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The 9 Best HCM Software To Manage Your HR Needs in One Place

We've tested and demoed dozens of tools to create this guide to the best HCM software. Find pricing info, screenshots, pros & cons, and more below.

Rodrigo Vázquez Mellado
Written by
Rodrigo Vázquez Mellado
HR and B2B software analyst and advisor, tech writer and editor, former conversational designer
Contributing Experts
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Last Updated: Nov 27, 2023
TOP
Leading HCM & Flexible Pricing
BambooHR
4.6
Popularity Score
4.5
User Score
4.4
Product  Score
Visit Website
TOP
Leading HCM & Flexible Pricing
BambooHR
4.6
Popularity Score
4.5
User Score
4.4
Product  Score
Learn More
TOP
Influential HCM for US SMBs
Paycor
4.1
Popularity Score
4.2
User Score
4.0
Product  Score
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TOP
Influential HCM for US SMBs
Paycor
4.1
Popularity Score
4.2
User Score
4.0
Product  Score
Learn More
TOP
Top-Rated HCM Suite
Ceridian
4.8
Popularity Score
3.8
User Score
4.5
Product  Score
Visit Website
TOP
Top-Rated HCM Suite
Ceridian
4.8
Popularity Score
3.8
User Score
4.5
Product  Score
Learn More
Over 3 million HR leaders trust our advice

Introduction to 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.

HCMs provide specific competencies for workers in three categories: workforce acquisition, workforce management, and workforce optimization.

We found some great resources that can help you understand the difference between HCM software and HRMS software. Knowing the difference is important because some vendors try to create products with both HCM and HRMS capabilities, and though there is a lot of overlap in there are important differences you should be aware of.

This guide is HCM-focused and, after extensive research, we've compiled a list of top HCM software vendors. We cover the entire feature set, support, implementation, customer success, UX, and more.

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Best HCM Software

BambooHR

: Leading HCM & Flexible Pricing

Paycor

: Influential HCM for US SMBs

Ceridian

: Top-Rated HCM Suite

Rippling

: Prominent Platform for HCM & More

Oracle

: Remarkable Array of HCM Tools

WorkDay

: Eminent Enterprise HCM & More

SAP SuccessFactors

: HCM for Employee Experience

UKG

: Highly-Adaptive HCM Suite

Sage People

: Solid HCM for Global Teams

Our Criteria: Here's How We Chose The Best HCM Software

To select the best HCM software, our experts have gathered user feedback, sought insight from HR thought leaders, and participated in product demos with vendors. In our experience, the right way to go about shopping for an HCM platform breaks down into three general questions. First, are the HR ops functionalities in line with what you need? Second, how easily does it integrate with other systems? And third, does it scale, and will it grow with you?

HR Ops

Every company’s needs differ, and no two HCM systems are alike. Specifically, we assessed products for workforce acquisition, workforce management, workforce optimization, performance reviews, learning management, succession planning, and employee onboarding.

Integration Capabilities

Because it’s so important for your new HCM software to work with your existing tech stack, we assessed each platform’s capacity for seamless integration with the standalone tools you might be using currently, such as accounting software, applicant tracking systems, performance assessment tools, and time and attendance software.

Scale

We assessed each company’s HCM software for exponentially flexible features. Take customization and permissions, for example. As companies grow, their org charts tend to get more complex. Where a simple set of customized permissions would suit a team with only managers and non-managers, a more complex team needs the ability to customize permissions for an elaborate, interwoven network.

For anyone interested in more detail on our selection process, we recommend reading more about our editorial guidelines.

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Compare the Best HCM Software

Popularity Score
Best for
Key Differentiator
Pricing
Free Trial
Customers
Users Score
Product Score

BambooHR

Most Popular
4.6
Teams who need flexibility in package options
Flexible pricing and adaptable features
Custom Pricing
Yes
30,000+
4.5
4.4

Paycor

Most Popular
4.1
SMB needing flexibility and strong payroll capability
Flexible for growing teams and offers discounts often
Custom Pricing
Yes
40,000+
4.2
4.0

Ceridian

Most Popular
4.8
Data-forward product, best for teams who love analytics
Real-time updates on complex regulatory demands
Custom Pricing
Yes
5,000+
3.8
4.5

Rippling

Most Popular
4.2
Full-cycle HCM best for growing teams
Supports US and global payroll for employees
Starts at $8/employee/month
No
2,000+
4.2
4.1

Oracle

Most Popular
4.5
Best for teams who can make use of all features
Well-established with global presence
Custom Pricing
Yes
400,000+ companies
4.3
4.6

