The results of the 2014 #hrwins program are in.   The next installment of the first ever complete look at truly innovative HR Technology products across all categories.

The 2014 program spanned more than 12 months, and consisted of comprehensive HR Technology research and briefings where more than 150 vendors were evaluated on their solution’s innovation, the value their technology delivers to the Human Resources profession, and the overall viability of their products. Vendors in virtually all segments of Human Resources Technology were evaluated. This year’s #hrwins concludes with 15 HR Technology Vendors receiving the distinction of “HR Companies To Watch”.

When HR Technology vendors innovate they create an opportunity for HR, and the business of getting work done, to proceed to a much more desirable level.  When HR Technology vendors innovate, HR wins, hence #hrwins was born.

Innovation in HR Technology is happening at a rapid pace by vendors new and old, and of all sizes.  All of the products we’ve seen are providing value to the marketplace at some level.   I would love to recognize every single one.   All that participated deserve a huge thank you.  The winners truly stood out from the pack.

HR continues to have opportunities to leverage technology to take the business of getting work done to a place where it’s impacting business results in a direct and indisputable way.  This year’s list of #hrwins HR Companies To Watch reflects several of the trends highlighted in recent #hrwins Trend Reports.  My goal is to help HR sift through the noise in the tech market to discover where the most relevant innovations are happening for them.

Each of the 15 vendors receiving this distinction will have a report here on larocqueinc.com outlining the innovation they are delivering to help HR win.  These vendor reports will start immediately.  We are continuing to publish #hrwins Trend Reports ongoing, which are not limited to these 15 stand-out companies, outlining the technology and solution trends found through the #hrwins program.  All of the #hrwins reports are published free of charge.  If you want to be sure not to miss one, we have #hrwins Alerts available.

The 2014 #hrwins HR Companies to watch, listed in alphabetical order, are:

ADP – A few months ago ADP announced new solutions and enhancements across all of their HR products and services in the areas of Mobile, Data Analytics, Talent Management, Recruiting, and Outsourcing.  All the while continuing to unify their technology platforms.  This creates some very interesting opportunities for ADP customers leveraging new innovations combined with access to data and HR expertise from ADP.  They’ve also bolstered their commitment to customer-centric innovation with the announcement of a new Innovation Lab opening in lower Manhattan this year.

BlackbookHR – BlackbookHR’s new “Sense” product, is billed as the first Employee Engagement Platform.  Sense goes beyond traditional survey-only engagement measurement solutions and offers  “people-intelligence” (think analytics with actionable insight), alignment with business objectives via action plans and ongoing “at the right time” measurement, and an “engagement engine” (actionable input for employees to see where the opportunities are to “engage” with each other), all in one platform for companies of all sizes.

Ceridian –Ceridian’s Dayforce HCM has taken their previous #hrwins innovation of one core HR platform with a single interface and extended into areas including Wellness, Talent Management, Engagement, and Analytics.  Bringing innovative cloud-based HCM for the full employee lifecycle to HR Pros in companies of all sizes.  Extending HR’s ability to manage one Employee record across the entire Employee lifecycle with one interface is a true win for HR.

HireVue – HireVue innovated their way back onto the #hrwins by creating a brand new category of HR Technology: the Talent Interaction Platform.  HireVue now offers customers video, mobile, and social enriched actions and insights, at the right time of the talent lifecycle including:  Sourcing, Screening, Validation, Interviewing, and OnBoarding.  Having successfully integrated previous acquisitions, like CodeEval, look for them to continue to innovate their way into helping Recruiters and Managers with scheduling, one of the biggest challenges in the hiring process via their recent acquisition of Reschedge.

Jibe – This fall Jibe announced a new Recruiting Analytics product integrated across the myriad systems used by Recruiting teams.  Bringing the recruiting user the right data, when and as it’s needed, in an easy-to-use interface they can use to make business decisions backed with powerful insight. Analytics are hot in the world of B2B technology.  The “big data” and new UX design trends have brought a lot of attention to the promise of actionable insight and analytics for B2B tech users.  HR is no exception, especially in Recruiting where having the right data from the various disparate systems and processes involved in most hiring efforts can not only help you find and hire the best candidates, but save a company from wasting efforts and dollars in the wrong place, or at the wrong time.

