Decisions, Decisions: Choosing the right HR system for your business

Choose the right HR system for your business with BrightHR's detailed guide. Understand your HR needs, trial a demo, and ensure your investment is tailored to your company

Andrew Dutton: BrightHR Digital Content Manager

Technology has spurred rapid development in HR management systems over the last twenty years. 

The range of features available on the market is wider than ever. This makes the choice between different software more difficult than ever, too. So, what should you be looking for when choosing the right HR system for your business?

Knowing where to start can be a daunting prospect, but BrightHR is here to walk you through the crucial things you should be looking for to ensure your investment in an HR system pays off in the long term.

Understand your purpose

The aim of HR software is simple: to boost efficiency, enhance performance, and increase productivity within a business.

Managers know their business better than anybody else and should develop a good idea of their specific needs from the outset. It’s also worth involving line managers from different areas of the business, to help develop an accurate vision and wider context for the required HR system.

There’s really no point investing in a new piece of software with unlimited capability... only to use a fraction of the functions—this is a common gripe we hear time and time again from business leaders across all industries.

Do your homework

In-depth research is the mother of all sound business decisions, and the world of HR software is no different.

There are plenty of HR systems out there that provide comprehensive and complex functionality, while the look, feel, usability and, most importantly, effectiveness often get overlooked. Remember that overcomplicated processes rarely boost efficiency, but they often hinder it.

Always keep your business in mind when matching HR system features to the needs of your organisation. For example, it’s vital for modern businesses to have an HR system that is supported by the Cloud, and that can be accessed by employees from any computer or mobile device at any time, anywhere with an internet connection.

Get tailored

The ability to home in on the details relevant to your business is crucial. It’s common sense really—an HR system that offers the ability to customise the standard platform is likely to suit a business best.

Customisation is also important when it comes to managing defined teams, producing reports, and setting employee access levels. You never know how your business will grow or change in the future, and customisation is an important key to long-term scalability.

Schedule a demo

While you can browse and compare software features online, there’s no better substitute for getting to know more about an HR system than running through a trial with an expert who knows the capability inside out, and how it could meet your business needs.

Once you’ve whittled down your shortlist, it’s time to get testing. To get real value from these trials, it’s important to ensure the demonstration is focused on the needs of your organisation, rather than a whistle-stop tour that skims the surface of each function (even if it’s not relevant).

Final thought

There is a multitude of HR systems out there, so make sure you fully understand your needs and talk to other members of your team to ensure you are investing in a system that fits your business like a glove.

You might wish to create a template checklist for comparing your options before making the final decision. Here are a few things worth including...


  • Store employee records securely
  • Track patterns of absence
  • Manage payroll
  • Share internal documents in real time
  • Organise annual leave
  • Automate recurring processes


  • Configure security levels for managers, administrators and employees
  • Scalable in the event of business growth or change
  • Customise layout and reporting function


  • Easy remote access
  • Standalone system or one that can integrate with other software?

Support and updates

  • Technical support in place to fix bugs on demand
  • Product regularly updated through active research

BrightHR, the winner of the 2016 HR Provider of the Year Award for SMEs, has its own HR system that we are certain could suit your business's needs. Call us on 0800 783 2806 to request a demo today!