WorkDay

Most Popular
4.0
Best for enterprise teams and other operationally complex orgs
Stand-out reporting capabilities
Custom Pricing
No
10,000+
3.9
4.0

SAP SuccessFactors

Most Popular
4.0
Teams that prioritize user experience
Focus on humanizing and employee experience
Starts from $6.3/user/month
No
5000+ companies
3.9
4.0

UKG

Most Popular
4.0
Optimal for companies with growing, global teams
Ultimate Community feature fosters networking among users
Custom Pricing
No
80,000+
4.2
4.1

Sage People

Most Popular
4.1
Custom Pricing
Yes
1,000,000+ companies
4.3
4.2
Phil Strazzulla
HR Tech Expert, Harvard MBA, Software Enthusiast

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Detailed Reviews of the Best HCM Software

BambooHR

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BambooHR
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Popularity Score
4.6 / 5
User Score
4.5 / 5
Product Score
4.4 / 5

Why we picked BambooHR

We picked BambooHR for its flexibility, UX/UI, and reliability. It is a leading HR software suite with extensive HCM capabilities and also offers optional payroll services for US employees, effectively transforming it into a complete HRMS solution.

PROS

  • Offers flexible pricing and customizable packages.
  • User-friendly interface streamlines employee management for both employees and HR teams.
  • Flexible packaging and custom pricing is the way they roll. You can pick out one or two packages and pick other modules as add-ons based on your needs. 
  • Very simple and straightforward tool, easy to use.

CONS

  • Payroll limited to the U.S.-based workers.
  • Support hours limited to U.S. time zones
  • Some modules, including time and attendance, performance management, and surveys are available as add-ons with BambooHR.
  • Payroll is only available for US-based employees 
  • Customer support is only offered during US business hours.
  • Some modules like time tracking, performance management, and surveys are only available as add-ons.
BambooHR dashboard screenshot - one of the best HCM Software

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 Customers

Among the 20,000+ companies that use BambooHR, you’d find names like Quora, Universal Group, Reddit, Asana, Change.org, University of Maryland, Grammarly, Stance, Postmates, Wistia, the Jacksonville Jaguars, and ZipRecruiter.

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.

Best For

BambooHR can be an ideal choice for companies in search of a customizable HCM tool that provides pricing options that reflect their requirements. Additionally, it is well-regarded by teams that are partially or fully remote.

BambooHR in action
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Paycor

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Paycor
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Popularity Score
4.1 / 5
User Score
4.2 / 5
Product Score
4 / 5

Why we picked Paycor

Paycor is an HCM system that offers a wide range of features, including payroll, time tracking, benefits administration, and employee self-service. The software is designed for small and medium-sized teams to streamline their HR processes and improve employee engagement.

PROS

  • Paycor has a robust payroll solution that is easy to navigate.
  • User-friendly employee self-service portal.
  • Has multiple plans for small businesses and custom plans for teams with 50-1000 employees.
  • Often runs discount programs.
  • Works well on both Android and iOS devices.
  • Is acquiring the people development platform Verb to strengthen its learning management system.
  • Paycor payroll solution and mobile app are both straightforward to use.
  • Intuitive self-service employee portal.
  • Offers multiple modules for small businesses and custom plans for teams with 50-1000 employees.
  • Unlimited payrolls.
  • Offers discounts frequently. Though not listed on their site, a free trial is available to those who contact the support team directly.
  • On-demand pay is available for all plans.
  • With the acquisition of the people development platform Verb, it has improved its employee learning experience.

CONS

  • Lacks transparent pricing.
  • Customer support isn’t very responsive.
  • Not the right choice for businesses with 1000+ employees or require advanced customization.
  • Undisclosed pricing.
  • Customer support is reported to be slow at times.
  • It is not a good fit for teams with 1000+ employees or those requiring advanced customization to meet their unique requirements.
Paycor dashboard screenshot - one of the best HCM System

Paycor Review

Paycor is easy to use and can be customized to meet the needs of businesses with 2 to 1,000 headcounts. The software also offers a variety of payroll and HR features, such as ledger integration, AutoRun, direct deposit, on-demand pay, tax withholding, and reporting tools.

Paycor's employee self-service portal allows employees to access their pay stubs, timesheets, and benefits. Employees can also change their contact and banking info. Through Paycor, employees can finish onboarding paperwork online, choose the benefits package and payment methods, and update their information as needed. Moreover: all of this can be done from the app.

