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With so many different open source HR software solutions available, figuring out which is right for you is tough. You know you want to provide a customizable and cost-effective solution for managing human resources tasks but need to figure out which tool is best. In this post, I'll help make your choice easy, sharing my personal experiences using dozens of different open source HR tools with teams of all sizes—including my picks for the best open source HR software overall.

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The 10 Best Open Source HR Software Comparison Chart

This comparison chart summarizes pricing details for my top open source HR software selections to help you find the best software for your budget and business needs.

Tools Price
Odoo Employees From $31/user/month
OrangeHRM From $6/user/month
Bitrix24 From $49/month (5 users)
WP ERP No price details
Open HRMS From $499/month (support package)
MintHCM From $4/user/month
IceHrm Open Source Edition From $0.90/user/month
WaypointHR Free to use
SimpleHRM Free to use
Sentrifugo Free to use
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Open Source HR Software Reviews

Here’s a brief description of each of the 10 best open source HR software solutions to showcase each tool’s best use case, some noteworthy features, and screenshots to give a snapshot of the interface. Keep reading to find additional bonus picks at the bottom of the list.

Best for ease of use

  • Free to use one app only
  • From $31/user/month
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Rating: 4/5

Odoo is a full suite of open-source business applications. Odoo HR is a customizable app designed to help human resources with hiring, workforce management, expense management, appraisal management, and other human resource needs.

You can take advantage of the features offered in the Recruitment, Employees, Time Off, and Appraisal modules to create a fully-fledged, integrated HR system. The software is designed for ease of use, too.

Odoo costs from $31/user/month for all their apps. They also offer a 15-day free trial.

Best personnel information management

  • 30-day free trial + free plan available
  • From $6/user/month
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Rating: 4.1/5

OrangeHRM is a scalable HRM solution designed to manage the whole employment life cycle, from employee onboarding to termination. Features include time and attendance, candidate recruiting, performance reviews, absence management, and benefits administration. The software can be deployed on-premise or hosted in the cloud.

The user interface is intuitive and easy to follow so that HR managers can get things done faster. In addition, the admin features give a complete 360-degree view of people in the organization, facilitating better strategic decisions.

Employees can take advantage of their own portal and login, allowing them to track benefits and compensation, access training documentation, and view company org charts.

OrangeHRM costs from $6/user/month.

Best for small businesses

  • Free plan available
  • From $49/month (5 users)
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Rating: 4.1/5

Bitrix 24 offers a free GR system that includes Intranet, HRIS, workflow, time management, and an employee self-service portal. More than 30 HR tools are included, ranging from employee directories and organization charts to leave requests and absence calendars. Bitrix 24 is available as both cloud-based or on-premise software.

Despite being open-source, the software has the look and feel of professional paid software. It can be set up without the need for specialist IT help. Employees will find the self-service option to be simple to use, too. Bitrix 24 is ideal for startups or smaller businesses.

Bitrix 24 offers a free plan for unlimited storage with up to 5GB of storage.

Best Wordpress-based HR software

  • Free software
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Rating: 4.7/5

WRP ERP is a versatile open-source HR software that offers many functionalities to meet your company’s needs. It works best if your company uses a WordPress-based system. On top of core HR modules, you can add other modules that you need like employee recruitment, inventory, asset management, and payroll. You can also use WRP ERP to help boost your marketing and promotions efforts through its email marketing module. It also has a workflow management module to help you design workflows to help you and your employees optimize existing processes to make them more efficient.

If your company needs an open-source business software suite, you might want to try WP ERP because it has a wide variety of core modules you can use to manage your business, including HR, CRM, and Accounting modules. Being an open-source software means you have free rein to customize the software if you have specific business needs you want to address. It is also free, so you don’t have to worry about a monthly fee just to use the software. With the help of WP ERP, you can take care of employee needs like leave management and compensations and benefits in a centralized system.

WRP ERP is free software.

Best for tracking KPIs

  • Free to use
  • From $499/month (support package)

This open-source HR management software offers a wide range of features. These include an applicant tracking system, a centralized employee database, and HR processes administration.

The software offers transparent appraisal strategies for employees to increase engagement. The attendance management feature tracks leave and attendance in real-time.

The software is designed to be visually appealing and easy to use. Managers can quickly bring up a view of the core KPIs to stay on top of the most important metrics.

Open HRMS costs from $499/user/month. There is no free version.

Best for a holistic approach to HCM

  • From $4/user/month

MintHCM is a human capital management (HCM) system that grew out of CRM technology. This unique approach to development has created a unique approach to HR management. Yet due to the open-source nature of the system, there are no limitations on what is possible.

The suite encompasses 16 different HCM-related features. These include recruitment, onboarding, time management, analytics, and employee performance management. Together they offer a coherent, holistic approach to managing people.

Mint HCM is free for 1-10 employees. For larger organizations, a premium version is offered from $4/user/month.

Best internal job portal

  • 45 days free trial
  • From $0.90/user/month

IceHrm is a human resource management system that can be deployed on-premise or hosted in the cloud. It covers all primary HR needs, including leave management, time management, and managing employee data. Other features include timesheets, attendance administration, and travel management.

