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TRENT HR USER GROUP Powered By Docstoc


Tuesday 21 April 2009 at 11am

Room 320, Laver Building


1. Trent HR Project Team (page 2)

2. Terms of reference and membership of user group (pages 3-4)

3. Progress report and Project plan (pages 5-9)

   There will be demonstrations of:

      Self-service (Dan Isaac)

      e-recruitment (Julie Clark)

      Trent HR webpages (Andrew Johnson)

      Infoview reporting (Andrew Johnson)

4. Issues raised by Schools and Services and other users

5. Issues to raise with Midland at next user forum

6. Review of first meeting and recommendations for future scope/format/date etc of user group.

                                                     Trent HR User Group: Tuesday 21 April 2009: page 1

TRENT HR USER GROUP, Tuesday 21 April 2009


The Trent HR Project Team comprises the following members;

Name                Role/Leading on
Emma Baker          Project Manager
Richard Autherson   IT lead
Doreen Mullan       Interfaces, Trent implications of Aptos recoding
Alan Doggett        Business Objects reporting
Jan Penaluna        Tax year end, payroll issues
Chris Bolt          User manuals, organisation changes, workflows, HESA
Andrew Johnson      Personnel lead
Julie Clark         e-recruitment
Lizzy Wright        personnel issues
Rachel Wall         personnel issues
Stephen Woodcock    payroll issues
Dan Isaac           self-service, Trent implications of Aptos recoding
Paul Lightowlers    User support, helpdesk
Tom Gardner         User manuals, e-recruitment, user registration, security, HESA

Andrew Johnson
Personnel and Staff Development

                                                   Trent HR User Group: Tuesday 21 April 2009: page 2

TRENT HR USER GROUP, Tuesday 21 April 2009


Terms of Reference
The Trent HR User Group (THRUG) is the key stakeholders‟ group for users of the University‟s HR
system (Trent HR), managers and administrators who receive and rely upon HR information from
the University‟s HR system and staff who are responsible for system support and development.
1.    To provide a forum for the exchange of information and experiences relating to the use of
      the University‟s HR system and its role within business processes and procedures.
2.    To consider common problems and consult on preferred solutions with a view to the
      promotion and application of best practice.
3.    To act as a forum for the dissemination of information on present use and actual or
      proposed changes and improvements.
4.    To provide a framework in which users are encouraged and enabled to influence
      improvements and developments in all matters relating to the University‟s HR system and to
      put forward and review suggestions for system enhancements.

Independent Chair: Gail Seymour, School Manager for the School of Psychology and member of
the HR Replacement Project Board has agreed to undertake this role for the first year.
(“Independent” means not a member of : Personnel and Staff Development, Finance Services or
Business Improvement and System Support.)

Personnel and Staff Development
      Administration and Recruitment (2)   Julie Clarke and Pippa Jackson
      Learning and Development (1)         Kathryn Coombes
      Operations (2)                       tbc
      Payroll (1)                          Becky Jones
      Pensions (1)                         Alison Rose

Finance Services/Corporate Services
      Accounting (2)                       Abi Mahde and Andrew George
      Research Accounting (1)              Steve Popham
      Payments (1)                         Gill Pearn

Other Stakeholders
       Representatives of Schools (3):    Helen Pisarska (SoGAER)
                                          Caroline Hampson (Biosciences)
                                          Dawn Teed (SALL)
       Representatives of Services (3):   Gill Malpas (Communication and Partnership)
                                          Caroline Adams (Academic Services)
                                          Patrick Kennedy (Planning Services)
       Other internal Learning and Development providers (1) - tbc

System Administration
      Policy team, Personnel and Staff Development
      Trent HR Project Team/Business Improvement and System Support, Academic Services

Frequency of Meetings
The initial proposal is that THRUG will meet at least twice a year, in March/April and
October/November, but it is suggested that this proposal be reviewed following this first meeting.