In May 2023, the software just rolled out a new feature named PayCor Engage on its mobile application. This newly launched feature allows employees and employers to interact with each other on the app, which is a massive benefit for engagement and transparency, especially for remote employees.

Paycor has also just acquired the people development platform Verb. We hope that with this acquisition, there will be an uptick in customer service and reporting quality in addition to improving its employee learning functionality.

Regarding Paycor’s downsides, we have heard some users complaining that the support team can be hard to contact at times. As for reporting and analytics features, Paycor charges extra for some custom reports, which are, unfortunately, less intuitive than one would hope.

Paycor Customers

Wendy’s, McDonald’s, Detroit Zoo, The Cincinnati Bengals, The YMCA.

Paycor Pricing

Paycor pricing varies and depends on your team size and the modules you select.

Best For

SMBs looking for an HCM with flexibility and strong payroll capability will benefit most from Paycor.

Paycor in action
Reviewer's Rating
5/10

We use Paycor for our payroll, PTO accrual/tracking, recruiting and applicant tracking, benefit enrollment, and performance evals. We also use it for discipline tracking, and we use their LMS.

What do you like about this tool?

I like the HR piece. It is pretty user friendly. I love the recruiting tool. It's my favorite I've ever used. The texting feature of the recruiting tool has been a big help for us.

Why did your organization buy this tool, and how long have you used it for?

We have been with Paycor since 2010. We bought it as our HRIS tool. We use it for HR tracking, recruiting, payroll, time, benefits, performance reviews, etc. I like that almost everything we need is in one tool. It helps to be able to use it for most of what we need.

What do you dislike about this tool?

Their customer service has been awful since covid. They have pushed more and more on the client so that they can expand. It takes way too long to get some tickets resolved.

How is this tool different than their competitors?

I've used Peoplesoft previously and much prefer Paycor to it. It is easier to use for both the employee and employer.

What Instructions should people think about when buying this type of tool?

Customer Service is so important, which is hard because I think many of these providers do not do that well. Functionality is important. They do this well on some modules. I do not like their time or benefits tool very well.

How has this tool changed or evolved over time to meet users needs?

It has certainly evolved but I think it's away from the customer's needs.

What specific type of user or organization is this tool very good for?

I think it would be good for a tech organization where employees are all at their computers most of the day.

What specific type of user or organization would this tool not be a good fit for?

Organizations with populations that are not computer friendly

Ceridian

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Ceridian
Learn More
Popularity Score
4.8 / 5
User Score
3.8 / 5
Product Score
4.5 / 5

Why we picked Ceridian

Ceridian is the creator of Dayforce, a cloud HCM platform that efficiently handles the employee lifecycle end to end, including payroll, benefits, workforce management, and talent management.

PROS

CONS

Our reviewers took screenshot of Ceridian HCM Solution during the demo

Ceridian Review

Dayforce HCM by Ceridian consolidates data from all employee lifecycle stages, enabling informed decisions and data-driven insights. This comprehensive platform integrates HR, payroll, benefits, workforce management, and talent management.

Notably, Dayforce features a flexible rules engine that handles intricate regulatory demands, delivering real-time updates and computation.

Ceridian Customers

  • Guitar Center
  • Danone
  • Spirit Aerosystems
  • El Pollo Loco
  • Crescent Bank

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.

Ceridian in action
Reviewer's Rating
7/10

As an HR leader working in the COE, I used Ceridian as an administrator. I had access to add and remove reports, run reports for North America, Canada, and Mexico, and control benefits administration - including open enrollment, life event changes, reconciliations, etc. I used Ceridian as the main HRIS for the company I was employed in at the time.

What do you like about this tool?

I loved that the platform reached our global audience and that our employees could manage their own data in the system. I also liked the reporting functions and how easy it was to make benefit changes in the system from an administrative view.

Why did your organization buy this tool, and how long have you used it for?

We chose Ceridian because it was one of the only systems that had the global support we needed. We needed a robust system that would allow our employees to manage their data in the US, EMEA, Canada and Mexico, as well as hone into reporting functions easily for our COE. I used Ceridian for almost 4 years, managing benefits, reporting, and employee data. I trained my team how to use it, so they could emulate this training at their respective locations.

What do you dislike about this tool?

Ceridian is not the most user-friendly interface. It is not impossible to use, but for anyone who struggles with tech, it can be a challenge. Companies with large populations may also find it easy to get analysis paralysis, as all of the reports can be overwhelming and hard to sort through. Lastly, it only gets easier with practice, so if you are not on this platform often it will not get easier to navigate. One truly must familiarize themselves with it in order to understand how to navigate it.

