The Difference Between Strategic and Operational HR Management

Supriya Bajaj

Supriya Bajaj

Senior editor

Parul Saxena

Chief editor

Last updated: May 31, 2021

“Human resources isn’t a thing that we do. It is the thing that runs our business.” – Steve Wynn, CEO Wynn Resorts Limited.

People are a valuable asset! To be a good leader, you don’t need to do everything yourself. The key to success lies in building a capable workforce that feels valued and appreciated enough to walk the extra mile!

Looking for HR Software? Check out SoftwareSuggest’s list of the best hr software solutions.

Human resources is a challenging organizational function to manage. Between recruitment, onboarding, performance management, training, and salary administration, there are tons of vital tasks involved.

That’s why HR software is a raging trend these days.

But it’s not possible to invest in an automated HR management system without analyzing your core business HR strategy.

Confused? Not sure about your approach towards human resource management?

Don’t worry. Read on to know more about strategic and operational HR management to get the best platform for your organization.

Strategic Vs. Operational HR Management

78% of businesses say that employee well-being is a critical part of their business objectives!

Want to lead your market niche? You simply can’t afford to ignore formulating a robust HR strategy!

Your strategic HR services can play a crucial role in business success. However, many times the top management and decision-makers cannot align human resource goals with overall corporate objectives for various reasons. Let’s have a look at strategic and operational HR management to gain a better understanding of how to utilize the workforce to the optimum capacity.

Strategic HR Management

Ever thought of your organization as a separate ecosystem in itself and viewed it as a whole?

That’s what strategic HR management is all about!

Implementing a well-structured human resource information system (HRIS) involves ensuring that your organization’s human resource objectives meet the long-term business requirements. It draws a connection between short-term HR goals for recruitment, performance appraisal, onboarding, and salary administration to overall strategic objectives.

Can strategic HR management drive change?

Well, yes! Implementing strategic HR planning can transform your organization and result in a happier and healthier workforce. Here are some instant advantages:

  • Enables human resources to act as a strategic partner to drive flexibility and innovation in routine tasks.
  • Facilitates leaders to take a tactical approach towards recruitment and employee development to retain the best talent.
  • Develops an employee-centric culture that results in an engaged and motivated workforce.

Now that we have a fair idea about strategic HR management – the latest buzzing trend let’s move towards the other side of the coin – operational HR management.

Operational HR Management

The main difference between strategic and operational management is of immediate outlook! While strategic HR management looks at the long-term company vision, operational HR management is more transactional.

One of the most popular staffing management techniques, operational HR, is about performing visible day-to-day tasks critical to meeting employee requirements. Here, human resource managers are viewed as top-of-the-pyramid administrators who take charge of activities such as hiring, training, compensation management, and compliance.

Wondering if operational HR is effective?

A traditional and structured approach, operational HR management plays a vital role in ensuring that organizations adhere to labor laws and meet mandatory compliance requirements. Some of its key benefits include:

  • Streamlines HR processes to focus on employee relations, staffing, succession planning, and training needs.
  • Ensures operation HR meetings between managers and employees to provide instant feedback to improve performance parameters.
  • Improves the functionality of on-ground HR operations by handling tasks such as performance management, coaching, onboarding, payroll, and benefits administration.

What To Look For While Investing In HR Software?

The global HR market is poised to become a $38.17 billion industry by 2027.

HR software is the need of the hour! With tons of cloud-based HR systems that focus on analytics, high-level functionality, and reporting tools, it is the key to operational efficiency.

What does your organization get?

Efficiency, a better customer experience, and a motivated employee base! Sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it?

However, with tons of HR software available in the market, it is often a daunting task to choose the right one.

features of hr software


Here are some crucial aspects to consider while purchasing an HR system for your organization:

1. Features

If there is one thing that you can’t compromise on while choosing a viable HR software, it is functionality. Ensure that your HR system has state-of-the-art features that encompass payroll, applicant tracking, rewards, tax compliance, attendance, reporting, and leave management. This will reduce manual work and help your organization implement automated workflows to drive productivity.

2. Customization

There is no point in choosing generic HR software as it may not meet your exact requirements. Most credible service vendors provide customizable systems that can be mapped with your existing HR practices. Ensure that your HR software can integrate with other important business applications to streamline the flow of information without any hassles!

