There’s a reason we worry about Robots taking over our jobs. There are lots of things machines and software are so darn good at. Automation has made HCM processes – from scanning through resumes, to tracking performance over time, to issuing paychecks – faster, easier and more accurate. Efficiency is good, and we need automation. But it’s no longer enough.

Organizations are catching on to the fact that their human capital technologies need to operate on two levels. They need to be powerful transaction engines for administrative users. And they need to deliver engaging experiences for employees at every level of the organization. These are very different views of the role of technology, and we’re seeing an explosion of what we have begun calling Experience Technology.

This Experience Technology comes in many flavors and we highlighted several of them with value propositions around communications, engagement, feedback and measurement, including BetterWorks, Glint, GuideSpark and Hyphen, coverage of HR Tech last fall. Traditional players like Ceridian and its spin-off Lifeworks are looking at delivering wellness, perks and engagement. Kronos has partnered with Google to rethink employee experience. And just this week Navera announced its foray into the Experience Technology space as well, focusing on not only employee communications, but usage feedback for HR practitioners to help them evolve policies and programs.

There is a TON packed into this “niche” space in the HCM Technology Landscape, ranging from engagement benchmarking to wellness programs, benefits selection, performance feedback, employee analytics and more. Every company mentioned above has a unique position on how they can deliver on the promise of Experience Technology. So I am pleased to announce that this fall will be publishing our Technology Index Report on Communication and Engagement solutions, to help practitioners understand the space, and distinguish among the differentiators of all of these unique players and what they bring to the table. This is no apples to apples, or even apples to pears technology space, and we endeavor to sort through and help organizations ask the right questions so they can deliver the right employee experience. I’m excited to delve more deeply into this space, and look forward to taking you along for the ride.