Most of us know general technology and Internet acronyms – LOL, OMG, BRB, etc. What about HR technology acronyms? HR technology acronyms can be very confusing and are often used interchangeably. A solid understanding of these terms is necessary when evaluating software solutions for your organization. Here we list some of the most important HR technology acronyms along with their meanings.

HR Technology Acronyms

HRMS (Human Resources Management System)

This is the easiest one to learn – the Human Resources Management System. This is a term that describes a lot of different things. It means anything from a fairly simple spreadsheet replacement database up to a fully-integrated system. A modern HRMS can potentially oversee and pull together every kind of HR-related software application.

HRIS (Human Resources Information System)

What’s the difference between an HRMS and a Human Resources Information System? The two acronyms are often used interchangeably but they’re not quite the same. The main difference lies in the data that’s stored. An HRIS holds basic static information (addresses, social security numbers, payroll info, etc.). An HRMS holds more dynamic data such as PTO days, performance management reviews, etc.

RFP (Request for Proposal)

Whatever system you choose, an HRIS or HRMS, you will have to put together an RFP or Request for Proposal. This document includes all the technical and functional requirements for the system and is used as part of the procurement procedure to ensure that all potential suppliers and/or vendors are working from the same specification.

ATS (Applicant Tracking System)

The Applicant Tracking System is the automated process that empowers recruiters with functionality in every step of the recruiting process, from sourcing to hiring candidates. Features of an ATS can include individual applicant tracking, resume ranking, pre-screening questions, customized fields and forms, employment background and drug screening.

LMS (Learning Management System)

An LMS is a software application or web-based technology used for documenting, tracking, reporting and the delivery of electronic learning education courses or training. An LMS is used to plan, implement and assess the learning and training process. This technology provides a company with a manageable and trackable way to deliver content, assess performance and monitor participation in training.

HCA (Human Capital Analytics)

Drawing on Human Capital Management, the fancier name for HR, HCA or Human Capital Analytics refers to those database functions that go beyond simple reporting and into the world of combining different sets of data to uncover new and strategically valuable insights.

ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning)

ERP software is used to manage the business. It integrates all facets of an operation, including product planning, development, manufacturing processes, human resources, financials and sales, and marketing.

Today’s ERP solutions are designed to help you to improve the operational efficiency of business resources. Businesses use ERP systems to integrate all its business processes into a single system to efficiently and effectively manage business goals.

SaaS (Software as a Service)

Software as a Service is where customers access software over the Internet. In SaaS, a service provider hosts the application at its data center and a customer accesses it via a standard Web browser. In other words, the cloud.

The next big HR and workplace technology acronym you should start to become familiar with is probably a new one to most…: CALO, which stands for Cognitive Assistant that Learns and Organizes

So what does this mean? CALO stands for Cognitive Assistant that Learns and Organizes and refers to an artificial intelligence and robotics project instigated by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency which may one day completely free the HR department from its administrative burden. The project goal was to create an artificial personal assistant; something that “organizes and prioritizes information, mediates human communication, resource allocation, task management decisions, and scheduling and prioritizing.”  A tool or technology that would actually help with organizing and prioritizing information and making decisions?  Your employees would use that tool every single day! And if it worked, it would actually help them in their jobs. Who knows when CALO tools will enter the workplace… but we’re sure that there are people already working on how to make these new workplace technologies happen.