The 10 Best HCM Software To Manage Your HR Needs in One Place

The best HCM software, hand-picked for enterprises, along with benefits, pitfalls, pricing, and more.

Rodrigo Vázquez Mellado
HR and B2B software analyst & advisor, tech writer, musician
October 31, 2022

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Our Expert Picks: The Best HCM Software

Paycor is a robust and data-centric HCM for leaders at US-based companies that want their teams to save time with HR transactional tasks.
As one of the top names in HR software, BambooHR is a flexible, user-friendly, and trustworthy tool with plenty of HCM capabilities. Since they do include payroll for US employees as an optional add-on it can turn into a full HRMS.
Rippling is an HR management platform for everything between onboarding and offboarding, with a soothing design and great user experience.
SAP SuccessFactors is one of the big names in HCM. They’re currently pushing the boundaries of the category itself, calling their product an HXM suite, for Human Experience Management.
Sage People is a scalable end-to-end cloud HCM solution that provides actionable HR analytics in real-time. You can customize dashboards, make recruitment plans, and look deep into metrics like attrition, time-to-hire, and more.
Workday is one of the most popular people management software products out there, specifically geared towards enterprises.
UKG is the merger of Ultimate Software and Kronos. As such, it brings over 70 years of experience with People tech into the HCM space. Ultipro became UKG Pro, their feature-rich HRMS, packing features like performance and time & attendance management.
Ceridian are the makers of Dayforce, a modern cloud HCM platform that can manage the entire employee lifecycle.
Oracle is one of the top names in IT. Their HCM is popular among enterprises with more than 1,000 employees and boasted for its implementation and CS practices.

The 10 Best HCM Software To Manage Your HR Needs in One Place

The best HCM software, hand-picked for enterprises, along with benefits, pitfalls, pricing, and more.

Rodrigo Vázquez Mellado, HR and B2B software analyst & advisor, tech writer, musician Oct 31, 2022

Finding the best HCM software for your business starts with understanding what human capital management is. More than a software category, HCM is a set of practices within human resources that aim towards increasing the value that employees bring to the company.

According to the Gartner Glossary, HCM focuses on providing specific competencies for workers and is implemented in three categories: workforce acquisition, workforce management, and workforce optimization.

Hence why it’s tricky to differentiate between an HRMS and HCM software. Some vendors have made their products with HCM practices in mind, so they can be called both an HCM and an HRMS. Through hours of research, we’ve rounded up the best HCM software vendors based on their features for human capital management, as well as quality of support, implementation, customer success, UX, and much more.

We spend hundreds of hours researching the best HR and recruiting software so you don’t have to.  We never take money from vendors during our research phase and rely heavily on practitioners and experts to help us recommend the right software.  However we may earn a fee if you click on vendor links on this page.

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Hours Researched
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Experts Consulted
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Vendors Reviewed

Our criteria: How we chose the best vendors

We take our research seriously and want to make sure we are presenting our readers with the very best solutions in a given software category.  Here's how we select vendors to be in our buyer guides:

  • Product: We want to have a deep understanding of a vendor's product before recommending it.  This usually means getting a demo by a senior executive (their CEO, head of product, etc), and/or using the product ourselves to make sure it has a solid UI, intuitive workflows, and the features to make it a best in class offering.
  • User feedback: We do our best to understand what users say when they experience this product.  User input allows us to accomplish a more thorough due diligence of products, put new vendors on our radar, and generally make sure we are presenting the right products to our readers.
  • Financial metrics: We are very much finance nerds and so use a product's retention rates, growth, profitability, and scale to understand whether or not it is truly best in class.
  • Best for a use case: Sometimes the best solution is the cheapest, the best tool for international companies, or the best for startups. We try to include a diversity of solutions so that our readers can find the tool that is best for what they need.

Here's more detail if you want to read further on how we research vendors.

In this guide you'll find

An Intro On HCM Software

Finding the best HCM software for your business starts with understanding what human capital management is. More than a software category, HCM is a set of practices within human resources that aim towards increasing the value that employees bring to the company.

According to the Gartner Glossary, HCM focuses on providing specific competencies for workers and is implemented in three categories: workforce acquisition, workforce management, and workforce optimization.

Hence why it’s tricky to differentiate between an HRMS and HCM software. Some vendors have made their products with HCM practices in mind, so they can be called both an HCM and an HRMS. Through hours of research, we’ve rounded up the best HCM software vendors based on their features for human capital management, as well as quality of support, implementation, customer success, UX, and much more.

Featured in

Top Human Capital Management Software

We track thousands of HRTech solutions, these are the best HCM Software vendors for several business sizes and regions per our research and expert council as of 2022.

Paycor

Review:

Aside from having payroll, employee experience, recruiting, benefits, and performance management, Paycor stands out from most HCM vendors for having some of the most potent HR analytics out there. They provide a custom company dashboard that leaders can build out as they please, choosing from literally hundreds of reports such as headcount trends by employment time, projected headcount, and voluntary turnover by tenure, just to mention a few.  