How is this tool different than their competitors?

What sets Ceridian apart is its global capability and reporting functionality. I have yet to come across another platform that can store the amount of data this can and pull it together in the same way Ceridian can.

What Instructions should people think about when buying this type of tool?

The size and location of their organization/employees, data analytics, user interface and price.

How has this tool changed or evolved over time to meet users needs?

I think they are trying to make a dashboard more user-friendly but otherwise, I think they know their strength and lean into that.

What specific type of user or organization is this tool very good for?

Large global organizations

What specific type of user or organization would this tool not be a good fit for?

Small businesses operating on a local scale.

Rippling

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Rippling
Learn More
Popularity Score
4.2 / 5
User Score
4.2 / 5
Product Score
4.1 / 5

Why we picked Rippling

Rippling is a prominent platform for HCM. And more than that, it gives growing teams flexibility in their shopping. All Rippling modules — applicant tracking, onboarding, self-service, payroll, benefits, time tracking, training, engagement, and reporting — can be purchased according to customers’ needs.

PROS

  • Rippling offers a full-feature HCM with great automation support.
  • Payroll automatically updates work hours, deductions, and tax filings.
  • Supports both US and global payroll.
  • Strong integration capabilities (500 third-party apps).
  • The Benefits module enables users to collaborate with their preferred broker.
  • Provides a mobile app.
  • Modules can be purchased separately or wholly as a full suite.
  • All-in-one platform for employee management + PEO services offered, and even a suite of other IT products 
  • With 500 integrations, it’s very likely that they integrate with other key tools from your tech stack.
  • Operates globally with any currency
  • Workflow automation
  • Analytics opportunities
  • Provides a holistic view of company outflows—headcount costs included

CONS

  • No payroll automation
  • There’s no free trial, not a tool for tight budgets
  • Telephone support is an added fee
  • Not a great fit for teams greater than 2,000
  • The mobile app can be slow and doesn’t perform as well as the web browser version.
  • Total buy-in to Rippling is essential 
  • Very SMB-oriented, in case you’re a larger company. 
  • New features tend to be buggy in ways that tech teams are not accustomed to fixing
Rippling dashboard screenshot - one of the best HCM Solution

Rippling Review

Rippling stands out as a strong HCM platform, providing a complete cycle of human capital management functions, encompassing acquisition, management, and optimization.

The features are rich in automation and customization, while the UI maintains a clean look that soothes the eyes. We’re surprised at how fast the solution has evolved since it started the business back in 2016.

Integration capabilities are a standout feature for Rippling, with over 500 software solutions connected across various categories. The self-service feature empowers employees to manage onboarding, benefits, compensation, and personal information through mobile accessibility.

Furthermore, Rippling has taken good care of workforce management and optimization, offering US and global payroll automation for faster payroll processing. Running payroll for employees and contractors is quick, taking only a few minutes. The synchronization between the time tracking app and payment app ensures accurate work hours, deductions, and tax filing. Additionally, the benefits administration tool offers flexibility, allowing us to select our preferred broker and choose from 4,000 plans.

However, we expected more accessible customer service, as Rippling doesn’t offer 24/7 support, and phone consultations come at an additional cost. Additionally, the requirement to purchase the Rippling Unity module to access other modules limits flexibility.

Rippling Customers

Vox, Maximum Games, Superhuman, Compass Coffee, Highnoon.

Rippling Pricing

Rippling pricing starts at $8 per employee per month. Contact the Sales rep for more info.

Best For

Rippling is a powerful HCM for both US-based and international teams to manage their workforce. With its current feature set, the ideal team size is from 50 to 2,000 team members.

Rippling in action
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Oracle

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Oracle
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Popularity Score
4.5 / 5
User Score
4.3 / 5
Product Score
4.6 / 5

Why we picked Oracle

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.

PROS

CONS

Oracle HCM - one of the best human capital management systems

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 Customers

  • Axa
  • Blackboard
  • Deutsche Bahn
  • Marriott, Cisco

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.

Oracle in action
Reviewer's Rating
9/10

Oracle is being used to manage each employee's onboarding, personal information, payroll, attendance & leaves management, rewards and performance management, cost management, workflows, and training development.

What do you like about this tool?
  • It helps us manage and analyze each employee's performance.
  • Employees' attendance records are efficiently managed, and their payroll is being auto processed.
  • The mobile application version is being used by employees to update their details, professional qualifications etc, efficiently.

Why did your organization buy this tool, and how long have you used it for?

