HR & Employee Management Articles

Top HR Apps for Your Small Business

by Karen McCandless
Published on 15 October 2015

GetRank in the cloud Q3 HR apps textWhether you are thinking about hiring a new employee, managing your talent, providing workplace training, or calculating annual leave, all of this can be automated with a HR app. When you chose to deploy a cloud-based HR app, you have the added advantages of quick and easy setup, scalability (adding more employee licenses, but also taking them away), vendor support, no extra strain on your hardware, and a predictable, subscription-based model.

Choosing the right HR app can be an arduous process and getting reliable and accurate information isn't always easy. That's where GetRank - GetApp's quarterly, independent ranking of business apps - comes into play. We use five carefully chosen and relevant data points to rank the apps. These include: the number of user reviews on GetApp, the number of integrations with other apps, the availability of an Android and iOS app, Twitter followers and Facebook fans, and security data collected by GetApp. Each data point is scored out of 20, with a total potential overall GetRank score of 100.

Here, we've rounded up the top apps overall, as well diving into to each data point to reveal how apps fare against each other, to help you better choose the right HR app for your business. This data was collected during Q3 2015 (July 1 to September 30), and the rankings will be updated on a quarterly basis to account for new data.

Overall ranking

The overall ranking is based on each app's score in the five data points combined, with equal weight given to each. The five apps below gained the highest total score.

1. BambooHR

2. FinancialForce HCM

3. Workday Human Capital Management

4. Halogen Software

5. TribeHR

Best for: Integrations

In much the same way that the different departments within your company perform better when they collaborate, any good HR app won't run in isolation, but will seamlessly integrate with other business software you use. The five apps below have the most integrations to apps listed on GetApp.

1. FinancialForce HCM - key integrations for this app include Salesforce Sales Cloud for CRM, Zoho Reports business intelligence solution, and ServiceMax field service software.

2. BambooHR integrates with RightSignature for online document signing and Performance Pro for employee performance appraisal.

3. TribeHR integrates with Salesforce Sales Cloud and Pingboard Employee Directory software.

4. Workday Human Capital Management integrates with Greenhouse recruiting optimization software and ExpertusONE cloud learning management system.

5 Namely integrates with Bonusly for employee recognition and Greenhouse recruiting optimization software.

Most popular (based on user reviews)

In the same way that you'd read reviews on Amazon before buying a product, one of the best ways to get a true sense of the value of an HR app is to hear from companies that are already using it. That's why we place emphasis on the importance of user reviews - not just the number, but also the rating. Here are the five apps that scored highest in this category, with examples of reviews left by businesses who use the HR software.

1. BambooHR

Helen May, marketing manager, says of BambooHR:

"Pros: The transition to Bamboo has been easy. It's gotten things more organized around here. The software is user-friendly and intuitive and has provided the fields we need to track our employees. The on-boarding and set-up of an employee has been the biggest advantage so far. It's something we've needed to take us from spreadsheets and "too many cooks in the kitchen" to all-in-one place.

Cons: I'm still in the initial process in using it, so I haven't discovered any dislikes yet."

2. Zenefits

Adam Dorsey, Partner at Piccirilli Dorsey, Inc, says:

"Really a pleasure to work with them. Very responsive. I'll say that again… THEY ARE VERY RESPONSIVE. That was the biggest plus for me as a business owner."

3. CakeHR

Paul Slater, co-founder and CEO at Fit Gurus, says:

"I've used Cake HR in a former company and it was our first choice for Fit Gurus. Literally got setup in a few minutes and our team were submitting their holiday requests in no time. Super simple stuff and gives us exactly what we need to stay organised."

4. Cezanne OnDemand

Sam, an HR consultant, says:

"Pros: It is easy to use and offers a lot of functionality. The user guides are easy to follow when setting up Cezanne HR. It is a stable system and doesn't crash and it is easy to navigate and use.

Cons: Batch uploading existing data into Cezanne can take a couple of attempts."