Further, some of their reports use secondary pools of data in order to provide benchmark analysis in real time. This effectively helps executives and HR leaders alike better understand their workforce and how their efforts stack up in comparison to similar companies.

Paycor

Stats:

  • Paycor is used by over 40,000 businesses
  • Raised $270M in private equity during 2020
  • Went public in July 2021, raising $426M in their IPO
  • 2080+ employees
  • Founded in 1990
  • Paycor is used by over 40,000 businesses
  • Raised $270M in private equity during 2020
  • Went public in July 2021, raising $426M in their IPO
  • 2080+ employees
  • Founded in 1990

Paycor

Pricing:

Fees will vary depending on your number of employees and the modules you add.

Paycor's ACA Connect service is an add-on to their greater HR software. Therefore, you're paying for an entire HCM. The ACA is relevant only to companies with over 50 employees. This means you'll have to pay for their Mid-Market plan, which doesn't have listed prices online. You'll have to meet with their sales team to negotiate pricing. However, you do get the bonus of a free first three months.

Best For

Companies in the US with up to 1,000 employees, mainly in manufacturing, healthcare, food and beverage, non profits, and professional sport organizations.

BambooHR

Review:

BambooHR deserves a mention within the HCM space (in most HR tech categories, really), even though they can technically be either an HRIS or an HRMS, depending on the package and add-ons you pick. 

Their HCM core features like benefit tracking, reporting, employee directory provide sufficient visibility for short and long-term decision making. Other HCM features like performance management and time tracking, however, are only offered as add-ons. This flexible packaging, however, is part of what makes BambooHR so popular among teams in all many sorts of industries. It’s a tool that can adapt to your evolving needs and there’s likely always something to discover.

BambooHR

Stats:

  • Over 20,000 active client organizations
  • Millions of employees active on their system
  • 45,000+ new hires onboarded per month, on average
  • Over 20,000 active client organizations
  • Millions of employees active on their system
  • 45,000+ new hires onboarded per month, on average

BambooHR

Pricing:

Pricing is not disclosed upfront, but they do offer a free trial of their all-in-one software and then go out of their way to find a version that will suit you. Before they come up with a personalized quote that will align with your budget, however, they are also likely to extend your free trial upon request or even give you a free demo of the advanced features.

Pricing is not disclosed upfront, but they do offer a free trial of their all-in-one software and then go out of their way to find a version that will suit you. Before they come up with a personalized quote that will align with your budget, however, they are also likely to extend your free trial upon request or even give you a free demo of the advanced features.

Best For

BambooHR is a good fit for companies looking for a very customizable HR product, with pricing that reflects their needs. It’s also popular among teams that are partially or even fully remote.

Rippling

Review:

Rippling is a relatively new company started by Zenefits alumni. They focus on helping small and medium organizations kill HR and IT busywork with one solution. An interesting thing about them is that they try to make their software easy to use and intuitive not just for HR professionals and recruiters but for the CEO, IT staff, and any team member who will interact with the product.

Their product falls in line with what you’d expect from a Silicon Valley-based startup: a great UI, eye-catching design, and fast performance. Notably, they also have over 500 integrations with everything from Slack to GitHub.

Rippling

Stats:

  • Named a “Next $1B Startup” by Forbes in early 2020
  • Became an actual $1B startup just months after that mention, getting valued at $1.35 billion in August 2020
  • Over 1,000 reviews on the main business software sites, all averaging 4.9 stars
  • Over 4,000 health insurance plans to choose from on platform
  • 500+ integrations
  • Over 1,000 reviews on the main business software sites, all averaging 4.9 stars

Rippling

Pricing:

Rippling’s pricing starts at $8 per month per user and will vary depending on which modules you’d like to use (or if you want the whole platform) and for how many people.

Rippling starts at $8 per month per user, but the final fee you pay will vary depending on which modules you'd like to use (or if you want the whole platform) and for how many people.

Best For

SMBs with a strong need for automation in HR processes

UKG

Review:

Ultimate Software was mainly known for its core HR tech product, UltiPro. Now that they’ve merged with Kronos, UltiPro has been rebranded as UKG Pro. The new company behind it, the Ultimate Kronos Group, aims to combine HCM capabilities with robust people data and analytics. Further, thanks in part to the merger, word is that the service delivery of the HR teams that use UKG has improved considerably.

UKG

Stats:

  • Ranked #6 on Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work for list
  • Valued at $22 billion after the merger 
  • Included on Glassdoor’s 2020 Best Places to Work ranking
  • Named as a Magic Quadrant Leader 2021 in Cloud HCM Suites by Garner, for the fifth consecutive year
  • Customers include more than half of the Fortune 1000 listed companies
  • Handling over 51 million People records in the cloud
  • Generating an estimated $3 billion in revenue per year
  • Customers in 165 countries
  • A customer base of more than 50,000 businesses and 3.2 million users
  • UKG Pro customers on average get an ROI of $3.88 on each dollar invested
  • Consistent 96% customer retention
  • 12,000+ employees

UKG

Pricing:

Pricing for UKG Pro is not available on their website. However, it is usually on a per-employee-per-month basis, either billed annually or monthly. You’d need to contact a sales representative for an accurate quote. However, our research has shown that licenses tend to start at $600.00 per year for every 5 users.

