When it comes to managing your staff, having the right HR tools available is absolutely essential. HR software enables you to track a wide range of metrics across your business, allowing you to manage staff effectively and ensure maximum productivity and profitability.

The difficult part is choosing your HR software, especially when it comes to deciding whether to use an online solution, or purchase a package to use in-house. Of course, both sides have their advantages and disadvantages, so it’s all about selecting the one that works best for your business.

Cost Comparison
The price of your chosen software package is certainly an important consideration. One of the key reasons businesses utilise HR software is to keep costs down. In general, online HR software is likely to require less initial investment. This is a huge advantage, especially to smaller businesses, as it provides them with immediate functionality without having to find large sums up-front.

Financing integrated in-house HR software is slowly becoming easier, and there are some lower-priced options available. If you really feel that you need to have in-house software, then there are ways to make it more cost effective.

For most business, it’s best to consider the ROI; if you will make use of the additional functions with an integrated system, then it might be worth the extra outlay. If you need a less advanced package then there’s no need to spend the extra money.

One of the biggest benefits of online software is having 24/7 access to your HR package. It means that no matter where your staff might be, or what time it is, all your HR functions are available to you. Of course, the one problem you might have is a lack of internet access. Having an in-house system means that even without web access you can still meet the needs of both your staff and your business. However, given how dependent most businesses are on the internet, it’s unlikely that your main concern will be the accessibility of your HR software when facing a day working offline.

Ease of Use and Integration
It’s always going to be easier initially to use a ready-to-use online package, as you don’t have to worry about installation etc. So, if you’re looking for something to get you started immediately, purchasing online HR software can be a good option.


However, an in-house system will often be tailored to the needs of your business, be fully integrated with your IT systems, and possibly even your intranet. Many businesses choose to link their HR information with in-house email accounts and the like.


Although these features aren’t always available with more basic and generic online software, more and more online systems are offering these advances options, with much better levels of integration and customisation.

Ease of upgrading
There are some major benefits to using a remote system. For example, should you need to upgrade your HR software, then doing so with on online provider will be simpler as all changes can be implemented remotely. This means that your software will always be up to date and will adhere to current legal guidelines. That having been said, an integrated system could receive some updates in much the same way.

Overall, which solution is best is very much dependant on your HR requirements and the needs of your business. If you don’t require the most advanced functionality in your HR software, then an online solution could be ideal for your needs. It’s cheaper, easier to upgrade, and offers 24 hour access. In addition, it’s easy to add extra options and features to at a later date.

However, if your business needs are more complex, then an in-house HR system could be the answer. A tailored packaged that is integrated with your other IT systems will be more expensive, but may offer you more ways to monitor your staff and HR issues.