My organization has been using Oracle’s Human Capital Management solution for the last 4 years, and it is being used to manage employees from the recruitment process to the performance management. Oracle HCM is being used to analyze and report on employee performance

What do you dislike about this tool?
  • Since Oracle is not a user-friendly software, some training is needed in order to use this software.
  • Legacy data is not easily uploaded with this software.
  • The Oracle system is expensive for small organizations.

How is this tool different than their competitors?

Oracle is a cloud-based solution and far better than other competitor software. Oracle HCM provides all aspects of human resource functions, and its robust features and analytical reports make this software a good option.

What Instructions should people think about when buying this type of tool?

If an organization is looking to manage all employee data, including their personal and professional information, and use the same system to track and evaluate their performance, then this software provides all solutions in one platform.

How has this tool changed or evolved over time to meet users needs?
What specific type of user or organization is this tool very good for?

All organizations that have over 1000 employees and they want to manage each employee's details and performance with analytics in one place.

What specific type of user or organization would this tool not be a good fit for?

I believe that all organizations who are having 1000 below employees and are considered as small organizations should not be a good fit for Oracle as its annual cost is relatively high.

WorkDay

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WorkDay
Learn More
Popularity Score
4 / 5
User Score
3.9 / 5
Product Score
4 / 5

Why we picked WorkDay

Workday is a popular HRMS solution, primarily targeting enterprises. It offers a centralized source for managing workforce administration, engagement, compensation, and benefits data across various worker types. This includes contingent workers, employees, contractors, and retirees, making it a comprehensive solution for all aspects of workforce management.

PROS

  • Workday process flows are easily adjustable to conform to global and local needs.
  • Self-service is available for both employees and managers.
  • AI-driven assistance for detecting skills gaps.
  • Mobile apps...
  • Offers phone, email, community, and live chat support.
  • Complies with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and includes a robust, configurable security model.
  • Accessible customer support from the community, live chat, and telephone.
  • Compatible with 300 HR systems such as ERP/GL, CRM, HR, and PSA.
  • Configurable dashboard with AI and ML-driven insights.
  • Ability to maintain real-time alignment of budgets and workforce plans.
  • SOC 2 Type 2 compliance.

CONS

  • Not transparent with pricing.
  • No free trial is available.
  • Long implementation process (4.5 months on average).
  • Navigation for beginners can be confusing and may need training to understand all features.
  • Mobile apps aren't very user-friendly.
  • Undisclosed pricing.
  • No free trial for its talent management software.
  • Time-consuming implementation period (average 4.5 months).
  • Challenge navigating for first-time users may require training.
  • Issues with logging in were reported by users.
Workday HCM Software screenshot

WorkDay Review

Workday excels at personalization by tailoring recommendations, tasks, and search results to individual users based on their roles.

Other aspects of the business processes functionality stand out, too, especially for multinational businesses. WorkDay helps teams achieve operational consistency while also allowing customization of workflows for specific location requirements.

The platform also offers performance assessment capabilities that provide visibility into the workforce's current capabilities. This enables swift identification of skills gaps and facilitates prompt action in sourcing and training internal talent development.

Despite its popularity with larger organizations, Workday's mobile app underperforms compared to the software itself. Users report issues with the time clock system, frequent crashing, and sign-in problems on both Android and iOS platforms.

Additionally, the implementation process for Workday's HCM can be time-consuming, averaging around 4.5 months, and involving multiple individuals and departments.

WorkDay Customers

Quicken Loans, AstraZeneca, Target, Dell, Bank of America.

WorkDay Pricing

Workday pricing is undisclosed on the website. You need to contact Sales for a quote.

Best For

Workday is awesome for large enterprises with multiple branches that are looking for an inclusive HCM solution that is scalable and with great reporting capabilities.

WorkDay in action
Reviewer's Rating
7/10

What I like the most about Workday is its simple interface that you don't have to ask your Boss how to use it. It is very intuitive and easy to find what you are looking for. I worked for 3 companies before and ALL of them are using Workday. It is famous for being so straight-forward and simple and yet a very reliable tool between the company and the employees.

What do you like about this tool?

It is user friendly. It is easy to teach it to employees outside of our Human Resources department. There are so many features!

Why did your organization buy this tool, and how long have you used it for?

We bought Workday to ensure we had a financial system that would work with our HR systems. This helped us accurately run payroll. We use this Workday for storing the employee information, such personal details, previous employment details and contact details. It helps to track the goal setting to yearly appraisal feedback. We can easily be able to track the compensation revision history as well. It is a highly secured website. It requires a password + additional two security questions to login. This ensures the additional safety of the data.

What do you dislike about this tool?

