I sat down with the Director of Sales, Jeff Byrnes, to discuss the HRIS sales process and how we could make the entire cycle easier for all members involved. If you’re currently engaged with, or purchased a large system in the past, then you know that there are multiple areas that can snag up a project. And, if you are about to embark on this journey, I hope that the “pain points” covered below, and the straightforward guidance that I provide, will ease your stress and, ultimately, save your company the most important things: time and money.
- I felt unprepared when speaking to the Sales person, what should I have known beforehand?
It is best to meet internally before pursuing any type of new HRIS, whether it be new HRMS, Payroll, or Learning Managment software etc. With your team, it is vital to develop a list of “needs” or “must-haves” in your system, and then create a secondary, “wants” list, with facets of the software that are up for compromise. From there, your team should identify, and have a good understanding of, what they would like to get out of a system in the next two to three years, keeping in mind the potential changes and areas for growth of the company. A system that is a good fit should be flexible, and have the ability to evolve right along with the organization.
- I know that my department will be involved with the new system, but who else should I bring on board?
From the very beginning, ideally in the meeting(s) mentioned above, the following people/departments of your company should be involved:
- IT: you should alert them (before you start your search) that you are considering changing your current system, and then listen to their feedback. Trust me, I’m sure they’ll have something to say! From there, include them, when appropriate, in discussions with the salesperson, and have them make sure that the software’s system requirements are compatible with your current server environment. They’ll also be key in explaining the technical jargon that flies over your head!
- True Decision Makers: Not to burst your bubble, but just because you think you have the power to make this big decision, you may be caught with surprise when your CEO or CIO bluntly declines your proposal. To prevent this, have them involved from the launch date and make sure that they identify the ROI of the new software. If they’re involved, they will feel much more comfortable with the purchase and be more likely to help you make it happen.
- Anyone Who May Touch the System: When you first pursue a new system the excitement may blind your ability to predict all of the possible members of the company who could utilize the system; a system that will not only make your life easier, but also theirs! Payroll, Recruiting, Training, Safety Managers, Benefits Administrators, and HR are all possible users of any HRIS system. Don’t forget to talk to them and include them when necessary.
Stay Tuned for Part 2 With More of your Questions Answered!
Photo Credit: freefotouk
In addition to being a boring, repetitive administrative task, data entry can also be extremely time consuming and leaves room for inaccurate information to be entered and errors to be made. Because of these reasons, it has become clear to many HR departments that switching over to a self-service system makes sense.
Long time Sage Abra and Dresser & Associates customer, GreenbergFarrow was an early adopter of this process. It has improved their efficiency and cut costs along the way. In the November edition of HR Magazine, Rita Harris, SPHR, director of HR for GreenbergFarrow discussed the impact that Abra Employee Self Service has had on the company. Rita is a very active member of the SHRM-Atlanta Chapter and strong user of the Abra HRIS solution. Dresser & Associates is excited for her reorganization by SHRM as a leader in her field.
To view the article, “Making the Move to Manager Self-Service,” please visit:
For more information on Sage Abra ESS, please visit:
After purchasing your new HRIS software it is now time to implement your new system. This step could either be a “Step Two” in the purchasing of a new HRIS system or it could be the monkey wrench in the process. Common misconceptions and unclear timelines can greatly damage and slow the implementation process. It is important that a clear step-by-step process be outlined, a sturdy timeline be in place and common issues that normally arise, be discussed and prevented before the HRIS is implemented.
GENERAL TIMELINE FOR IMPLEMENTATION
A common misconception of implementing an HRIS is the time it takes to get your system up and running. This time includes installing the system, preparing and converting data, training users on how the system is used and trouble shooting to ensure users can be off and running after the system is installed. A typical install usually takes an average of six to eight weeks with a technician spending six to eight hours a day, one day a week. It is important that a timeline be established before the process begins and all involved in the process follows the timeline as closely as possible.
WHAT IS THE IMPLEMENTATION PROCESS?
- Discovery: In the discovery session, a project manager, consultant and your team drill-down on the information gathered during the Business Process Audit and discuss in detail your requirements, structure and the steps necessary to successfully integrate the solution into your environment. This is also the start of creating the timeline and assigning responsible parties for each step of the project. After the meeting, a finished timeline with dates is forwarded for your approval. It is important that these dates be carefully reviewed, as future changes can cause delays.
- Installation: Depending on the solution, installation is performed by your IT department, consultant or both. Some of the products may require skill sets that might require a consultant to do the installation.
- Data Conversion: Implementation of relevant HRMS data from your current systems. After core data is implemented, setup and configuration continues to complete this phase.
- Review and Testing: An important step in implementation is confirming that the information is accurate and business rules are working properly.
- Training: Training sessions should begin with an overview of the system. Through the knowledge gained during setup and review, time is needed to refine the steps required to use the system to match your internal processes. Training should be focused on the core aspects that prompted the purchase. During this entire process, be sure that your consultant records their observations regarding the need for additional training and implementation assistance.
- Going Live: This is the day your investment begins to pay dividends.
- Post Implementation Review: Some time after the go-live, a review of how the system is being used is necessary. Often, valuable functions are not being used most effectively or not at all. At this point, be sure your consultant provides guidance and remedial training to ensure that you obtain the full value from your investment.
THINGS THAT CAN TYPICALY GO WRONG DURING AN INSTAL
- Old system data is in an unstable format
- Old system data can not be found
- Unclear expectations
- Prep work has not been done or is incomplete
HOW TO PREVENT ISSUES FROM ARISING
Have a clear timeline – Realize it is going to take as much time to implement the system as it is going to take to prepare for implementation. Users and consultants should be working as a team to ensure the deadlines that were set before implementation are being met and followed.
Team effort- Users should be reading the manual at each step of the implementation to ensure all questions are being answered before they become an issue. Data that needs to be transferred from the old system to the new should be accessible and ready for the consultant. In most cases, this data is entered into the new system by the users, so be aware that this can take some time.
Clear expectations – Understand that the new system is not the old system. It is going to get some getting used to and some training for users to familiarize themselves with using the new system. The new system should not be used the way the old system was, this defeats the purpose of the new system.
Sage Abra HRMS Version 8.4, and Sage Abra Suite Version 7.7 are scheduled for release this summer. Both include enhancements, primarily to the Payroll, HR, Attendance, Link, and Workforce Connections modules.
The release incorporates 47 specific enhancements. Check out some of the highlighted enhancements in
our most recent newsletter. Also, sign up for a webcast on the updated versions by visiting our Free Webcasts page.
Dresser & Associates
Posted in Abra Alerts, Abra Attendance, Abra Employee Self Service, Abra eRecruiter, Abra ESS, Abra HR, Abra Payroll, Abra Support, Abra Training, Benefits enrollment, benefits messenger, customer service, Employee Management, Employee Self Service, HR Management, HR Software, HR Software News, HRIS, HRIS Software, HRMS, HRMS Software News, Human Resources, Sage Abra HRMS, Sage Abra News, Sage Compliance Services, Sage Support
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Dresser & Associates
Posted in Abra Alerts, Abra Attendance, Abra Employee Self Service, Abra eRecruiter, Abra ESS, Abra HR, Abra Payroll, Abra Support, Abra Training, Benefits enrollment, benefits messenger, customer service, Employee Management, Employee Self Service, Hiring Process, HR Management, HR Software, HR Software News, HRIS, HRIS Software, HRMS, HRMS Software News, Human Resources, Performance Management, Recruiting Process, Sage Abra HRMS, Sage Abra News, Sage Compliance Services, succession planning, Talent management, Tax filing