Employee self-service (web-based application)
|This article does not cite any references or sources. (December 2009)|
Employee self-service (ESS) is a web-based application that provides employees with access to their personal records and their payroll details. The most common features of ESS allows employees to change their own address, contact details and next of kin. Often included with ESS is the ability for employees to apply for leave and have that application directed to the employee's manager for consideration. Some applications enable employees to change their bank account details and provide details of payslips, both current and historical. ESS can operate as a feature on an employer's intranet or via a web ASP service.
Recently, a second wave of ESS shifted the focus from these purely efficiency based applications towards empowering employees and managers to take more responsibility for their jobs and development. Career planning, skills profiles, learning, objective settings, appraisals and more and more analytics are increasingly popular ESS applications. This development is driven by improved technology, a better understanding of human resource management (HRM) with a more hands off role of the HR department and by an increasingly web savvy workforce (most notably new employees belonging to the Millennial Generation).
ESS is increasingly popular in the tertiary sector where there is a high proportion of the workforce with computer and internet access. The principal advantage for employers providing ESS is that it is a more efficient means of collecting changes to employees details and distributing payroll related details to employees. This is particularly true for organizations dispersed over a number of physical locations. Additionally, because employee self-service technology eliminates the need for postage and paper printing of these forms, substantial monetary savings can be realized. Examples of employee self-service uses include electronic pay stubs, electronic W-2s, emergency contact forms, employee policy signoffs and many more. HRM professionals increasingly value ESS as a means of empowering employees and reducing paperwork errors and cost. ESS is becoming increasingly popular as more companies 'go green' in an effort to reduce paper waste.