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Infor Lawson HR and Payroll Software Review


Lawson HCM Strengths and Weaknesses

Competitive positioning in the Human Capital Management and HR software industry is highlighted with the following strengths and weaknesses:

Lawson HCM Strengths

  • Lawson's attention to industry-specific feature sets, business processes, relevant reports and compliance requirements has created industry specific software and a vertical solution channel that is deep in domain knowledge and best-in-class.
  • Thanks in part to the detailed work Lawson has conducted in industry verticals, mobile functionality is impressive and well-suited to those organizations needing location-agnostic HR software delivery.
  • Lawson's software functionality makes the solution particularly well-suited to compliance-driven organizations such as government and healthcare—both verticals that the company excels in.
  • Business Intelligence functionality is robust and generally on par with (and in some aspects surpasses) the feature sets available from similarly-situated vendors such as Oracle, SAP, and Workday. However, as referenced in the following section on weaknesses, advanced analytic capabilities, such as data mining and predictive modeling, appear to absent from the solution.
  • Lawson's acquisition by Infor puts the company in the hands of executives that embrace the industry's trend toward Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) applications—a stark contrast to Lawson's former CEO Harry Debes who was directly opposed to that deployment model and even commented publicly that the SaaS market would collapse by 2010.
  • While far from best-in-class, the Lawson HCM software does have Recruiting and Learning capabilities, a distinct difference from the current offerings from Oracle and Workday.
  • Lawson is largely built using the .NET framework and Windows Presentation Foundation; which offers users the advantage of a native Microsoft Windows application—a significant benefit to teams familiar and satisfied with the MS user experience (UX).

Lawson HCM Weaknesses

  • Comprehensive integrated payroll software functionality is limited to the U.S. and Canada.
  • The Lawson User Interface (UI) is seriously lacking in terms of adopting the consumerization of IT trend and benefits, particularly as compared with similarly-situated HR software products.
  • While potentially changing, little Research and Development (R&D) has existed for Infor's HCM product line, with the bulk of innovation coming in the form of HR software acquisitions—a fact that has led to the company's possession and ensuing "technical debt" for 7+ HR-related solutions.
  • Lawson's database architecture is limited to single-tenant delivery, which, as IDC analysis supports, "may pose a challenge to release strategy and vendor achievement of economies of scale". Without a multi-tenant architecture, provisioning upgrades and new versions is extremely cumbersome and thereby slows the pace of innovation as compared to native SaaS applications.
  • Advanced human capital analytics capabilities fall behind similarly-positioned HR software competitors.
  • Prior missteps have put the company far behind most HR software vendors in their release of a viable Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) offering. Failing to address this major market movement will clearly erode Lawson's competitiveness in the HCM software industry.

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