It can be confusing to navigate at times. That is partially the software itself but more so how our team decided to set everything up. We are still adding more and more and making this process better for our users.

How is this tool different than their competitors?

I would consider it very similar to Paycom. I would recommend Paycom over Workday by a slight margin.

What Instructions should people think about when buying this type of tool?

Workday is an excellent choice if you are the owner of a business with 250 to 1,000-plus employees and require workforce management tools (onboarding and training, scheduling and leave management), as well as HR analytics tools (pay management and performance evaluation and management)

How has this tool changed or evolved over time to meet users needs?

It has evolved to take on more employees with little effort.

What specific type of user or organization is this tool very good for?

Human Resources, Management, Financial Department

What specific type of user or organization would this tool not be a good fit for?

A smaller or start-up business.

SAP SuccessFactors

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SAP SuccessFactors
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Popularity Score
4 / 5
User Score
3.9 / 5
Product Score
4 / 5

Why we picked SAP SuccessFactors

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.

PROS

CONS

Our reviewers took screenshot of SAP SuccessFactors Human Capital Management Software during the demo

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 Customers

  • American Airlines
  • Ernst & Young
  • Hero Group
  • Terex
  • Watco Companies

SAP SuccessFactors Pricing

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

Best For

Enterprises looking to improve UX

SAP SuccessFactors in action
Reviewer's Rating
9/10

We use SAP-Success Factors daily to create training content for all of our district employees. We have a number of mandatory training sessions to meet compliance goals and we use SAP- Success Factors for that. We are able to create SCORM video files and post these to Success Factors. We can add additional components to the training packages as well to test employees' assessment results. We are also in the early stages of working on using Success Factors for employee performance management.

What do you like about this tool?

It makes training compliance much easier for us. It is good for large enterprise environments. It is highly customizable.

Why did your organization buy this tool, and how long have you used it for?

My organization bought SAP-Success Factors to use as an LMS tool. We've been using it for about 4 years. Prior to using SAP-Success Factors, getting our large pool of employees to complete mandatory training was difficult. Now we can create our own training content and manage its delivery much more easily. It also allows us to track compliance on training more easily.

What do you dislike about this tool?

It can be difficult to get the support we need from our SAP representative quickly. It is so customizable that it can be difficult to predict the effect of small changes to the software. The integration with reporting can be slow.

How is this tool different than their competitors?

Success Factors is very robust and highly customizable, and that differentiates them from competitors.

What Instructions should people think about when buying this type of tool?

You should consider the cost, and it can be prohibitive for smaller organizations. It is also so customizable that you will need someone on staff to become an expert to really use it to its fullest. It's also good to consider if you actually need a product this customizable or whether something more plug-and-play would work better for you.

How has this tool changed or evolved over time to meet users needs?

We are constantly meeting with our SAP rep to tweak our setup. They are willing to work with us on this, but it is sometimes a lengthy process.

What specific type of user or organization is this tool very good for?

Success Factors is great for a large enterprise-level organization that needs highly customizable software.

What specific type of user or organization would this tool not be a good fit for?

Success Factors is more than probably any small organization would need in terms of breadth and customizability.

UKG

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UKG
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Popularity Score
4 / 5
User Score
4.2 / 5
Product Score
4.1 / 5

Why we picked UKG

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.

PROS

  • UKG is a robust product with extensive experience in HCM and Workforce Management technology.
  • UKG includes UKG Pro for HRMS and UKG Ready for workforce management, providing a comprehensive set of tools to address various HR needs.
  • Administrators can customize user visibility within the system through configurability.
  • The Ultimate Community provides valuable on-demand information and fosters networking among UKG Pro users.
  • It offers an iOS app and an Android app for employees.
  • Super robust product, packing years of experience with HCM and Workforce Management technology 
  • Since they offer UKG Pro for HRMS and UKG Ready for workforce management, you could arrive at a combination of products that suits many of your HR needs from the same set of tools.

CONS

  • Lacks a unique selling point or specific focus on niche businesses compared to newer tools, making it more suitable for larger companies.
  • Users report ongoing issues with logging in to the Android app.
  • Can be pricey for budget-minded companies.
  • Compared to newer tools, UKG Pro and UKG Ready tend to miss a unique selling point or a specific focus on a certain type of business. While they work great for bigger companies in all sorts of industries, very niche operations might have a hard time adapting to the tool. 
  • Similarly, ​​UKG offers many solutions under one umbrella, so it's not the best fit if you're looking for only a handful of specific use cases.
UKG Pro dashboard screenshot - one of the best Human Capital Management Software

UKG Review

UKG, born from the merger of Ultimate Software and Kronos, delivers a wealth of features designed to meet the needs of enterprise-size teams.