This application also provides you with an internal job portal. You can post ads directly to job sites and social media. Using the built-in features, it's also possible to create job ads that will get attention.

IceHrm costs from $0.90/user/month. A 45-day trial is available.

Best for compensation management

  • Free to use

WaypointHR is an open-source human resource management system. A simple 5-step wizard makes it easy to add new employees, while layering features provide multiple ways to view data. Company reports can be created, exported to PDF or printed as required.

The software also optimizes staff utilization through its Redundancy Selection Criteria Matrix. This helps managers to assess, score and rank staff according to skills, attitude and behavior. With the help of this data, HR managers can decide which staff members to retain. This can also help with compensation management around promotions, bonuses, commission, and so on.

WaypointHR is free to use.

Best free open source HR software

  • Free to use

SimpleHRM is an open-source human resource management software tool. It offers a full range of features, including personal information management, leave management, benefits administration, and travel management. Employees can use the self-service option to update their records, while managers benefit from detailed reports and statistics.

The user interface is designed to be easy to use for both managers and employees. The no-frills design allows users to focus on getting things done. This makes it a great—and accessible—solution for small to medium enterprises.

SimpleHRM is free to use.

Best for an employee self-service portal

  • Free to use
  • Free to use

This is a cloud-based, open-source HR software system that offers performance appraisal, leave management, and time tracking features.

Managers can track employees' personal information and manage hiring decisions. The background check function helps improve the hiring process, allowing managers to check the status of checks as they move through the system.

Sentrifugo includes an employee self-service portal where staff can log in to access and update their details. They can also view policy documents, such as employee handbooks. Employees can also add self-appraisals and comments for managers.

Sentrifugo is open source and free to use.

Other Open Source HR Software

Here are a few more worthwhile open source HR systems that didn’t make it into my top 10 list. I didn't have room for a full review of each of these but they are still worthy of consideration:

  1. Bazara

    Best for HR with talent acquisition.

  2. Jorani

    Best leave management software

  3. monday.com

    Best for data visualization

  4. Dolibarr

    Free, open-source ERP & CRM solution that incorporates Human Relationship Management features for administering employees, expense reports, leave requests, timesheets, and recruitment

  5. ADempiere

    This open-source Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) platform provides a full suite of applications, including human resources and payroll management

  6. ERP Next

    Open-source HRMS software that covers recruiting, onboarding, managing, and appraising employees

If you still haven't found what you're looking for here, check out these other related tools that we've tested and evaluated:

Selection Criteria for Open Source HR Software

Wondering how I selected the best open-source HR software for this list? I began by taking a look at open-source HR software with an abundance of positive user ratings. Then, I explored each platform to gain an understanding of what features they had to offer and what made them different from the competition.  

Next, to finalize my long list, I used the evaluation criteria below to further compare each of the long list nominees against each other. I also drew on my years of experience in HR to pick which solutions were most likely to provide the most value.

To satisfy your curiosity even further, here are the specific selection criteria I used to create this list:

Core HR Software Functionalities (25% of total score): For an HR system to land a spot in this list, it needed to offer the following core HR functionalities first:

  • The ability to edit the backend of the software to make customizations
  • Efficient management of employee records and data
  • Streamlined payroll processing
  • Facilitation of the recruitment and hiring process
  • Comprehensive tracking and management of employee performance
  • Simplified and compliant leave management

Additional Standout Features (25% of total score): To help me narrow in on the best open-source HR software out there, I also took note of any unique features, including:

  • Unique customization options that enhance flexibility
  • Analytics and reporting tools that provide deeper insights into HR operations
  • Innovative engagement tools like real-time feedback systems
  • Integration capabilities with other business systems such as ERP or financial software
  • Mobile application availability for remote access to HR functions

Usability (10% of total score): To evaluate the usability of each open-source HR system, I considered the following:

  • An intuitive design and user interface that are straightforward to master and create a positive user experience
  • Clear and concise on-screen instructions and tips to improve ease of use and create a positive user experience
  • A user-friendly mobile experience or dedicated mobile apps for Android and iOS mobile devices to support remote and on-the-go HR management
  • Role-based access controls that are straightforward to configure

Onboarding (10% of total score): To get a sense of each software provider's customer onboarding process, I considered the following factors:

  • A streamlined setup process and clear configuration guidelines for new users
  • The availability of training materials such as videos or interactive tutorials
  • The availability of live support or chatbots for real-time assistance during setup
  • Customizable templates to speed up the onboarding process
  • Support for migrating historical employee data into the new HR platform

Customer Support (10% of total score): To evaluate the level of customer support each vendor offered, I considered the following:

  • The availability of multiple support channels, including email, phone, and chat
  • Whether a dedicated account manager is provided for personalized support
  • The existence of a self-service knowledge base, an FAQ repository, or other self-help resources to speed up troubleshooting
  • The overall quality, responsiveness, and helpfulness of the support team during customer onboarding and post-purchase, as inferred from customer reviews

