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Multi-Process HR Services Buyers Seek Standardization & Automation, but Rapport is Top Vendor Selection Criterion

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NelsonHall’s latest Multi-Process HR Services NEAT vendor evaluation included customer interviews to ascertain current satisfaction levels and future expectations across a range of criteria. Below is a selection of the findings from our interviews with multi-process HR services customers. 

Principal issues & operational priorities

The main issues and operational priorities cited by respondents included the following:

  • Standardization of HR processes
  • Increasing self-service utilization
  • Increasing efficiencies/reducing manual intervention
  • Statutory compliance.

Other issues included:

  • Driving down costs in the delivery of HR services
  • Redesigning processes in a way that improves the user experience
  • Updating technology systems
  • Delivering a roadmap of investment and change
  • Implementing a robust quality control framework.

These issues and priorities, in turn, directly impacted the drivers and benefits organizations were seeking to obtain from outsourcing multi-process HR services, as explained below.

Drivers for outsourcing multi-process HR services

The top driver among respondents included seeking lower costs, including the use of labor arbitrage. Approximately 17% of organizations were seeking global standardization, followed closely by the need to increase productivity and automation.

Other reasons cited include leveraging best practices (13%), improving quality and service delivery (11%), HR transformation including processes and technology (7%), greater accuracy/error reduction (5%), scalability (4%), and continuity (2%).

Top vendor selection criteria

Nearly 25% of respondents made their decision on which supplier to use based on the rapport that was established with the vendor, with many organizations emphasizing the need to have a true partner where the relationship would continue to build and improve over time, and where the respondent felt that the supplier was invested in its clients’ long-term success.

The next highest selection criterion was cost, followed equally by the supplier’s ability to handle complexity and their ability to demonstrate knowledge and proficiency.

Current satisfaction levels & areas for improvement

Multi-process HR benefits: a selection of current client satisfaction levels and future importance ratings


Respondents’ current satisfaction levels derived from multi-process HR services reveals that there is plenty of room for improvement. While organizations are mostly satisfied with the cost savings achieved, driving further standardization and consistency in HR processes should be the main priority for vendors over the next few years. Another significant area for improvement is the turnaround time for HR transactions and inquiries.

In terms of respondents’ qualitative feedback, by far the top area for improvement cited related to various aspects of innovation, including:

  • Integrating more innovative tools from a technology perspective, including robotics and AI
  • Being proactive and formal as new innovations are released
  • Working more cohesively to bring innovations to services faster, clearer, and within a defined timeline
  • Introducing more incremental innovations.

Other areas cited for improvement included:

  • Strengthening thought leadership capabilities
  • Identifying issues and driving process improvements
  • Applying knowledge to an activity, rather than just completing an activity
  • Improving communications, especially when a change will be made.

Overall, respondents are reasonably satisfied with their current multi-process HR services supplier, and would on average rate their likeliness to recommend their existing vendor at 7.8 out of 10 in favor of recommendation.


NelsonHall’s NEAT vendor assessments look in detail at vendors’ ability to deliver immediate benefits to their clients, as well as their ability to meet future client requirements, and assist strategic sourcing managers in assessing vendor capability while cutting the time and cost associated with their sourcing projects. To find out more, contact Guy Saunders.

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