Best For:

Companies looking for an enterprise-grade product, regardless of HR team size. *UKG also rebranded Kronos Workforce Ready as UKG Ready, which can be a great HR hub for smaller teams.

SAP SuccessFactors

Review:

SAP is trying to transform traditional human capital management into a more employee-oriented endeavor. Through their HXM, they are trying to put the worker’s experience as the main focus of the way companies engage with their people. Their product helps HR managers deliver experiences that resonate with employees while shaping their strategy.

One thing to consider is that SAP, like many of the biggest companies doing HCM products, has been criticized for having a frustrating user experience. With their shift towards being an HXM, however, it looks like they're tackling that issue and moving in the right direction.

SAP SuccessFactors

Stats:

SAP SuccessFactors

Pricing:

Pricing for SAP’s HXM suite is only available upon request.

Best For:

Enterprises looking to improve UX

Ceridian

Review:

The Dayforce HCM by Ceridian unifies data from all stages of the employee lifecycle for better decision-making and data-driven insights. It combines HR, payroll, benefits, workforce management, and talent management.

In particular, Dayforce is built with a flexible rules engine that helps address complex regulatory requirements while providing real-time updates and calculations.

Ceridian

Stats:

  • Certified as a Great Place to Work in 2020
  • 5,800+ employees

Ceridian

Pricing:

Pricing for the Dayforce HCM suite is not provided upfront.

Best For:

Ceridian’s Dayforce HCM is best for enterprises with over 1,000 employees.

Sage People

Review:

Sage People is a customizable HR suite with HCM capabilities. It’s a great option for companies in the small to medium enterprise range (150 - 5k employees) that have a global presence. It’s a very broad product that also integrates with the rest of Sage's ERP suite, which includes tools for finance, accounting, business management, and more.

Sage People

Stats:

  • 400k+ users
  • Presence in over 150 countries
  • #1 multinational HR and People management system on Salesforce

Sage People

Pricing:

While the pricing for Sage People isn't disclosed, you can take an interactive tour and see the tool for yourself. Afterwards, you can get in touch with their team to get a customized quote.

Best For:

SMBs with a distributed team, especially those that use Salesforce. Also medium enterprises with a global workforce.

Oracle

Review:

Oracle’s HCM suite is built for the cloud and made for connecting every single HR process. It’s good for teams looking to have a single source of truth for HR data in order to improve decision making. Their product includes talent management, recruiting, workforce management, payroll, and HCM analytics. The interface is not the best-looking out there and UX can be frustrating for employees and HR alike, but they're still one of the top choices for large scale implementations.

Oracle

Stats:

  • 80% of product updates come from customer feedback
  • 98% of roadmap commitments are met

Oracle

Pricing:

Oracle doesn’t provide pricing details for their HCM upfront. To get a quote, you’d have to request a demo, but they also offer interactive product tours that you can take before chatting to a sales rep.

Best For:

Enterprises with over 1,000 employees in most parts of the world.

WorkDay

Review:

Workday is one of the best talent management systems and HCM suites particularly for large enterprises. Although it is true that their reputation is not the best with users and the HR teams that have to implement the solution, if you’re in need of a product that can scale, checks the necessary IT/Infosec boxes, and can be implemented across large global companies, Workday HCM is worth looking into.

WorkDay

Stats:

  • Workday is used by over 45% of the Fortune 500 companies. 
  • As of 2022, they count over 7,000+ users.

WorkDay

Pricing:

The exact pricing details of Workday HCM aren’t provided by the vendor, since they’ll likely tailor their offer to your business size and needs. They also don’t offer a free trial, but you can see the tool for yourself through their demo videos online.

Best For:

Large enterprises

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Last Advice on Buying HCM software

To wrap this up, we’ll assume that you’ve read everything above and have a couple of vendors in mind to reach out to and book a demo. To send you off to this part of the buying process, there’s one last piece of advice that can help a great deal when evaluating HCM software providers. 

These demos should revolve around your HCM requirements, and you should try to avoid having one-size-fits-all demonstrations whenever possible. To do this, share your list of requirements and questions beforehand, asking them to show that specific functionality. Since reporting is such a big part of human capital management, you could even give them data for them to run into the system.

This way, you and your team will get to truly see how much of a fit the tool is for you, as well as gauging for factors like intuitiveness and overall user experience. Couple this guide with resources like ADP’s 10 tips for HCM vendor evaluation or our very own HR & recruitment software buying organizer, and you’ll be on your way to find the perfect platform for your HCM needs.

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