Human resources (HR) software and management system WebHR (whose base price begins at $3 per employee and offers a free plan for up to five users) is the opposite of HR software vendors that follow the mantra of “less is more.” For WebHR, more is more. Unlike vendors whose HR software goes deep into a handful of functions, WebHR’s cloud-based HR software touches on practically every aspect of personnel management or, as the company advertises, from “hire to retire.” Even still, WebHR did not win our Editors’ Choice award in our HR software and management system roundup, which is a recognition that went to BambooHR.
Do you need to do tasks relating to personnel management such as posting a job opening, running payroll, doing performance reviews, rewarding someone for a job well done, or disciplining someone else for showing up late too often? Do you need to schedule shifts, survey employees, or analyze turnover? You can do so with WebHR because it does all this and more. WebHR competes with Zenefits Z2 by offering a free service but—and it’s a big but—only for companies with up to five people. What you get for free is a stripped-down version that’s missing many of the bells and whistles just described. The software offers modular-based pricing for plans larger than five people. As mentioned, its base price starts at $3 per employee per month but it goes as low as $1 per employee per month. As you add modules, the price increases. Performance management is $1 extra per employee, eSignatures are $0.10 extra per employee, and forms are $0.20 extra per employee, to name a few modules.
U.S. companies with employees or locations overseas may appreciate WebHR’s international roots. The software’s command structure can be programmed to appear in 30 languages and payroll can be calculated in dozens of currencies. Templates for filling out employee files include fields for information that US employers typically don’t—or by law can’t—ask employees but that is common for employers outside the US to collect (such as an employee’s parents’ names). The software’s main functions include a smattering of British English terms such as “station” for location and “organogram” for organization chart, which US users may find annoying (at least I did).
Onboarding New Employees
WebHR’s main screen is called My Dashboard. System administrators can see a spare but well-organized main navigation bar that consists of a row of icons running across the top of the page which represents its main functions. These icons include Calendar, Discussions, Employee Directory, Employees, Files, Help, Home, Inbox, Notifications, Organization, Payroll, Recruiting, Reports, Timesheet, and Trainings. Hovering the cursor over an icon opens a drop-down menu of options available from within that function. Within any of the main functions, icons for each subfunction appear in a vertical column on the left-hand side.
Recruiting is a plain vanilla applicant tracking system (ATS) with options for creating a job posting, scheduling interviews, rating candidates, and a Job Portal that generates HTML code to add job openings to a company’s existing Careers page. The Job Portal integrates with Indeed.com, which means any job opening a company posts on its own career page is automatically transmitted to the popular job website. It’s a handy feature that’s part of some standalone ATSes but not always included in the ATS within other HR software suites.
Once a new hire signs on, adding them to the employee database is pretty straightforward. From the Employees icon, I chose “Employees Joining” and used the “Add Employee Joining” button at the bottom of the page to pull up a form. On this form I added the new person’s contact information, company email address, position, department, manager, and office location. There are spots for personal information such as date of birth, gender, and hire date as well as for optional information such as driver’s license and passport number. If you’re switching to WebHR from a different system, then it’s possible to upload personnel data from Microsoft Excel files but not if you’re using the free version.
Once I entered the new hire’s information, I used My Dashboard > Employees Directory or Reports > Employees List to see it listed along with that of all other employees. Clicking the new hire’s name brought up a personnel page with their information plus their calendar and personal to-do list. As a system admin, I could write a recommendation and post a Hard Worker or Creative badge that would show up on their file.
Payroll and Performance Reviews
WebHR’s Employees function includes a performance management (PM) module. Unlike vendors such as SAP SuccessFactors that build an extensive library of review templates into their performance review module, WebHR requires that you either upload existing review forms or create them from scratch by using a form generator. That’s par for the course for most modules in the platform, which can make some small business owners think twice about using the software. If you don’t already have forms you can copy and paste into the system, then it will take a fair amount of time to build them from scratch. Additionally, storing and routing such customer-created documents seems to be most of what WebHR offers in the way of PM. If you’re looking for automated feedback or review workflows, goal tracking, or skills management, then you’ll either need to keep looking or create these features yourself in WebHR by using a combination of documents and self-defined HR metrics with which to populate your dashboards.
Reports cover perfunctory topics such as turnover and total payroll, but it’s easy to create and generate graphics that can be printed or exported as Microsoft Excel or other file formats, which simplifies creating presentations.
WebHR also has a few features I didn’t see in many other HR software solutions, including settings to restrict access to certain IP addresses (which prevents employees from logging on from outside of work if that’s not allowed). It also has a System Logs feature that captures everything anyone does in the software, a digital archive that could prove useful in the event of an employee dispute. The software also can be integrated with biometric devices such as fingerprint scanners that some companies use instead of traditional timecards for employees to clock in and out of work.
WebHR strives to be a one-stop-shop for HR software for small businesses, with an array of people management functions that’s a mile wide but an inch deep. Small companies and startups without a big headcount or HR budget will appreciate the no-frills free version and can graduate to more feature-rich paid plans from there.