Nov. 2, 2006
Vol. 26 No. 4

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    UHRM employees to serve as test group for computer-based attendance system

    Punching time clocks and writing attendance slips by hand will soon be a thing of the past.

    A new computer-based system, which University staff and administrators have been designing for several years, will be implemented in offices around campus sometime next year.

    On a campus where technology advances on a regular basis, those involved in the planning process say this upgrade will be a highly anticipated improvement..

    “It’s been a very thoughtful process,” said Judith Friedberg, Executive Assistant to the Vice President for Administration and the Chief Financial Officer. “We have been careful and considerate, in the hopes that there will be as few challenges as possible when we get to the implementation phase.”

    Although the new system likely will not affect the majority of people on campus until sometime at the end of 2007, employees in University Human Resources Management will serve as a test group for the system later this year to gauge its function and appeal.

    “The test group will provide important feedback so that when the new system is implemented across campus, we’ll be better prepared, know what to expect and be better equipped to address any glitches or problems that could arise,” Friedberg said. “We will make sure this will all be as smooth as possible.”

    The Office of Training and Development is well into its planning for the training process. “We are hiring two people to assist as we train employees on the new system,” said Arnie Aronoff, Director of the Office of Training and Development.

    Aronoff said training materials will eventually be available online and in hard copy through his office, and that training sessions will be conducted in classrooms, on the Internet and within some individual offices as well.

    William Hogan Jr., University Comptroller and sponsor of the project, said his goals for the new attendance system include increasing efficiency across campus by processing payroll transactions electronically, reducing paper usage and providing better management reporting for departments, divisions and central administration.

    “This really has been a long time coming for the University,” Hogan said. “The process of using paper time cards is archaic. Our advancement to a computer-based system will allow the University payroll system to run much more efficiently.”

    UHRM estimates up to 8,000 pieces of paper are used monthly for time cards and attendance slips. The new system will reduce that number to zero, Hogan noted.

    He added that there would be a learning process for employees and staff while adjusting to the new system.

    “Change is always hard and implementing a new system of any kind is always challenging, but the end result will definitely be a positive one,” Hogan said. “I’m delighted we are moving forward with this.”