5 Ways Self-Service in SaaS Benefits PEOs and Their Clients

By PrismHR

As a PEO, you are inherently service-minded. Your mantra is, “We can help with that.” 

That’s a good thing. And it doesn’t change when offering a self-service alternative Human Capital Management (HCM) option. Self-service doesn’t mean no service, but it does require a very different approach. 

Self-service is an important differentiator for Professional Employer Organizations and critical to the success of an HCM rollout. It not only helps PEOs and clients reduce stress and operating costs, but also can improve margins.

Here are five reasons why. 

1. Self-Service SaaS Reduces the Customer’s Burden—and Yours. 

Self-service has become commonplace. By now, you’ve likely used automated self-service technologies, such as online forums, in-product self-help, knowledge databases and chatbots to research and resolve issues on your own instead of reaching out to a company’s customer support representatives. 

Self-service in Software as a Service (SaaS) HCM offers that same appeal. Clients can manage and customize their own software, improving their user experience while simultaneously reducing the PEO’s burden and operating costs. 

Bottom line? If you can feel comfortable with self-service, so should your clients who are ready to graduate from a PEO to an HCM option. 

2. Autonomy Is Win-Win. 

Self-service in HCM offers your clients more autonomy. Individual users can perform tasks, such as account setup, configuration and troubleshooting all on their own without the need for external support. 

But wait. Haven’t PEOs built their reputation on a service-first mentality? 

Again, self-service doesn’t have to mean less service; it’s just different. You need to be reachable should an issue arise with your customers. You don’t want them to be stuck in limbo in an endless loop of phone or chat prompts. 

Self-service in HCM also frees PEOs to focus on their PEO customers or increase revenue by offering additional services for a fee.  

3. Customers Are More Satisfied. 

Self-service done right means the client can get in touch with a PEO when needed without too much complication. Clients want to operate on their own. Self-service is often quicker and achieves the same results as waiting for someone to do the work for you. 

More software developers are moving to a self-service SaaS model because customer behavior is changing, especially as younger generations accustomed to advanced technology make up more and more of the workforce. There are more than 49.5 million millennials in the workforce, and millennials now make up the largest percentage of the workforce (larger than Gen X). On the horizon? Gen Z is primed to surpass baby boomers in the workforce soon. That’s why it’s not surprising that one software-maker found that 69% of customers prefer a self-service option, allowing them to troubleshoot on their own before reaching out to customer support. 

Think about a customer self-service portal, for example. Customers are empowered to find answers quickly on their own using chatbots, kiosks and knowledge centers without waiting for the next available agent.  

And self-service technology is evolving into more than a replacement for a help desk. Self-service technology is growing smarter and can provide support and insight to any number of areas. This includes reducing manual support workloads and repetitive tasks, such as resetting passwords and access permissions. 

These advantages save the customer a lot of time while reducing the burden on the support team. Ultimately, this means a more satisfied customer. And much less frustration for both you and your client. 

4. Self-Service Offers the Best of Both Worlds. 

As a PEO, you may still need convincing about offering a self-service HCM option. Maybe you believe that you won’t be able to provide clients the same level of service they are used to or that the margins aren’t worth your time.  

But by changing your mindset, you can have the best of both worlds. Hopefully you are now convinced that a self-service option is a good thing and what customers really want. 

And here’s the kicker. It’s entirely possible to not only see the same margins you currently do with your PEO clients, but possibly even better ones through self-service HCM.

Think of it this way: When your clients have more autonomy to find answers by themselves, you have more opportunity to earn more profit. Through self-service HCM, clients will be handling new hires, benefits administration and other services on their own. Compared to a traditional PEO service model, your costs go down and your profit margins go up. 

5. Helping Clients Help Themselves Is Good for Business.  

But why, you ask, would a client need a PEO if they could do it themselves? 

Many companies were inclined to think the same thing about onboarding solutions during the early 2000s. “If customers can do everything independently, they won’t need us anymore” was a popular idea at the time.  

Can you even imagine today how costly and time-consuming it would be to do all the onboarding for your customers? More importantly, more small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are using PEOs than ever before. Approximately 1.6 million worksite employees (WSEs) were covered by PEOs in 2008. Today, that number has almost tripled to 4.5 million. 

When an SMB graduates from a PEO model, they need somewhere to go, which is why PrismHCM makes good business sense. To keep customers, you need to change your mentality about handling all service requests. 

You’ll help your bottom line and theirs. It’s time to help yourself by letting your clients help themselves. 

Learn more about PrismHCM