, employees care more about career growth as well as learning opportunities. If your business is structured in a way that limits professional growth, you may eventually lose the most valuable employees. Considering that the average cost of hiring a new employee in Singapore is S$4,425, it’s beneficial to track employee retention rate. One way to retain talent is by offering upskilling initiatives to keep the team engaged and motivated. For instance, enabling a junior-level designer to attend a five-week online course with General Assembly could cost your business S$750 but they’ll be equipped with new skills to bring to the table. Regardless of the upskilling initiatives that you introduce to your team, it would still be less than the cost of hiring a new employee.

5. Employee Wellness

Awareness about employee wellness and mental health has been increasing. As working from home is the new normal for the foreseeable future, it’s important to ensure the team remains in good mental health. In fact, the state of a person’s mental health can impact their ability to think clearly and their productivity level. Investing in employee wellness doesn’t need to be fancy spa retreats, this can be as simple as checking in with weekly calls or sharing free mental health resources. Additionally, you may consider assigning a mentorship program within the team to further support employees.

How HR Trends Are Game Changers For Your Business

No matter the size of your organisation, a business is only as good as its employees. Leveraging the right HR tech tools and processes could be just the game changer that your business needs — to invest in the happiness and wellbeing of your employees as well as to reduce business costs in the long run. Wondering exactly how these HR tech trends can translate to your company’s bottom line?

How HR Tech Trends Impact Business Savings

1. Project management softwareProject management tools such as Asana,, and Zoom will cost on average S$1,500 for around 30 employees. Considering that the average office space rent for about 30 people is S$20,000 - S$25,000 per month.S$10,000+/month for reduced office space
2. HR chatbots for recruitingChatbots start at around S$1,000/month and will decrease the hiring cost by 55% on average. The average cost per hire in Singapore is around S$4,000.S$2,200/hire
3. HR admin softwareBasic HR admin tools start at around S$1,000 per month. The average admin cost is S$13,000 per month for a company with 50 people.S$2,250/month (on average)
4. Upskilling initiativesA business subscription for the online learning platform Coursera starts at S$535 per year for each employee. With an average retention rate of 45%, a business with 50 people will spend upwards of S$80,000 on new hires every year. Assume that learning opportunities could be half that number.S$13,000/year or S$1,083/month

assuming that the total online learning subscription cost for 50 employees is S$27,000

5. Employee wellnessWhile there are plenty of free mental health resources in Singapore, an annual membership for mental wellness and e-coaching starts at S$2,000 per year for businesses up to 50 people. Assume that employee wellness could increase retention rate and as a result reduce the cost of hiring new employees.S$12,000/year or S$1,000/month

Resources From ValueChampion

Pooja Khandelwal

Pooja is a Content Marketing Lead at ValueChampion Singapore. She is responsible for planning and executing sponsored content projects and building relationships with media partners. In addition, she evaluates financial products for consumers based on quantitative and qualitative analysis. Pooja holds degrees in Economics and Psychology from Rutgers University. Her prior work experience includes founding and leading a content marketing consultancy and working at eCommerce, AI, and B2B SaaS startups in Singapore. Pooja has contributed insights to Tech in Asia, Yahoo!, and many other publications. Connect with her on LinkedIn to collaborate on content.