Background

Between 2009 and 2010 3 HR/Payroll process were automated.  This resulted in new modules being implemented within HRMS:  Position Management, eRecruit, and ePAF.  These systems streamlined the recruitment and employment maintenance processes and replaced much of the need for paper appointment forms.

In paper-based systems, approvals are collected as hand-written signatures on forms.  As processes are automated, it is not practical to continue this practice.  Consequently, electronic approvals – called workflow – were implemented in the above 3 systems.  This is achieved by sending each approver an email that forwards them to the appropriate transaction where they can approve or deny the transaction.

Despite the best intentions, it became evident that the workflow technology employed by the 3 HRMS modules needed improvement for the following reasons:

  • Inconsistent experience – For users, Workflow looked and behaved differently in each module.
  • Excessive maintenance and support effort – From a central perspective, administration and technical support was different for each system.
  • Lack of features – Workflow was implemented in a very basic way.  More features were desirable.
  • Scalability – A workflow solution was needed that could meet the needs of future modules, both inside and outside HRMS.

Input from the user community was needed to help focus improvement efforts.  To this end, a business analyst was hired to conduct workshops and interviews with the user community on both campuses.  Information was collected, distilled, and follow up presentations were conducted to confirm the strategy and priorities for improvement.

If some of the terms above are unfamiliar to you, please check out our HRMS Overview.

What Was Done

Efforts focused on the user experience.

  • A central repository was created to hold workflow rules for all modules in a standard format.
  • Flexibility to allow departments to identify as many approval steps as they required.
  • Ability to see and fix approval steps for a transaction prior to them being used in the workflow process (where they are harder to fix).
  • Accommodate situations where an approver is not available – backup approvers, delegation to an alternate, reassignment of a specific approval to another person.
  • Being able to add an additional approver to a transaction, on the fly.
  • Incorporate approvers from the FMS signing authority system.

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