                                                 Trent HR User Group: Tuesday 21 April 2009: page 3
Administrative Arrangements
The Policy Team in Personnel and Staff Development will act as Secretary to the Group.
Notice of meetings will be communicated via a circulation list of nominated representatives, who
will take responsibility for ensuring the most appropriate individuals attend each meeting.
Stakeholders will be given the opportunity to add items to the agenda by giving prior notification to
the Group secretary.
Items arising from meetings of THRUG will be reported to the Corporate Systems Group, as

Andrew Johnson
Personnel and Staff Development

                                                   Trent HR User Group: Tuesday 21 April 2009: page 4

TRENT HR USER GROUP, Tuesday 21 April 2009


Progress to date
1         Trent HR went live in April 2008 when all staff paid on the „main payroll‟ were paid for the
          first time through Trent.
2         At the same time, the new style payslips were issued. Following representations made by a
          number of staff, the printing of bank account numbers on payslips was discontinued after
          one month.
3         Individuals paid on a claims basis – both weekly and monthly – including Graduate
          Teaching Fellows were transferred from AltaHR to Trent HR for payment from August 2008.
4         The payment of ERBS pensioners has also been processed through Trent HR since April
5         August 2008 increments were processed through Trent with a few teething problems and
          we have planned to manage this more effectively in July and August 2009. Other significant
          payroll changes (2 general increases, in May and October 2008, outcomes of the
          Professorial Salary Review and payment of the University Bonus in December 2008) were
          managed more effectively than would have been possible on AltaHR. (This was mainly
          achieved by the ability to upload changes from spreadsheets.)
6         Limited sickness absence information from AltaHR was migrated to Trent HR for sick pay
          purpose. Trent HR automatically calculates and processes sick pay and maternity pay.
          (The Payroll Office did this manually in AltaHR.) We have some continued concerns about
          whether this functionality is working effectively: it is necessary to devote a significant
          amount of time in the Payroll Office to checking Trent‟s calculation of sickness. The main
          problems relate to term-time staff, staff who have changed jobs or FTE and staff with more
          than one position. (We are working with consultants from Midland Trent to develop
          solutions to these problems to free time in the Payroll Office.)
Personnel Administration
7         All personnel administration has been managed through Trent HR from April 2008 – ie
          creation of records for new staff/appointments, changes to contracts (eg renewals changes
          to FTE) processing of leavers etc.
8         There have been a number of changes to the structure of the University since April 2008
          which have been implemented in Trent HR.
9         To ensure that the University is meeting its obligations under the legislation on Right to
          Work in the UK, we have reviewed the data related to this and reports are being developed
          to identify staff who need repeat checks etc.
10        Reports from Trent HR began to become available from May 2008. Most reports have to be
          developed in-house using Business Objects. The version of Business Objects we are using,
          along with the Trent HR database itself, is more sophisticated than reporting from AltaHR:
          this slowed the initial development of reports and led to some data errors in earlier versions
          of reports.
11        Initially, reports for managers in Schools and Services were run by staff in Personnel, who
          emailed an Excel version of the report to School Managers etc. Scheduled reports – which
          are automatically run „in the background‟ by Business Objects and emailed in Excel format
          to nominated staff – began to become available from September 2008. Managers who