5 TribeHR

Rebecca Graham, a human resources manager, says:

"TribeHR has done a great job of incorporating what HR, managers and employees need to do their jobs effectively. It is quick, smart and simple. It has everything you need as a manager without having to ask HR for help in getting the info. It really puts the information in the employee's and manager's hands eliminating administrative support often required by HR. It is also easy to navigate making for a great user experience."

Biggest media presence (based on social media rank)

1. Oracle Taleo Business Edition: With nearly 400,000 followers on Twitter (as of October 2015), this HR app may not rival Justin Bieber in the popularity stakes, but it's the biggest audience for its field. Examples of Oracle Tweets include

. @Oracle's @Axcampbe says encouraging health in the workplace is good for business #SimplyTalent

2. Sage HRMS: While there is no dedicated Twitter account for this app, you can follow @sagesupport for news and updates. You can also connect via Sage's main Facebook page.

3. PeopleFluent boasts nearly 30,000 Twitter followers, and has Tweets such as

Is your talent management strategy ready for #millennials? Find out for yourself with our new research: #hr

4. ADP Total Source has a very active Twitter (more than 30,000) and Facebook (around 10,000) audience, and can be found sharing posts on topics such as diversity in the workplace, motivational tips, and the Affordable Care Act. 4 Halogen Software is also strong on both Twitter and Facebook, with Tweets such as this one:

Check out these tips to help #HR, managers & employees make it through performance review season with flying colors. - Halogen Software (@HalogenSoftware) October 14, 2015

4. SuccessFactors has around 18,000 Facebook fans and more than 32,000 Twitter followers. The company shares a variety of content to its social media channels, including attracting top talent, the importance of company culture, and learning in the workplace.

4. Zoho People shares its social media accounts with the rest of the Zoho product family, with more than 20,000 Twitter followers and 45,000 Facebook fans.


With the rise of the always-on office, you and your employees need HR software that has a strong mobile app so you can work from anywhere and not be chained to your desk. Maybe you want to approve time off on your morning commute, or review applications when you're in a hotel room, or catch up on some training on the go. All of these require a mobile app - for both Android and iOS.

Here is our list of the HR apps with best mobile presence, and if you're looking on more information on mobile apps to manage your business, check out our sister site Appstorm.

1. ADP Total Source's mobile app not only allows you to manage traditional HR functions such as time tracking and leave approval, but it also includes payroll functionality and the ability to view and pay tax statements.

1. Workday's app for iOS and Android incorporates not only HR but also financial management features. This includes the ability to view and approve time off requests, access org charts, and view payslips.

3. BambooHR's mobile app is useful for both employees - as it allows them to ask for time off directly from the app - and managers - as they can approve directly from their Android or iOS device. You can also access the entire company directly from your phone.

3. Humanity's mobile app for iOS and Android allows employees to clock in and out and request leave, as well as access the company director and calendar, and see colleagues' schedules.

3. While Oracle Taleo Business Edition doesn't have its own app, some functionality is available through Oracle Tap for Android and iOS, allowing you to more efficiently manage the recruitment process on the go.

3. SuccessFactors for Android and iOS boasts a plethora of interesting HR features, including the ability to sign up for courses, view and approve tasks relating to recruitment and performance management, and call, text or email colleagues directly from the app.

3. With Zoho People for Android and iOS, you can track time spent on projects, contact people from within the app, and check in and out as you enter and leave the office.


It seems like barely a week passes without news of another data breach, and we recognize the importance of keeping data safe within your HR app. That's why we included security as one of the metrics within GetRank. The top five app ranking is taken from information that is based on a security survey developed by GetApp in collaboration with Microsoft, and modeled on the Cloud Security Alliance self-assessment form.

1. Halogen Software

2. FinancialForce HCM

2. Humanity

2. WebHR

5. CakeHR

Which HR app do you use?

If you have a favorite HR app, let us know in the comments below. If you'd like to find out more about the latest trends in this area, as well as see the results in full, check out the GetRank report for HR. There are separate reports for apps in other categories within human resources, including applicant tracking, employee scheduling, and learning management systems. You can also find out more information about exactly how we calculate the scores for each data point.


Apps mentioned in this article