Mobile Feedback and Analytics
Rapidly evolving trends in work styles, technology, and demographics are putting pressure on current organizational processes. Managing employees’ expectations, behaviors, and skills with the company’s business objectives are becoming increasingly challenging. Performance management and talent development needs to adapt to these circumstances to ensure employees are fully aligned with the organization's goals and priorities.
HRDigital is providing innovative software solutions to the B2B Human Resources market. We are pioneering new approaches to HR analytics and multi-source feedback technology. Our web-based systems and mobile applications focus on helping companies better understand, develop, and optimize their workforce. In a world with increasing complexity and dynamic organizational structures, we enable customers to maximize Return On Talent and align HR with the business as well as the needs of employees.
At the intersection of people, business and technology
"Work is not a place you go, work is what you do"
When comparing modern work life with how most people did their jobs 10 to 15 years ago, mobility is one of the most striking developments we have witnessed so far.
Technology has and remains to be a key enabler of change in the workplace. Cloud computing, for example, allows us to work from essentially anywhere; freeing borders and physical constraints. Meeting rooms have moved into virtual spaces, people we see, talk to, and share information with in real-time can be on the other side of the planet. Being able to work from anywhere, on any device and at any time, however, represents only one piece of the equation. Profound changes in social norms have contributed to just as much change in the workplace as technology. Due to changing demographics in a number of countries the availabilty of young employees has diminished. Therefore, the importance of what they expect from an employer has increased. This can mean that they have preferences to live in places away from where "work" is. The new generation wants the same user experience at work as when they are using their mobile devices for private purposes. Staying connected is a necessity and expectation nowadays, so why would it have to be any different when we do our jobs?
The challenges of being "placeless"
Technological trends in society along with the needs of a global business world have created the perfect storm for talent management. Highly distributed teams add further challenges for organizations to gain a realistic idea of available skills and talents. Understanding the development needs of the workforce or the efficiency of change management processes are key factors of a company's success. Skilled talent has become a rare commodity and competition is still heating up.
"Caring companies" that look for and facilitate feedback to clearly understand performance management requirements, people skills, personalities, culture and the future development needs of their workforce have gained a competitive edge. This is even truer when they leverage technology with mobile preferences of employees. This is just one reason we founded HRDigital.
Built from our experiences
While in our jobs as executives and senior managers of global and regional organizations we experienced the outdatedness and inefficiency of employee feedback and performance management systems. The once a year appraisal is founded on what a manager can remember from the last 365 days. This is a single source feedback and very few checkpoints are required in regards to performance and feedback during the course of the year. Many companies lack mobile solutions and use boring traditional appraisal systems rather than making feedback an interesting and cheerful experience. HRDigital was founded to improve these and many more areas of HR business.
"Our products are designed to enable customers to better focus
on key success factors and address them efficiently."
Return on investment
Like any other investment decision, you have to be able to measure your ROI or in the case of HR investments - Return on Talent (ROT). While there is no shortage of metrics in areas like sales, marketing or production, measuring the impact from people development (e.g. training, coaching, change management) is traditionally less emphasized. We can fill this gap.
Align people development with business goals
When designing or driving initiatives like people development, people retention or change management, a solid understanding of where you start and how to make sure your efforts are in line with your company's business goals is paramount. At the same time, there needs to be checkpoints during the process that allow you to see whether it is heading in the right direction. Our products deliver the necessary data.
Support individuals as well as the organization
Motivated teams with the right combination of skills and tasks make a big difference. When using our solutions, individuals can easily recognize "what is in it for them", which then contributes to their motivation and engagement. As employees and leaders develop their key competencies, organizations will mature and professional standards will increase overall.
Since it is easier to manage what you can measure, we support HR managers by providing important data and benchmarks. We help HR to build their activities on real KPIs, making their decisions more solid and data-driven. Results prove employee performance and will strengthen the HR business partner role.
Matching jobs and skills
People have their own strengths and weaknesses. Not everyone is a good fit for every role or cultural environment. We support you in finding the best match between individuals and the skills your company needs. Our data will also allow you to match people better when assembling teams for projects or any other purpose.
Think strategy, drive execution
We understand corporate and people strategies. Strategies without the proper drive and tools to execute them remain empty. We have designed our solutions to support execution with the right data and activities and help you to achieve your goals.
Technology supports companies in various ways; an increase in productivity, a better understanding of their current business and a clearer picture of where their markets are going. We do believe that technology, in addition, can drive employee engagement if it is crafted in line with how people want to work. We have designed our products so they raise employee acceptance and drive participation.
Security is imperative
We know how important data security is when working with personal information. In order to meet your security requirements, we have applied a series of state-of-the-art technologies to our products and have chosen our suppliers carefully in a way that supports you in keeping your data safe.
Enterprise-grade security for HR data
HRDigital's mobile and cloud-based surround-view application offers tremendous advantages compared with traditional "heavy applications" or browser-based systems that require excessive investments of money and time for implementation, customization, training and ongoing maintenance. The total cost of ownership (ToC) for those systems is increasingly hard to argue. Surround-view is fast, inexpensive and uncomplicated to implement. Content can easily be customized and user acceptance is high as mobile apps hit the "zeitgeist" and integrate seamlessly with employees' modern lifestyles.
Security beyond Corporate firewalls
Like any mobile and cloud-based system, surround-view does have to provide reliable responses to the security challenges that come with architectures that extend IT systems beyond Corporate premises. We have a clear understanding that security can be a strong competitive differentiator. Business managers increasingly do not tolerate any confidentiality breaches when it comes to personal user data. This logic applies to all companies, big or small.
