Payroll Blogger

A Human Resource Management & Payroll Software Blog

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This forum is used to share and exchange experiences, lessons and learning about software selection, software implementation and software ROI for Human Resource Management (HRM) systems and Payroll Software Applications.


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New Social Media Tool Adds Effectiveness to an Old HR Process

Employee Performance Reviews Done Facebook Style

For as long as human resource departments have existed, corporate human resource (HR) staff have been keeping track of employee benefits, employment records, performance reviews, staff seniority, hiring and firing and a myriad of other people-focused tasks related to a company's workers.

HR became more important as local, state and federal governments created new regulations, requirements and mandates for HR departments to adhere, such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), the Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Continued compliance requirements, corporate mandates and staff requests make HR much more complex, often cumbersome and potentially overwhelming, but the job has to be done.

To aid both efficiency and effectiveness, it's critical that your company use the payroll software and HR applications that you can deploy and run to automate and ensure regulatory compliance, accurate and private record-keeping and human performance goals.

While automation is a key benefit of HR applications, exceptions are common place in HR departments. Employees often need different things at different times, and that means that your HR applications have to be able to serve the masses while still meeting individual needs.

One start-up company, Rypple, is working to bring that kind of individualized, but automated approach into one of the oldest HR business practices-the annual employee performance review. Rypple took a fresh look at how staff reviews are done and decided to upgrade the process, according to a story in the Edmonton Journal.

"The new generation coming to work look at feedback as an opportunity to learn, while the older generation, the boomers, equate feedback with judgment," said David Stein, the co-founder of the employee evaluation software company. Read more »

A Call For HR and Payroll Applications To Aid HR and Payroll Staff

A Time To Help Those That Help All Others In Your Company

After nearly two years of company down-sizings, hiring freezes, layoffs and overall tough times across the nation, the U.S. economic recession reportedly bottomed out in June, 2009, according to a report from the private, non-profit economic research organization, the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). That may be the beginning of better things to come, but many corporate human resources and payroll departments are still reeling from the effects of the downturn that began in December 2007.

If your company experienced one or more rounds of layoffs, your Human Resources staff likely bore much of the brunt of those actions. If your business issued unpaid furloughs to save needed funds, the HR department had to deal with the many complex questions and worries from your affected staff. And if your company cut back on investments in employee benefits, company perks and motivational methods, your HR staff again faced the unpleasant tasks of explaining the cutbacks and seeing the changes through.

To rekindle the culture before the economic squeeze, consider beginning with your HR department, for effects there will extend to the rest of the organization.

Consider a new motivational push by showing your HR staff just how invaluable they have been through all of the economic uncertainty and upheaval by considering new HR systems and/or payroll applications, or related software technology, that can help eliminate manual entry, streamline business processes, provide on-demand reporting and otherwise help the people that can help the rest of your company.

Human Resources is seldom one of the first departments to be considered for important IT and enterprise software upgrades. Those projects are usually reserved for the sales department to acquire a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system, or the back office to acquire an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) application, or maybe the warehouse to implement a new Supply Chain Management (SCM) system. The priority is often given to business software systems which directly interface to customers, suppliers and other partners, as those are sources where revenues come from. No argument that these functions are critical to company operations and growth strategies, however, employees should also be looked at as customers. Read more »

An Experts Idea On How To Get More Out of Your Payroll & HR Applications

Take a fresh look at old stalwarts like payroll and HR systems

For many IT leaders, the focus of long-term technology and strategy projects often center on cutting edge topics such as cloud computing, software-as-a-service, open source software or green IT. While these innovative topics may be relevant in pursuing the business' interest, too often companies look at these types of new initiatives at the expense of existing, core critical business processes such as payroll and human resources (HR).

That needs to change for organizations to get the most out of what they already have, said John Mancini, President of non-profit group AIIM, based in Silver Spring, MD, which helps businesses understand the challenges associated with managing content and business processes.

Payroll and HR are not terribly exciting topics, Mancini said, "but they are vitally important and there are a lot of opportunities for companies "to make useful improvements and process upgrades." They are core business processes that any enterprise has to maintain, including many critical but non-sexy functions such as invoice processing, HR documentation and other back-end processes.

What's needed, according to Mancini, is an inward-looking approach by management to determine just how important these not-so-exciting applications and processes are to their operations.

Both payroll and human resource applications tend to have two characteristics that are very important to business, he said. "They tend to involve a lot of ad-hoc, unstructured documentation coming in from a lot of different sources, and putting a structure around that is very important." Those well defined, repetitive workflows are critical to maintain and build upon, because without them, systems and employee services can break down very quickly, Mancini said. Read more »

HR & Payroll Systems Require Periodic Reviews

Don't Let Payroll and HR Applications Become The Overlooked Systems

In life and in business, it's often the things you don't think about that can bite you. That's where things like payroll processing and human resources management can cause aggravation for a business. Why? Because they've been around for so long and they are so routine to a business that sometimes they can be overlooked in favor of seemingly more exciting business systems such as Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software or Business Process Management (BPM) tools.

So what's the right visibility to use today for managing and advancing payroll and HR processes inside your company? It depends on the size of your business and what your specific goals are, says Frank Scavo, an ERP analyst and President of IT consulting firm, Strativa.

"There are very few companies that do payroll manually anymore," he says. "It's too easy to do it in-house with Intuit's QuickBooks or a third-party vendor like ADP or even using QuickBooks."

Those options can make sense because of the cost savings involved, Scavo said. "It's too expensive to be doing payroll yourself anymore," he suggests. "Plus, the cost is too great in terms of regulatory compliance requirements" that your company must adhere to. "It is usually cheaper to hand off your payroll to someone else rather than to do it yourself today." Read more »

Increasing ERP Value with Integrated Payroll and HR

Centralized Systems Deliver Increased Automation and Information

If your organization could use existing data to create new competitive insights and leverage even greater productivity, you'd probably do it in a heartbeat. Software analyst Albert Pang believes that some of the best information your company isn't yet using to its fullest can be discovered and leveraged by integrating your Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system and your payroll and human resources (HR) applications.

The opportunity, says Pang, who founded independent research firm, Apps Run The World, and previously worked as an enterprise software analyst for IDC for 11 years, is that companies are running so many disparate applications that critical data connections are not being made. To fix that, Pang recommends its time for businesses to look at integrating their payroll and HR systems more tightly with their ERP system. "It's long overdue," Pang noted in an interview. "The world needs a much more streamlined and integrated approach."

The more data businesses have, the easier it is to make informed decisions, plan strategy and leverage your workforce to its highest potential, Pang notes. "A typical HR application now might only be used by the HR department, but increasingly your line of business managers want to have access to that data to respond to market changes," Pang explained. "They really want to have a much more responsive type of system and ERP systems with talent management modules would help."

Such a central information system could tie e-recruitment, performance management, e-learning and compensation modeling into the ERP backbone, giving decision makers a great new source of data for decision-making, he said. Read more » | Human Resources Management & Payroll Systems Blog