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Introduction to Michael Specht

By / April 8, 2013 / / 0 Comments

michael_spechtThis post is really an introduction to me, Michael Specht, the new Senior Advisor here at Navigo Research.

What will I do? The role has 3 main areas of focus:

  1. Produce analysis and research into the technology used to support HR/Payroll
  2. Provide consulting and advisory services to Navigo Research customers
  3. Promote and build the Navigo Research brand

The first two areas is building on the fabulous foundation of the previous Australian HR Tech Reports and to develop this further with additional research and market intelligence.  I will also be extending the existing processes and practices to help organisations undertake technology reviews and systems selection process.  My role will require me to spend significant time with both buyers and sellers of HR Technology in Australia to understand the vendor landscape and what organisations really want from their HR Tech investments.

The third part of my role will involve me engaging with many different people across the HR Technology landscape here in Australia. The first and most important group will be you the readers of this blog (subscribe now). You will also find me hanging out on LinkedIn, Twitter, at conferences, user groups and anywhere HR Technology is discussed.

My Background

If you are unfamiliar with who I am here is a quick overview.

I have been working in the technology industry for over 20 years specialising in the impact that technology has on HR and Payroll. This has allowed me to work with organisations of all sizes, industries and stages of growth. Over the years I have completed many different project including; enterprise system projects (SAP, Kronos etc), eRecruitment (from the time when we used fax and OCR technology), building job boards, run training courses on social recruiting, created HR conferences, traditional payroll system implementations and even built an IT data centre. During this time my roles have ranged from being an analyst, change manager, project manager, system architect, software developer – acting as vendor, a customer and everything in between.

In more recent years I have been working with HR and Payroll departments to ensure that their existing or future investments in technology to delivery value to their operations and most importantly the broader organisation.

The Internet

I have spent a fair bit of time leveraging the Internet to assist HR – starting before most people knew what it was.

My first exposure to what we now call the web was in 1994 using  NCSA Mosaic to browse this amazing world of information created in the new “language” called HTML. Back then the web was just for static content delivery and all new HR/Payroll applications were being delivered using a “thick” client/server model.

The technology around the Internet was changing rapidly and very soon technology allowed databases to be connected to these HTML pages to delivery dynamic content to users of the internet. This was the start of the application revolution we see today. Some of my early projects using the web were setting up one of the first corporate job boards in Asia, and in 1998 implemented a web based employee self service and knowledge management portal across Asia both.

Today, delivering an application NOT via an web browser just seems outdated and wrong, a bit like deploying a green screen terminal based application during the mid-1990’s when the leading organisations were implementing highly functional “thick” client/server applications.

The social enterprise

I have been a user of social media for a long time . Writing one of Australia’s oldest blogs, started 23 June 2004, focusing on HR, recruitment and technology (http://specht.com.au), although most blogging from now will be here. I have also been a long time Twitter user starting 2o November 2006, you can follow my personal Twitter account at mspecht.  Back then Twitter was plagued by system outages but a small (10,000’s) of users kept supporting the company to watch it grow and morph into the global powerhouse it is today.

Very early on I started to look at how these social tools could influence the internal organisation, at that time called Enterprise 2.0. A key area, that I am still passionate about today, is how using these social tools inside an organisation can improve the bottom line and employee engagement, I have spoken several times about this and it is good to see vendors now adopting these tools as part of their core solution offerings.

I look forward to working with existing Navigo Research customer and developing relationships with new customers.