Why You Need an Employee Self-Service (ESS) System

Profile Data Change with Employee Self Service

Employee self service (ESS) can be a huge difference maker for organisations. Essentially, it allows HR teams to easily enable their workforces to update their data themselves in their HR systems. In this article, we explain how to do it right.

Here's a summary of the most important points:

  • Using employee self service (ESS), employees manage data themselves. And, thanks to specific access rights, they can only change data that HR allows them to change.

  • ESS enables team members to request vacation and sick days as well as record working hours with ease.

  • In taking advantage of ESS, organisations benefit from more efficient processes, more focus for HR and higher overall data quality.

Personio offers you a fully comprehensive Employee Self Service. Find out more here.

Employee Self Service: Definition

Employee self service (ESS) relates to digitised systems that allow employees to manage their information and make changes to their own data. This is most often in regards to personal information, time tracking or managing holiday requests.

As part of ESS, employees simply edit their personnel data, working hours or absences (like sick days or holiday) themselves instead of approaching HR for every change request.

The most important part of enabling ESS is investing in the right tool. ESS is part and parcel of any great HR management system. This is also how you create access rights and ensure employees only see the data they are meant to see.

What Are the Benefits of Employee Self Service?

Employee self service can have a positive impact on the entire company and on a variety of different processes. The following are some of the top benefits of an ESS system:

Simplifying routine tasks and processes

Employees can change their data directly in and system, and all HR (or the relevant manager) has to do is approve it.

Increased transparency for employees

Employees should (safely and securely) have control over their own data. An ESS system can give them a better overview of their own personnel data.

Added focus for HR teams

Employee self service removes cumbersome processes and the time associated with them. Now, HR teams have more time to create more impact.

Improving data quality and compliance

An ESS system offers a singular, secure location for all employee data. It also ensures that, when things change, employees can make updates immediately (without waiting for HR).

Data management in the cloud

When you choose a secure system, all of your data is safely located and accessible anywhere. That's the real benefit of a user-friendly cloud-based HR software.

What Should You Look For in an Employee Self Service Software?

Here's what we recommend when it comes to choosing a great ESS solution...


The Benefit

Notifications & Reminders

Your system should proactively send notifications with important information when changes occur or requests are made (like holiday requests, new hires, contracts expiring, etc.)

Flexible Authorisation Management

Access rights are a massive part of an employee self service system. A good one will allow your HR team to set clear roles and rights to keep your information (like salaries) secure.

Intuitive Interface

The most important part of an ESS is that employees are actually able to use it. You need a system that is clear, intuitive, easy and quick to use.

How Does ESS Work Within Personio?

Personio is an all-in-one HR software solution that helps upgrade your people operations. A big piece of that is offering an employee self service feature that spans each stage of the employee lifecycle. All while being store in one centralised place.

Here's a quick rundown of what you can accomplish with our help:

  1. Define & Assign Rights - Easily determine who needs to see what, and determine who can upload or download files, or submit and approve requests.

  2. Change Data or Make Requests - Employees can log into Personio, go to their own file and make changes in only a few clicks.

  3. Approve Changes or Requests - Managers or HR are immediately notified of changes and can approve them immediately and easily.

Example: Making a Vacation Request with Personio

Steps without automation:

Steps with Personio and ESS:

The employee determines where is the best place to make a vacation request (starting by checking the policy).

Leave is requested via internal chat system (Slack, Microsoft Teams) or directly in Personio (web or mobile version).

The employee asks their manage for a certain amount of time away via email or an internal communications tool.

The request is forwarded to the manager with all relevant details.

The manager approves the request and logs it in some kind of sheet or in their own personal notes.

The relevant manage approves the request and it is automatically entered into the employee's calendar.

Managers align with HR to make note of the employee's upcoming departure.

Vacation days are automatically deducted from the employee's holiday entitlement.

HR updates their relevant sheet with all employee dates (likely via manual data entry). They then update the relevant employee's remaining vacation entitlement.

The employee is able to enquire regarding their remaining entitlement by writing a message to HR.

The employee manually reminds their manager that they will be going on vacation before their leave begins.

Make Use of Employee Self Service Today

Personio offers an HR software solution that can redefine the way you run your people processes. This is especially true when it comes to embracing employee self service as a way to streamline your processes, increase transparency and focus on more strategic work for your HR teams.

Speak with one of our HR experts today to learn more.

Streamline all your HR processes

Web Demo Personio