Eight questions and answers that explain surround-view security
Here are the questions and answers to provide insights into what we have done and leveraged in order to keep your data and our software safe. We believe that this allows us to be specific and best address any concerns you may have.
1. Can you explain the surround-view mobile app and Web UI security model?
Our overall security model is based on three main elements:
- Mobile device and data security
The manufacturer of your mobile device usually provides security measures including a) system security (software and hardware), b) encryption and data protection (the architecture and design that protects user data if the device is lost or stolen, or if an unauthorized person attempts to use or modify it), c) app security (the systems that enable apps to run securely and without compromising platform integrity), d) network security (industry-standard networking protocols that provide secure authentication and encryption of data in transit).
In addition to these security features, surround-view uses state-of-the-art encryption technology to protect personal data stored on the mobile device. This refers to data online and offline including user email, first and last name and uploaded profile pictures. Data in transit from the end user to the server is protected by SSL encryption.
- Authentication & user roles concept
Surround-view uses industry standard OAUTH 2.0 technology for user authentication and role-based authorization. OAUTH is a protocol that supports authorization workflows. The primary function is to ensure that a specific user has permission to do something within the scope of his or her rights. Many large organizations like Google, Microsoft, Facebook and others are also using this technology.
We do automatically lock an account (Web UI or mobile app) after a certain number of failed login attempts. Unlocking an account follows a pre-defined procedure. If certain conditions apply, unlocking requires the involvement of the customer’s HR staff. In case a user has been idle for 10 minutes he or she will be automatically logged out of the account and will have to sign in again.
- Cloud security
Surround-view data is stored and processed by Microsoft Azure Cloud Services and fully benefits from its advanced state-of-the-art security technology, procedures, and certifications. For more detailed information regarding Azure cloud security please refer, in particular, to the below items #5, #6 and #7.
If desired, a customer can also choose to host and process data in their own data center and thus apply their own security measures.
2. Who can see personal data in surround-view and how is data anonymization handled?
We use Microsoft SQL Server 2016 as our standard database, including its advanced “Always Encrypted” (AE) option to make sure state-of-the-art encryption is being applied.
Personally Identifiable Information (PII) stored in our database is encrypted while in transit or at rest. Among those PII items encrypted by surround-view are all passwords, profile pictures, user’s first and last names, email addresses, positions, job titles, hierarchy levels, functional areas, user belongs to (e.g. accounting, sales) and customer company name. In addition, user roles in surround-view (see #3 below) are also encrypted.
User data is fully anonymized and only a customer's authorized personnel can see such personal information in a clear format. For example, a supervisor owning the appropriate rights can see individual feedback results of a subordinate. An executive manager or an HR administrator without having those rights, cannot.
Please keep in mind that HRDigital can never access such personal data of a user in clear format nor can database administrators or any other technical resources.
3. How do you manage user rights?
Surround-view distinguishes between seven differently defined user roles. Users of the same role form a group. Surround-view does grant access and permissions based on the group a user belongs to. But even within the same group, certain rights can be granted differently to certain users. Let's take the group "HR Manager" to exemplify.
HR Managers have administration rights like creating other users and assigning them to the appropriate organizational structure. Those rights can range from fulfilling administrative tasks (e.g. creating other users) up to having access to sensitive feedback results of individuals, departments or an entire company. Those rights can be granted in line with the company's policies and are highly adaptable. HR Managers can also selectively delegate some of their rights because not every task requires management involvement. Such tasks could be delegated to an HR Administrator role. For security reasons, not all rights inherent to the HR Manager role can be delegated to other roles.
The rights an HR Manager owns are set when HRDigital first initializes surround-view for a customer. The boundaries of these rights are, again, defined by the customer's internal policies. The HR Manager role is the only one HRDigital has to create and can create. All others are handled by the customer themselves once an HR Manager role has been created.
This logic of role-based rights, including its high adaptability to a customer's policies, applies to all rights management in surround-view.
4. Who stores and processes surround-view data?
We use Microsoft Azure Cloud Services to store, access, and process data. Azure complies with relevant high-level security standards and has received independent third-party certifications accordingly. These high standards cover:
- data protection technologies and backup systems
- organizational security policies and procedures for personnel
- physical access to Azure data centers.
More detailed information on Azure security can be found here: Azure Trust Center
5. In which country or jurisdiction is surround-view data stored and processed?
This is managed by Microsoft Azure Cloud Services and the corresponding storage and backup options provided. Among those is storage in the EU.
Additionally, we do offer customers the ability to store and process surround-view data exclusively in Germany via Microsoft’s “German Cloud” option. If chosen, cloud services will be managed by Deutsche Telekom's subsidiary, T-Systems as a Microsoft cloud services partner and trustee. Microsoft does not have access to those data nor can Microsoft be ordered by third-parties to provide such access to them.
6. Does HRDigital or any of its suppliers have access to personal user data?
No, neither HRDigital nor its suppliers have access to personal user data. HRDigital can only see aggregate, anonymous data for statistics and services enhancement purposes. Please do also refer to our encryption and anonymization technologies above.
7. Does HRDigital process any personal user data?
HRDigital processes the data collected by surround-view via its cloud services provider Microsoft in order to support the customer’s user administration, people development efforts and HR analytics.
All of these data are anonymized and encrypted and only the customer’s authorized personnel have access to a person’s personal information (PII) in a readable format. Neither HRDigital nor its suppliers have access to non-encrypted, non-anonymous, data.
8. What happens to the data if a customer decides to discontinue his relationship with HRDigital?
In such a case, HRDigital will offer the customer the option to either permanently delete all data including all users belonging to that client OR transfer the data to the customer’s designated storage system.