KinHR – Designed for business people, whether they are in HR or not, KinHR has developed a solution that focuses on the parts of the employee lifecycle that impact a small or medium business on a day to day basis.  They deliver it via the cloud, in an easy to use interface that HR and non-HR pros alike can get up and running quickly.  Until a few years ago HR Technology for companies with less than 1,000 employees was limited to payroll systems and extensions thereof.  Hard to believe, when more than 95% of U.S. employment happens at firms with less than 100 employees.  Even today spreadsheets or cumbersome light versions of enterprise systems are still de rigueur, when it comes to core HR for small businesses.  KinHR changes that.

Namely – Namely has developed a full People Management Platform (HCM, Talent Management, Performance Management, and Social Engagement) emerging from their foundation of performance management for high growth companies.  Small to Medium sized businesses compete in the market with other firms, both small and large.   Namely aims to enable their customers to grow faster with effective People Management in an easy to use, Employee Centric, design.

Risesmart – RiseSmart’s Compass product for Employee Empowerment was released in beta this fall.  With Compass, Risesmart aims to disrupt the Employee Engagement market in the same way they disrupted the Transition/Outplacement space:  By focusing on the employee and what matters most to them in their job or career.  Whether that’s becoming an expert, finding or becoming a mentor, climbing the corporate ladder, or learning the next skill.  Compass guides the employee down the path they choose, while capturing insightful metrics that give the Employer a measurement on engagement and flags organizational risks.

SmartRecruiters – Since SmartRecruiters launched in 2010 their product has evolved from a free Applicant Tracking System (ATS) for small businesses to a full-featured Recruiting platform that may very well be the most integrated ATS system on the market.  SmartRecruiters is committed to a simple-to-use interface that is driven by user and candidate experience.  The system has become a sort of hiring command central for their customers.  Because there are no user fees, both HR and line managers use the system.  Because it’s elegantly designed for hiring performance they keep using it. This offers customers a level of visibility driving both cost and quality control that is hard to achieve in other recruiting systems driven more by compliance than business performance.

Talemetry – In the last year Talemetry has extended their Talent Generation Platform in several ways.  They’ve added 3rd Party Agency management as a source of talent, while adding Customer Relationship Management capabilities across their platform, and deepening their Analytics offerings. The Talemetry platform reaps the benefits of bi-directional integrations with most all of the leading ATS and Talent Management suites, a distinct advantage for enterprise level customers that depend on optimizing multiple channels of recruitment.

TINYpulse – TINYhr’s TINYpulse product gives small business managers insights, trends, and opportunities to improve retention, culture, and business results.  For HR Technology apps to be successful in the SMB, they need to demonstrate immediate value to both the employee and the business.  TINYhr is innovating simple to use Employee-Centric software that does both.

Vestrics – Vestrics has developed a Human Capital Analytics Platform with an interface that is visual and easy to use for anyone focused on Human Capital Analytics.  While their design and interface is innovative, it’s what went “behind the interface” that makes it really stand out.  Vestrics has taken 10 years of knowledge as leading consultants in Human Capital and Learning Analytics, helping companies of all sizes in various industries turn data about their investments in human capital programs into solid, meaningful decisions that would improve business results and condensed it all into their Analytics Software Platform.
Work4Labs –Work4Labs’ Facebook Recruiting product is a comprehensive solution, including new capabilities released this fall taking advantage of Facebook Graph Search.  Facebook Graph Search opens the door to search for candidates from among Facebook’s more than 1 Billion users.  Work4Labs’ innovative interface to the Facebook graph effectively synchronizes an employer’s career site to the Facebook user base.  Employers can then take advantage of additional capabilities focused on engaging and nurturing candidate relationships.

Workfolio – As the workforce shifts to as much as 50% contingent by 2020, “professional visibility and branding” are things people will become increasingly concerned with.  Enter Workfolio’s Personal Visibility Platform.  Augmenting an individual’s already existing resume and their profiles on sites like LinkedIn, Workfolio’s service prepares professionals for this shift in the workforce and their new role in it.

Zapoint – Zapoint’s SkillsMapper product is another innovative entry in the new Career Management category. Built for medium to large size enterprises, SkillsMapper offers staff visibility into their career or job path and guidance to both formal and informal development and learning opportunities, based on a skills inventory that reflects strengths and opportunities for development to both the employee and employer.  SkillsMapper sits at the intersection of Talent Management, Engagement, Succession Planning, Learning, and retention.