                                                      Trent HR User Group: Tuesday 21 April 2009: page 5
       receive scheduled reports are reminded about the data protection „conditions of use‟ of data
       from Trent HR.
12     There are now over 100 „on-request‟ reports which have been developed for users in
       Accounting, Learning and Development, Payments, Payroll, Pensions and Personnel
       Operations. There are also nearly 300 scheduled reports which are programmed to run
       automatically each month.
13     There is currently one full-time member of staff working on requests for new reports,
       requests for scheduling of reports and requests for enhancement/modification to existing
       reports. As expected, „supply creates its own demand‟ – there is a long list of requests
       which, regrettably, have to be responded to on a priority basis. This means that some
       people may have to wait a significant period before their request can be actioned.
HESA Staff Return
14     Trent HR went live in April 2008, at the commencement of a new tax year, whereas the
       HESA reporting year ran from August 2007 to July 2008. Consequently, for 2007/8, the
       HESA return had to be built from both AltaHR and Trent HR. This was a time-consuming
       process and consequently the University‟s submission was made later than usual.
15     Webpages for users of Trent HR and managers who receive information from Trent HR
       have been created within the Personnel and Staff Development webpages at Further information will be added as the
       project continues (for example, reports and minutes of User Group meetings). Currently
       there are links to information about:
          data protection and how the University uses data about employees recorded on Trent
          a summary of generic reports which School and Service and for specific units within
           Schools and Services and data protection standards for users of these reports;
          how to lodge a problem with the Helpdesk;
          registration form for new users;
          calendar of activities; and
          protocols for uploading data.
Registration and Security
16     There are now ?? users of Trent HR in the University (based in Accounting, Learning and
       Development, Payments, Payroll, Pensions Personnel Administration and Personnel
       Operations as well as the Project Team). Initially, all AltaHR users were automatically
       created as users on Trent HR, but we have now asked all existing users to formally re-
       register so that there is an auditable record of who has been granted access. The
       registration form draws the user‟s attention to data protection standards and they are
       required to sign that they understand these. Further refinements to the registration process
       may be necessary to ensure that data protection is effectively managed.
17     Since January 2009. all problems and questions from Trent HR users about use of the
       system have been directed to the IT Helpdesk in the first instance.
18     The purpose of this change was to provide users with a more effective standard of service
       which could be logged at any time and tracked and (if necessary) escalated through the
       Helpdesk's eSupport web portal. In addition, by recording all queries through the
       Helpdesk's eSupport web portal, we can more effectively monitor trends and discover
       underlying problems, enabling more effective solutions to be developed for frequent
       problems. This in turn will assist us to more effectively monitor the ongoing level of user

                                                  Trent HR User Group: Tuesday 21 April 2009: page 6
           support which Trent HR users will require when the Project Team comes to an end in
           summer 2009.
19         Instructions on the Trent webpages advise Trent users to observe standards of
           confidentiality when lodging problems with the Helpdesk. Most problems are currently
           forwarded to the Project Team for resolution. Since the introduction of this method of
           recording and resolving user issues, over 40 problems have been lodged with the Helpdesk
           each month.
Project Team and ongoing support
20         The project will run until July 2009, after which the ongoing support and development of
           Trent HR will be handed to Personnel and Staff Development, with technical support from
           the BISS team in Academic Services. From summer 2009, the Trent Support Team in the
           Personnel and Staff Development Policy Team will comprise 2.6 staff, including 1.0 FTE on
           a fixed term to Spring 2010.
Priorities for 2009
21         The Project Board has agreed the following priorities for the Project Team, to be completed
           by July 2009.
22         A significant amount of work has been invested in developing the user interface for job
           applicants to apply for vacancies online. E-recruitment will allow all job applicants to apply
           online, which will also improve the University's ability to undertake equality and diversity
           monitoring of recruitment activity and, in turn, achieve Two Ticks status for its commitment
           to the employment of people with disabilities. Eventually, the current web listing of
           vacancies will be replaced by a new Trent e-recruitment interface. We will shortly begin
           piloting e-recruitment for a small number of jobs with a view to extending e-recruitment to
           all vacancies from the beginning of the next academic year.
23         The e-recruitment functionality also encompasses recruitment administration and we are
           now working on how this will be utilised, not just within the recruitment team in Personnel
           and Staff Development but by recruiting managers across the University. E-recruitment
           offers the University significant opportunities for saving on administration, which will be
           important in achieving the Creating Value agenda.
24         Once this has been completed we will continuing work on the development of an e-SR1, to
           replace the paper SR1, within Trent HR, allowing Schools and Services to track progress of
           their proposals.
25         The University has to make a number of statutory returns to HMRC for the end of the tax
           year via 'e-filing' and there are financial penalties for failing to make these returns on time.
           Since this is the first year we will be making our e-fling returns via Trent HR, it is essential
           that we invest resources in ensuring that this functionality is fully and successfully tested so
           that we can meet our statutory obligations.
Employee self-service
26         Following an initial trial of employee self-service in the BISS team in Academic Services in
           March, a more comprehensive pilot – using the Live system – will take place in Academic
           Services, Personnel and Staff Development and the School of Psychology in April. It is
           planned to extend this to all staff (excluding individuals engaged on a claims basis) from
           May 2009. Access will be via a link on the staff portal
27         Trent‟s self service functionality offers only a limited range of information – including
           personal details, bank details, payslips and employment details. Most fields will be view
           only but some will be open to updating by employees. In particular, Employment Details
           (job title, unit, location etc) will be read only and any changes which staff may wish to make
           will need to be formally approved by a senior manager in their School or Service.