One of the standout qualities of UKG is its ability to handle multiple aspects of employee management. From hiring and onboarding to performance management and succession planning, this platform provides a holistic solution for HR needs.

Drawing on over 70 years of combined experience in people tech, UKG brings a robust and extensive set of capabilities to the table. The fusion of Ultimate Software's UltiPro and Kronos' workforce management expertise has resulted in UKG Pro. This powerful HCM tool offers performance management and time and attendance tracking features.

UKG also provides UKG Ready, derived from Kronos, which enables functions like time and attendance, scheduling, and Affordable Care Act (ACA) compliance. This comprehensive approach eliminates the need for multiple tools and offers a unified experience.

While UKG has many strengths, we did notice a few drawbacks. The platform may not have a distinct selling point or a specific focus on niche businesses compared to newer, more specialized tools available in the market.

Furthermore, there have been reports of login issues with the Android app, which can be frustrating for users needing easy access to information.

Pricing is another aspect that requires careful consideration. UKG may be out of range for organizations with limited budgets. According to our research, licenses generally start at around $600.00 per year for every 5 users.

UKG Customers

Tesla, Marriott, Yamaha, Aramark, Puma, Sony Music, Samsung.

UKG Pricing

  • Pricing for UKG is not provided on their website.
  • Typically, pricing is based on a per-employee-per-month model, with options for annual or monthly billing.
  • To obtain an accurate quote, it is necessary to contact a sales representative. But based on our research, licenses generally start at around $600.00 per year for every 5 users.

Best For

UKG  is an excellent HCM solution for companies operating in the Americas, EMEA, and Asia/Pacific regions, ideally with a minimum employee count of at least 7. UKG Pro can cater to companies with 75-500 employees, while UKG Ready is for companies with a headcount of 500 and beyond.

UKG in action
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Sage People

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Sage People
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Popularity Score
4.1 / 5
User Score
4.3 / 5
Product Score
4.2 / 5

Why we picked Sage People

Sage People offers a scalableHCM cloud solution, covering the entire HR process and delivering real-time actionable HR analytics. With customizable dashboards, users can create recruitment plans and delve into metrics such as attrition and time-to-hire.

PROS

  • Good range of workflows for globally-distributed teams
  • Lots of local expertise from payroll and compliance consultants
  • Good range of workflows for globally-distributed teams
  • Lots of local expertise from payroll and compliance consultants

CONS

  • Integrations offerings are somewhat limited
  • Some users report the mobile app lacks core functionalities
  • Not many integrations
  • Some users have found the mobile app to lack core functionalities
Our reviewers took screenshot of Sage People HCM System during the demo

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 Customers

CRU, Lovehoney, Showbrook Bank, Enigma Industrial Services

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.

Sage People in action
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Pro Tips on HCM Software

Pitfalls of Buying Human Capital Management Software

When in the market for an HCM, the main thing you want to watch out for is picking a system that actually delivers on the practices that define human capital management. Unfortunately, HCM is little more than a buzzword for some people, to the point that they’ll throw the term here and there even if they don’t really have a product that addresses those requirements.

So how do you make sure that you’ll get what you need? If we take a tip from ADP’s 10 tips for evaluating HCM systems, the best bet is to identify your future HCM requirements first. This entails defining what you want to accomplish in terms of employee management and HR functions, and understanding how this may be underserved right now by current tech stack. 

In other words, narrowing down what you expect from the tool and understanding whether it’s an HCM suite you need or just a regular HR management tool. The two tend to be confused with each other, and there are times where you could get the exact functionality you need from core HR software and spend less; even if you need to get additional tools, such as an applicant tracking system or a payroll management tool.

How are Most HCM Solutions Priced?

The thing with almost every HCM solution is that they’re built for the enterprise sector. Some of them are certainly made to accommodate SMBs, or any sort of organization size, but even in those cases, pricing is rarely discussed up front. 

The reason for this, like with a lot of SaaS tools, is that costs can vary widely depending on the actual size of your business (however big) and the needs you’re looking to cover. For instance, some vendors will have a Core HR product that is priced per employee per month, and separately-priced modules for more particular necessities like benefits management and employee experience.

Key HCM Software Features

In order to build a list of requirements and use it effectively to evaluate vendors, it will help to know which are the key HCM software features and how these can support your goals. 

