Current Topics in Management

MGMT 4136 Human Resource Management - Information Systems
Fall 2008
November 10, 2008
New HR systems on the horizon: a more flexible architecture promises to revolutionize HR technology
This article discusses the new application known as application service provider(ASP) model. The application software resides on the vendor's system and is accessed by users through a web browser using HTML or by special purpose client software provided by the vendor. Custom client software can also interface to these systems through XML APIs. These APIs can also be used where integration with in-house systems is required.
Common features associated with ASPs include:
  * ASP fully owns and operates the software application(s)
  * ASP owns, operates and maintains the servers that support the software
  * ASP makes information available to customers via the Internet or a "thin client"
  * ASP bills on a "per-use" basis or on a monthly/annual fee
Some strengths are that, software integration issues are eliminated from the client site, software costs for the application are spread over a number of clients, vendors can build more application experience than the in-house staff, key software systems are kept up to date, available, and managed for performance by experts, improved reliability, availability, scalability and security of internal IT systems, a provider's service level agreement guarantees a certain level of service, access to product and technology experts dedicated to available products , reduction of internal IT costs to a predictable monthly fee, and Redeploying IT staff and tools to focus on strategic technology projects that impact the enterprise's bottom line. Another strength is enterprise software that will impact everything from financials to HR is standards-based, service-oriented architecture (SOA). Major enterprise resource planning (ERP) vendors, including Oracle and SAP, are working on their versions. Understanding SOA is key to understanding...