                                                       Trent HR User Group: Tuesday 21 April 2009: page 7
28     Another limitation of Trent‟s self service functionality is that it is not currently possible to
       embed the user guide which has been developed into the interface, so users will have to
       view this in another window. It is hoped that further enhancements of self service by
       Midland Trent will address some of these issues in the future.
29     From the beginning of the new leave year in 2010, employee self-service will be extended
       to the booking of annual leave.
30     As part of the Creating Value agenda, we will also be looking at replacing printed payslips
       with the electronic payslips that staff can access via self service.
Learning event administration
31     After the implementation of employee self-service, this will be extended to the booking of
       learning events. We will also be looking at using Trent for recording PDRs (e-PDR).
Sickness absence
32     We will be working with sickness monitors in Schools and Services to replace the current
       arrangements of sending weekly paper returns of sickness absence to Personnel and Staff
       Development with direct input into Trent HR. This will improve the timeliness of information
       and give Schools and Services greater access to sickness absence data about staff in their
       teams. In addition to testing security issues and looking at the registration process, we
       recognise that this will need to be fully supported through training and user support.
33     We are currently working with Halls of Residence to upload information about overtime
       working from spreadsheets, avoiding the duplication of input and increasing accuracy. It
       may be possible to extend this to other actions, such as uploading of weekly claims, which
       are currently input manually.
General Ledger recoding
34     The General Ledger recoding project will have significant implications for the University‟s
       use of the Trent HR system and the managing the recoding changes in Trent HR and its
       interface with Aptos is one of the agreed priorities for the Project Team.
35     Alongside these developments, we will continue to support the provision of management
       information through reporting. Further reports will be developed as need arises but priority
       will be given to those which are necessary for system administration, strategic management
       and monitoring and statutory purposes (for example, equality and diversity, increments,
       HESA, Right to Work checks). All requests for new reports, amendments to existing reports
       and changes to recipients of scheduled reports should be directed to the IT Helpdesk in the
       first instance.
Input of staff expenses
36     Following further consideration of this issue with managers in Finance Services, and taking
       account of the GL recoding project, it is likely that from August 2009 staff expenses will be
       administered through Aptos rather than Trent HR.
Other Priorities
37     Additionally, we are addressing the following:
           Workflows: ie where the passing of a date or the entry/change of data in a field „pings‟
            an email automatically to nominated recipients. Initially, we are developing workflows
            for probation and fixed term contract renewals/expiry.
           Using Trent‟s template function to create appointment letters
           HESA: the whole of the 2008/9 return will be created within Trent HR, but Trent is
            unable to fully calculate values for atypical staff (ie individuals paid by claim), which will
            need to be manipulated manually outside of the system. Additionally, HESA have

                                                     Trent HR User Group: Tuesday 21 April 2009: page 8
          introduced a number of new data requirements for 2008/9, which Trent HR will address
          through a new release in May 2009.
         Manager Access: we have begun to test the security functionality of manager access,
          which will allow managers read-only access for staff in their teams. This is based on the
          employees from whom they are recorded on the system as being the Reporting
          Manager, so it is important that this information is correct. An employee can only have
          one Reporting Manager. Where authorisation is required to a training event or holiday
          request made by an employee through self-service, managers will give their
          authorisation through Trent manager access. In addition to considering the security set-
          up, we also need to consider registration procedures and training and support for
         Other School/Service Access: we have also begun to test the security functionality of
          other read only access for managers in Schools and Services – eg School Managers,
          Finance Officers etc. Sickness monitors will also be covered by such access. As with
          manager access, this raises questions about registration procedures and training and
          support, as well as security.
Andrew Johnson
Personnel and Staff Development

                                                 Trent HR User Group: Tuesday 21 April 2009: page 9

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