As mentioned at the beginning of this article, human capital management software is implemented in three categories; workforce acquisition, workforce management, and workforce optimization. We’ll look at the key features from each category: 

  • Workforce Acquisition: This part of HCM is concerned with managing applicant tracking, recruitment, onboarding, and pretty much every early stage of the employee lifecycle. For modern tools, it should also include employee self-service so you know the recruitment and onboarding process can be expedited. 
  • Workforce Management: Although sometimes a category of its own, for the purposes of HCM, this is the tier where we could consider all the core HR tools. These include the daily administrative work of the HR department, such as payroll, benefits administration, leave and absence management, time tracking, and an HR service center. For features in this category, you should look mainly towards automation and efficiency. 
  • Workforce Optimization: This is where the ‘workforce as competitive advantage’ part of HCM really finds its momentum. Optimizing the workforce to align with business goals includes performance management, workforce planning, training & learning management, employee engagement, and reporting & analytics. This category is all about generating actionable insights that let you use data in your decision making and make sure that HR is doing its part in steering the workforce in the proper direction.

Questions to Keep in Mind when Demoing HCM Software

As you start demoing various HCM software solutions, it’s important to prepare and attend these meetings with some questions already in mind. These inquiries should aim at answering whether the solution in question will indeed address the main use cases and core needs that you’re looking for. 

Of course, the most concerning of these questions shouldn’t be saved for the demo at all, but rather handled prior, through an email thread for instance, so you won’t waste time on a demo if X or Y solution turns out to be incompatible with your core needs. 

Further, the demo should also help check certain boxes that your internal stakeholders care about, such as integrations, security, data management, self-service portals, features, etc. 

You should write down a list of those questions, share it with your team, and maybe have stakeholders add to it as well. While that list will be unique, here are some common questions when demoing an HCM that should help get you started: 

  • What integrations are key to us? Does it integrate with ATS/payroll system/any other systems you might have that impact workforce management?
  • Does this solution have SSO capabilities?
  • Are there multiple authorization levels for different types of users?
  • Is there a maximum number of employees it will support across the workforce?
  • What types of reporting capabilities does it have?
  • Does it include features to help HR communicate with employees (i.e. mass emails, filtering messages by criteria)?
  • What kind of tasks can we automate or streamline with this tool? How many man hours can we expect to save doing so? 
  • How much technical training will be required?
  • What kinds of technical support are provided?
  • What recruiting capabilities are built-in?
  • Which HR processes will be automated?
  • How will information be exchanged with carriers (for employee benefits)?
  • Does it accommodate benefits carriers’ rules?
  • How can we import employee data into this system? (API, Excel spreadsheets, employee records, other databases, and paper documents)
  • What built-in security measures does it contain?
  • Does your solution feature pandemic-related tools like a vaccine management system?

FAQs on buying HCM software

Moving on, here are some of the most frequently asked questions from HR professionals when it comes to human capital management software: 

What is the best HCM system?

While some of the top vendors in HCM software are Workday, SAP SuccessFactors, ADP Workforce, and UKG, “the best” is really a matter of your business size and requirements. There are many HCM vendors, out of which there are likely 1-2 that will align perfectly with what you’re looking for. 

What is the difference between HCM, HRMS, and HRIS?

The main difference between HRIS, HRMS, and HCM is that the former two refer to a specific type of software, systems of information, as their names imply (human resource information system and human resource management systems). HCM, on the other hand, stands for human capital management. This is a set of business practices around the acquisition, management, and optimization of a business’s workforce. 

What is HCM software?

HCM software is a software tool that takes most features that you would expect out of a labor management platform, but builds it purposefully for the business practices that encompass human capital management. This software puts together widely-varying features such as workforce planning, performance reviews, and employee onboarding in a single management platform where they can all help to generate insights that drive broader business decision making.

Why do definitions of HCM, HRMS, and HRIS vary so much? 

This is a good question precisely because the definition of each term varies widely from vendor to vendor, and among HR professionals as well. That being said, the differences between each software category are all about features and use cases. Most thought leadership indicates that HRIS is the most circumscribed type of solution, focusing on core HR needs. HRMS takes it up a notch in features, while still sticking to HR use cases, and HCM is about rounding up all those features with strategic planning for the business in mind, with the workforce as the main component to analyze and optimize. 

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.

About Us

  • Our goal at SSR is to help HR and recruiting teams to find and buy the right software for their needs.
  • Our site is free to use as some vendors will pay us for web traffic.
  • SSR lists all companies we feel are top vendors - not just those who pay us - in our comprehensive directories full of the advice needed to make the right purchase decision for your HR team.

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