3. Scalability

The HR needs and growth of your organization will change with time! Ensure that you invest in scalable HR software that will cater to business expansion or growth. Most modern service providers allow you to select specific modules based on your business model. Hence, you end up paying for what you need and can add extra features anytime if required!

4. Data Security

The safety of HR data is a prime concern for all kinds of organizations. Invest in an HR system with stringent security features such as password protection, multi-layer access control, and data encryption. Top-of-the-line security tools will ensure that no unauthorized personnel can access sensitive company information for personal gain or manipulation.

5. Deployment

It is vital to make an informed decision about choosing on-premise or cloud-based HR software. If your organization has the physical infrastructure and IT-trained personnel, you may benefit from an on-premise HR system. In recent times, cloud-based HR software is preferred as the vendor handles all implementation and maintenance issues. With cloud HR software, you get a secure, affordable, and flexible solution; all rolled into one product!

6. User Training

Your service provider needs to help your organization transition into the new HR system smoothly. Make sure to invest with a reliable partner that provides excellent after-sales support and trains your team to use the latest HR software efficiently. A seamless user experience will increase the chances of quick adoption and give you an instant return on investment!

Top 6 HR Management Software

Are you looking out for the best HR software in the market? If yes, check out our curated list of the top 5 HR systems that can help your organization boost results:

1. Keka

Keka logoA all-inclusive HR platform, Keka has innovative features that help both management and core administrators. A cloud-based system, Keka streamlines approval workflows, facilitates customized report generation, and consolidates employee data in a central repository.



  • 360-degree feedback
  • Applicant tracking
  • Payroll management 
  • Employee self-service
  • Leave and attendance management
  • Mobile support
  • Performance management

2. Zimyo

ZimyoA comprehensive HR automation system, Zimyo is customizable and has a wide array of features to attract, retain, and develop the workforce of any organization. An intuitive interface, excellent customer service, and a real-time dashboard make Zimyo a must-have business asset. 


  • HR and payroll
  • Employee self-service management 
  • 360-degree feedback 
  • Document management 
  • Compensation management 
  • Onboarding 

3. greytHR

greytHR logoA suite of cloud-based HR solutions, greytHR is ideal for small and medium-sized enterprises looking to boost HR capabilities. A user-friendly and intuitive interface makes it easy to navigate, and it uses the right technology to automate core HR functions to enhance operational efficiency.



  • Shift scheduling
  • Time and attendance capabilities
  • Expense management
  • Benefits administration
  • Document management
  • Statutory compliances
  • Employee lifecycle management

4. Pocket HRMS

Pocket HRMS logoA revolutionary payroll and HR software, Pocket HRMS is an end-to-end solution. It manages all critical processes and has innovative HR analytic capabilities to increase performance by constant monitoring and providing real-time feedback.



  • Attendance management
  • Email integration
  • Employee self-service portal
  • Performance management
  • Tax compliance
  • Mobile support
  • Recruitment management

5. Wallet HR

Wallet HR logoA complete human capital management system, Wallet HR is a suite of tools that can be implemented in any industry – retail, service, hospitality, or manufacturing. It automates repetitive HR functions to save time and has an intuitive interface that ensures a seamless user experience.



  • Employee profile management
  • Self-service portal
  • Benefits administration
  • Payroll management
  • Time and attendance management
  • Statutory compliances

6. HROne- HRMS

HROne HRMS logoA comprehensive human resource management software, HROne is widely used worldwide to streamline routine HR processes. With advanced functionalities and in-built reporting tools, HROne is a significant investment that can deliver actionable insights for better decision making.



  • Attendance and leave management
  • Statutory compliance
  • Employee lifecycle management
  • Payroll management
  • Document management
  • Mobile support

Wrapping Up

Strategic HR services are important for all kinds of organizations. It is imperative to invest in your human resource capabilities to gain a credible brand image and get noticed in the market.

Scan the market, assess your unique business requirements and invest in the best HR software to witness a radical transformation of all key performance indicators. Getting the right HR platform is sure to catapult your organization to the zenith of business success and gain an instant competitive edge!

Supriya Bajaj
Supriya is a senior content writer with vast experience in writing about technology for various industries. Interactive, synergetic, and influential content is what she believes can make a positive difference in our daily lives!

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