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How APIs are driving modern HR technology

Jigesh Saheba, VP of Product Development, ADP Marketplace

Jigesh Saheba, VP of Product Development, ADP Marketplace

HR leaders have more tools available to them than ever before to streamline their operations and make their work more effective. But the reality is that too many of these solutions leave employers stuck with siloed applications that cause unnecessary, unproductive burdens on HR administrators and front-line managers, as well as stressed-out employees and costly data errors.

In attempting to adopt new solutions, companies create new hurdles like disparate data flowing across many HR systems, unfriendly user platforms, and ineffective business processes. As companies look to grow more agile in a rapidly evolving world of work, addressing inadequate, isolated HR applications and the negative impact across all levels of the organization is a great place to start.

The good news is that an e-commerce storefront of high-quality applications that can help businesses make their HR processes as effective and agile as possible already exists. The ability to quickly adapt and implement new HR tech tools as the world changes helps boost a company’s bottom line and helps companies adapt to meet modern demands. 

API-based technology is the solution. Employers that want to be at their competitive best should consider implementing an API-fueled technology strategy to realize business benefits and provide an improved employee experience.

APIs Open up Communication Streams

Expanded use of application programming interfaces, or APIs, proves how they can help build a positive, streamlined experience for employers and employees alike. An API is essentially a type of software that allows two or more applications to communicate with each other quickly and effectively. Think of them as you would a human translator that helps two people speaking different languages understand one another. Their role in enabling communication is critical. Without them, no work could get done.

APIs Enable Effective, Efficient People Management

Developers use APIs to build integrations that can reduce the burden of duplicate data entry and allow employers to orchestrate complex business processes that span disparate systems. For example, businesses can create a customized human capital management (HCM) portfolio by choosing applications that best suit their company’s unique needs. Best of all, there’s no need to hire a costly developer or depend on internal IT resources to make sure every component plays nice with the others. API solutions are ready-to-go solutions – all the labor-intensive programming work has been done. Developers build these solutions allowing the customer to buy off the shelf, much as they would shop as online consumers.

An integrated, API-enabled solution can give HR administrators better visibility into their talent, which can help them better manage processes such as employee onboarding and offboarding. Being more “connected” paves the way for deploying an effective, efficient people management strategy that connects disparate HR applications. 

Pick and Choose What the Company Needs

While online shopping is well established for the retail world, it’s an emerging concept for employers. But API-enabled solutions focus on connectivity, interoperability, and freedom of choice. For example, startup companies can take early steps with simple solutions targeted to business clients. Then, as they grow, they can scale up or add new, easily integrated solutions and features that meet the changing demands of the company. Beyond the buy-as-you-go approach, APIs enable the freedom of choice and vendor independence by allowing organizations to pick the best available solution in the market at a given point. 

When solution vendors use standardized APIs to integrate with core HR and payroll systems, application changes are less disruptive to business. That agility through APIs allows systems to remain in step with one another and react in real-time to significant events, including new hires, terminations, payroll administration, life events, and many more critical people-related processes. 

The More Connectivity, the More Possibility

We at ADP use APIs to create a simple, modern HR experience for both employers and employees. For the past five years, developers have had access to hundreds of HCM APIs to build and connect their solutions to ADP. When proper connectivity is possible, the outcome can be exponential.

ADP offers APIs in all major HCM domains, including HR, payroll, time, and talent. We’vecontinued to enhance solutions like ADP Marketplace, our digital HR storefront that allows ADP clients to customize their HCM ecosystems. APIs power the platform to deliver connectivity and interoperability between ADP and hundreds of partner systems.

APIs greatly facilitate the ability to pull or push data quickly and smoothly in a world where circumstances are continually changing. The ADP Mobile Solutions app, for example, uses APIs to pull pay statement data from the payroll application, push timesheet data into a time application and initiate benefits changes by reporting qualifying data to the benefits application.

An API-Based Marketplace Offers a Competitive Edge

With APIs driving such dramatic change, a spectrum of possibilities exists for businesses of all sizes to have instant access to solutions that quickly expand their capabilities while bypassing unnecessary internal costs. Small or medium-sized companies with limited IT resources and budgets no longer need to be at a technological disadvantage to larger competitors. With an API-based marketplace, they can find, test, buy, and implement various HR solutions to build their competitive edge. For larger organizations, APIs offer the ability to create a custom integration or save time and money by using pre-built apps that connect payroll data to other popular HR products. 

As employees demand more support from employers, amid shifting priorities and the need for added flexibility, companies can meet the needs of the moment and position themselves on a solid footing for the future by leveraging APIs. 

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