Consortium releases comprehensive new version of HR-XML

Standard inches closer to interoperability with other human resource applications

The third version of a set of Extensible Markup Language-based schemas for human resources tasks has been released this week by the HR-XML Consortium. This new version, HR-XML 3.0, is a complete rewrite and expansion of earlier versions.

“It took more than 40 member companies working together for nearly 18 months to bring this new release to fruition,” Mark Cates, an executive board member of the HR-XML Consortium, said in a statement. “This is not merely an update to our prior releases. It’s a new version that allows us to clean up a lot of issues and remove inconsistencies in data formats that formed over the years. It is a real step forward for the entire industry.”

HR-XML was designed to facilitate the exchange of data across different HR applications. It includes schemas that cover every major HR transaction, according to the consortium.

“In the ecosystem of ‘human resources’ there is never just one application,” said Romuald Restout, president of the HR-XML Consortium, in a statement. “From an end-user perspective, [using HR-XML gives HR teams] the flexibility to choose across multiple vendors, focusing on ‘best of breed’ applications as opposed to worrying about interoperability.”

The new version expands the ways in which the schemas can interoperate with other enterprise-level markup schemes. For instance, this is the first version to be aligned with the United Nations Centre for Trade Facilitation and Electronic Business' Core Components, a markup schema for exchanging e-business messages, rendered in the Electronic Business using Extensible Markup Language, known as ebXML. 

Corporate members of the HR-XML Consortium include ADP, Hewlett-Packard, Lawson Software, Microsoft, Oracle and SAP.

About the Author

Joab Jackson is the senior technology editor for Government Computer News.

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