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Hi HR Tech readers — my name is Carrie Barth, and I will write guest posts on our blog from time-to-time. In case you are not familiar, I work at Lockton as a Solutions Consultant in the HR Technology & Outsourcing Practice.

“The best brokers and consultants are looking at the big picture, which, of course, includes technology.”

In an ever evolving world, it seems once a new product or service is introduced, another, more innovative solution is ready to take its place. Well, it’s really no different in the HR tech world. The best brokers and consultants are looking at the big picture, which, of course, includes technology.

Earlier this fall, some of the best and brightest in employee benefits joined forces at the EBN Benefits Forum & Expo in Nashville. I was invited to present on HR going mobile alongside Jessica Marshall, Senior Benefits Manager at Logan’s Roadhouse, a Lockton client.

The first question we addressed in our presentation was “why?” Why is HR going mobile, and why should employers embrace this change?

The facts speak for themselves:

  • 92 percent of Americans own cell phones.
  • 68 percent own smartphones.
  • 71 percent of employees are not fully engaged in their benefits.

Perhaps we should be connecting with employees about their benefits through those oh-so-popular smartphones?

Mobile technology is becoming more and more integrated with our lives. We put our kids’ soccer schedules in our phone; we order Jimmy Johns on a mobile app; and we perform many HR employment functions on our mobile devices, including enrolling in benefits. The challenges and reasons why most industries would not be using or considering using mobile technology to better serve your employees are becoming few and far between.

Logan’s Roadhouse is an excellent example of how implementing a mobile platform for employees was able to not only increase employee engagement, which decreases turnover, but also lead to a whole host of benefits, including:

  • Engaging a larger demographic of employees;
  • Incorporating the company’s wellness incentives;
  • Increasing access for employees and their families;
  • Eliminating paper usage; and
  • Increasing the overall employee experience through improved functionality.

We are seeing three specific HR functions going mobile: benefits administration, time and attendance and talent management.

Mobile technology now allows for you to eliminate a physical clock on the wall and utilize a tablet or mobile phone for punching in and out of work. To maintain integrity, HR can even build geofences with rules on how they allow employees to track time this way.

A trend we are seeing in online benefit enrollment is expanding capabilities with decision support. We have seen vendors providing knock-out questions for not only medical, but all lines of coverage. In addition, vendors are increasing their decision support options during open enrollment, allowing employees to plug in their doctor’s name to see if they’re covered under one plan over another.

To take it one step further, online enrollment is expanding decision support to also include procedures that you are anticipating for the upcoming plan year, which prompts the system to point you in the right direction for the best plan that is most cost effective and offers the coverage you need.

As you know, a major focus of HR is to ensure a company is recruiting and retaining top talent. In addition to other measures, mobile technology enables organizations become an employer of choice, develop and implement a comprehensive talent strategy, retain top talent by fostering an environment of growth and enhance benefit offerings.

We would love to hear about your experience or concerns about integrating a mobile HR system into your organization. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to the Lockton HR Technology & Outsourcing team at