Shifting Away from a One-Stop Shop

Guest post: Thanks to our partnership with Leapgen, we're delighted to have contributions from their team of experts. Thank you to Lynsey Hathcock for sharing her wealth of knowledge in the field of Digital Employee Experience.


As the world continues to change around us, the needs of the workforce have faced unprecedented amounts of change. As a result, the role of HR has been forced to conduct a deep retrospect to keep up. HR leaders are asking critical questions that fundamentally reshape the value proposition of an HR organization. 

Questions such as: 

As technology booms, how do we best support our people without losing personalization? 

How can we utilize our HR strategy as a differentiator? 


How can HR become more agile and nimble to keep up with the growing demands of the business? 

Over the course of the next few blog series, we will discuss a number of changes in how HR operates. Everything from the rise in employee data, to how to engage a more remote workforce. But perhaps the most fundamental shift we’ve seen in recent years is the foundational shift in how to leverage technology to support HR. More specifically, why the one-stop shop approach to HR systems is no longer the promised land that we originally envisioned. 

Starting in the early 2000s, HR technology took a very important step in migrating to the cloud. The benefits to this were obvious; systems required less maintenance and were constantly evolving and improving with minimal overhead needed from your resources. As part of this, the enterprise management model was born. 

The promise? A one-stop shop for all of your HR needs. Recruiting, we do that! Talent management, there is a module for that. Need to run your payroll and move your employee to a new team, we can do it all on one system. The thought being that by minimizing the number of systems, your business could more efficiently engage with HR. On top of that, if you made the system intuitive and friendly, managers and leaders would want to use it. 

While great in theory, it presented a number of challenges. First, it didn’t take into consideration the need for specialization. Does your organization have complex payroll needs? Do you have unique or high-volume hiring needs? The one-stop shop approach wasn’t designed to provide the best tools in the industry. It was relying on the fact that the benefits you would realize from having everything in one place would outweigh some functionality limitations. 

In addition, we didn’t necessarily create a business-friendly system to interact with. While improvements were definitely made and there were some inherent experience boosters; most enterprise model systems were still very much designed from an HR first mentality. We still relied heavily on HR terminology such as ‘job change’, ‘position management’, and ‘leave of absence’. And these systems were still very modular and COE structured as opposed to thinking through the experience needs of the managers and employees. 

As a result, for many, these systems were still seen as more of an administrative system than a valuable tool that provided you with everything you needed to better manage your people. 

So what’s the solution? The past few years have given rise to a new answer. The first-stop shop approach. 

This has a similar value proposition as the one-stop shop approach in that we want to provide our managers and employees with a single point of entry to manage their HR needs. However, it differs in two very different ways.

First, the first-stop approach leverages what is known as an experience layer. This serves as the digital point of entry for the user. This allows for the simplicity of having to only start in one location but is enhanced by the ability to customize your experience based on the unique needs of your people. This allows you to design an experience that will resonate with your organization; to tell your HR story in a compelling and intuitive manner. 

The next obvious benefit is that the first stop-stop approach allows you to easily integrate into whatever system you would like while still keeping the single point of entry. This inherently simplifies the experience without sacrificing key functionality. While there is still a wealth of benefits to minimizing and consolidating the number of tools needed to manage your organization, this new approach allows for more flexibility should your business require it. 

One thing is certain, the first-stop shop approach is really just getting started. Organizations are quickly learning there are a number of creative ways they can enhance the day-to-day experience of their people and gain valuable insights on their talent. As the experience layers evolve, those that can best leverage the tools available to create a personalized and engaging experience will be well-positioned as industry leaders for cultivating and retaining top talent. A clear differentiator in the ever-changing world we live in.  


Up Next: Join us for our next blog post as we explore the rise in data platforms and how to leverage data to better understand your workforce. 


About the author.

Lynsey Hathcock is a seasoned management consultant at Leapgen with over ten years of HR strategy, design thinking, and change enablement experience. Lynsey is passionate about finding innovative ways to help clients craft impactful experiences for their people to ensure intended business outcomes are realized. 

Lynsey has successfully led 25+ Fortune 500 clients to solve complex organizational problems; including digital transformations, global system implementations, and talent management initiatives. She brings diverse industry experience-spanning across retail, pharmaceuticals, financial services, education, and non-profit.

Lynsey holds a Juris Doctor and Masters of Business Administration degree from Wake Forest University and a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Economics from Clemson University. 

Published September 17, 2021 / by Lynsey Hathcock