Value for Price (10% of total score): To gauge the value of each software, I considered the following factors:

  • The availability of free trials or demos to test the software before purchasing
  • Competitive and transparent pricing models that reflect the software's feature depth and explain which features are included at each level
  • Tiered pricing plans that cater to different business sizes, from small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) up to enterprise-level organizations

Customer Reviews (10% of total score): Evaluating customer reviews is the final element of my selection process, which helps me understand how well a product performs in the hands of real users. Here are the factors I considered:

  • Whether a product has consistently high ratings across multiple review platforms, indicating a broad level of user satisfaction
  • Specific praises, criticisms, or trends in customer feedback that indicate the software's strengths or areas for improvement
  • Whether customer feedback specifically mentions issues with ease of use, customer support responsiveness, or lacking features
  • Any testimonials that highlight significant improvements in HR processes or employee management capabilities

Using this assessment framework helped me identify the HR software that goes beyond basic requirements to offer additional value through unique features, intuitive usability, smooth onboarding, effective support, and overall value for price.

What is Open-Source HR software?

Open source HR software is a type of human resources management tool with its source code available for anyone to use, modify, and distribute. It allows businesses to customize their HR processes, including employee data management, payroll, recruitment, and performance evaluation, according to their specific needs. This software typically offers cost advantages and flexibility, supported by a community of developers and users.

Features of Open Source HR Software

When assessing which open-source HR software tools to add to my list, I dove into the following features to see how each system fared:

  • Payroll & benefits: Managing calculations for regular pay, overtime, taxes, insurance, and related factors.
  • Employee development & performance: Keeping track of progress and achievements to help plan career growth trajectories. Facilitate learning and professional development.
  • Managing employee information: Keeping track of employee information relating to contact details, positions, rates, vacations, and benefits. Document management is also an asset.
  • Applicant tracking system: Storing information about applicants for specific positions, results of interviews, salary expectations, job offers, etc.
  • Salary & benefits administration: Managing employee salaries and ensuring they receive benefits they are entitled to.
  • Absence management: Dealing with matters and calculations related to vacations, business trips, absenteeism, and sick leave. 

When using open source HR software, you have the freedom to customize the code. However, if customization isn't your priority, explore these HR software platforms that offer out-of-the-box functionalities.

Costs & Pricing for Open Source HR Software

Sometimes it all comes down to price, and open source software is generally very affordable. In fact, in many cases, the software is available to use for free with the option to scale up to a paid version of the same software if you want to access more advanced features. Having that kind of flexibility is great as a user. It means you can download it and spend some time getting comfortable with it before making your decision. And if you really love it, and want to access more features, you can either scale up, or ask your IT department to try and customize it for your own unique business needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some answers to frequently asked questions I often hear about open-source HR software:

What does "open source" mean in relation to software?

The term open source refers to a type of software development and distribution model where the source code of a computer program is made available to the public. With that information publicly accessible, other software developers can modify the underlying source code to customize the application for their own specific needs. Open source software is typically developed collaboratively within technical communities of developers who work on the project pro bono (i.e., for free) in order to advance the project along for the greater good of the industry and end users.

What is the difference between HRIS and HRMS?

Human Resources Information Systems (HRIS) are software that offer more basic functions like attendance, time tracking, and payroll processing. Human Resources Management Systems (HRMS) are employee management tools that take functionality a step further by including features like reporting, employee engagement, and performance appraisal.

What software integrations are important for open-source HR software?

Software integrations can save you a lot of grunt work, such as needing to transfer data manually, or via imports and exports, from one system to another. Instead, using native software integration, you’ll be able to improve your team’s productivity and help your HR professionals work more efficiently.

The specific integrations to look for will depend on the type of HR software you’re after, however, integrations with email providers, digital calendars, payroll software, and work platforms like Google Workspace and Microsoft SharePoint are always welcome.

Other HR Software Reviews

If you're looking for HR software that works within a limited budget, you may also want to take a peek at these lists too:

Or, if you're looking for a lengthier list of options, take a look at this list of my 60 favourite HR tools as well.

Covering All Your Bases

Open Source HR software is a fantastic option for automating your human resources functions without breaking the bank. The proof is in the numbers: HR software is a $10 billion dollar industry. Might now be the time to find a tool that can help your organization?

To learn more about managing people with SaaS tools, check out more of our articles on HR software, human resources management, and related topics.

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Related Read: How To Choose HR Software In 5 Easy Steps

By Kim Behnke

Kim Behnke is an HR Tool Expert & Writer for People Managing People. She draws on her 9 years of human resources experience and her keen eye for systematic processes to support her analyses of the top HR tools on the market. She is passionate about maximizing efficiencies and streamlining workflows to ensure internal systems run smoothly. Kim's HR experience includes recruitment, onboarding, performance management, training and development, policy development and enforcement, and HR analytics. She also has degrees in psychology, writing, publishing, and technical communication, and recently completed a Certified Digital HR Specialist program through the Academy to Innovate HR. When away from her desk, she can usually be found outside tending to her ever-expanding garden.