Based on the knowledge acquired from Project Management Institute’s work (2008) on the handling of projects, the titles that follow will be effective in regards to GenRays’ HRIS project.
The major purpose of implementing this human resource information system in the Gen Rays Company will be to improve the overall operations of the human resource department. Other purposes for introducing it will be:
To increase the accuracy of data as well as information relating to the company work force
This system will ensure that data are maintained and will prevent crucial organization information from getting lost as would have been the case if data are maintained manually in form of files or papers.
For future Human Resource (HR) planning
By having all information concerning the employees in a company, the human resource manager is able to plan for the future needs of the workers. For instance, having information concerning the educational achievements and developments of employees enables one to determine the skills that the employees are lacking, hence plan for future trainings and seminars. Having information about the age brackets of all employees also help the managers determine the number of employees about to go on retirement, hence, plan for future recruitment as well as selection of potential employees to fill out vacancies left by these employees.
To align the human resource department policies and objectives with the overall organizational goals
Having this database makes it easier to evaluate the performance of the human capital and determine whether its productivity is in line with the set organizational goals. If there is a diversion, appropriate measures are implemented to ensure the workforce works in line with the organization goals.
To provide information for decision making
The human resource information system ensures that data are readily available when needed to make decisions thus ensuring quick and efficient decision making which saves time.
The human resource information system is a centralized automated HR tool, which helps the human resource manager to effectively perform his/her functions of employee recruitment and selection, training and development, as well as employee issues relating to discipline and performance management.
It is composed of databases, computer applications, hardware and software which are in perfect condition to collect, store , maintain and help in retrieval of information concerning an organization’s human resources. It also facilitates manipulation and validation of data. All the functions of management require the use of this system as it integrates all the activities in the organization so that they are all aligned towards achievement of the organization’s goals and objectives.
Some of the objectives of introducing this HRIS will be:
To manage succession planning
Employees are able to know where the openings to career development are and also what skill it takes to fill out these vacancies in the organization. They can then enroll for classes to improve their skills or undergo various forms of training.
To keep track of performance reviews
The HRIS will eradicate the document storage system in which the information stored is not always searchable when required to be retrieved. This is because mostly the records are handwritten. A HRIS will moderate the quantity of paperwork concomitant to performance appraisals. It will be easier to manage performance appraisal reports and follow up on the results to ensure employees work to meet targets that they had not met during appraisal.
To increase competitiveness and higher productivity
Due to saving time in the processes of human resource management, the company will have a competitive advantage over the competitors. Maintaining accurate records of all activities undertaken by employees ensures that management of the company is geared towards attainment of set organizational goals and this eventually translates to increased productivity.
To reduce database systems to a manageable level
Eliminating the bulk of workload related to keeping records in paper form will make accessibility of information much easier. It will also reduce number of employees required to handle this paper work. This is a cost saving means for the organization.
To keep track of training records
The records are entered into the system by the employees who then keep track of their progress and chart a course within which they intend to follow so as to attain their development goals.
To manage employee data base and e-forms
One of the major objectives of the HRIS will be to contain up-to-date information about the employees concerning their office location, telephone contacts and so forth. The electronic forms will permit forms to be produced and their fields be populated by the data base. This will be similar to mail merge and will help save money and time on filling forms.
Easier management of payroll capabilities
This will be reflected by removal of manual entry of time cards. This means a more efficient way of monitoring employees in the work place in terms of time usage. There will also be efficiency in managing employees pay slips, in terms of allowances and deductions to be made as all the information required to do so will be present in the human resource system.
Success Criteria and Expected Benefits
The success criteria that Gen rays company will use in determining the success of this human resource information system will be in terms of:
This will be portrayed by the decrease in time spent to process employee information transaction and also in notable decrease of time spent in administrative work so as to pay more attention to operational work which is vital for improvement of the company’s productivity.
Efficiency will also be noted through the ability of the current human resource officers to manage the work force without outsourcing for further help.
The effectiveness of the human resource information system will determine if its implementation is a success to the organization. This will be portrayed by accuracy of the employee information records and also by managers increasing access to employee information such that for employees who have either applied for a post or promotion, they are able to follow up on the process.
This is also a criterion which will be used for determining the success of the HRIS. Since most of the users will be human resource professionals, the ease with which they are able to access information on the data base and also use this system will show how successful the system will be. A successful system leaves the users satisfied with the services it has offered to them. For instance, if the HRIS is being used in the recruitment process, both the potential candidates feeding their information and credentials in the system and the managers analyzing this information during selection should be satisfied.
This will measure technical success of the system. If the technological system is successful, people will wish to use the system again. However, those without any technical background information will find it challenging to use this system; hence provisions for training them in order to enhance acquisition of the relevant skills will be put in place.
As for the benefits
Some of the benefits accrued from introducing this system to the company include:
- Easier reporting as well as accountability since data required are readily available and can be referred back to clarify any arising issues after reporting on matters concerning the work force.
- There is ability for employees to follow up on processes like recruitment in a timely manner so that they readily respond when required to.
- It provides motivation for employees as they know records of their trainings, promotions and performance appraisals are kept – these help to process their fringe benefits like bonuses.
- There will be easier tracking of employee’s certificates and educational requirements.
- Easier communication and government compliance will be achieved.
- It will be possible to link time information to attendance information so as to keep track of employee’s commitment to their work.
- Linking benefits like time and sick leaves to attendance (instead of years of experience) will be possible.
- Generally, it will save on time. For instance, the time used to enter data weekly will be greatly reduced as employees can enter their information on their own.
Company profits will be the main source of funding for this project. As the profit cost chart shows, the company has been on the upward trend concerning profit making. For instance, profits tripled in the second quarter of the financial year of the company. These profits will provide the much needed capital for the project.
Savings have also been made from the new financial system. It has been a success due to time savings in the automatic calculations. These savings which have accrued over the last six months will be used to finance the implementation of the Human Resource Information System.
The following table gives a full account of the deliverables, acceptance criteria and milestone schedules involved in GenRays’ HRIS project:
|Major Deliverables||Acceptance Criteria||Milestone Schedule|
|High-tech computers||The computers should be of high performance; this will include: ||The estimated time frame for the purchase of high-tech computers should take well between two to four months. Since GenRays is a relatively large company, the purchase of computers in all human resource departments should be a slow-but-sure process so as to avoid any mishaps that may come into play. Examples include lack of physical security during storage, accidents and breakages of computer peripherals, theft and so forth.|
|Network connectivity|| ||Installing a Local Area Network is very crucial, thus should take all the time and care there could possibly be. Thus a period of one and a half, to two months, would be appropriate.|
|HR database Software||Kavanagh, Thite and Johnson (2011) in their work state that, “… for any database – related system to work, there must be provision for relevant software that will enable smooth operations in the system.” (p.18). GenRays’ case is not different; there will be pressing need for effective software or program installment in order for the HRIS project to kick-start. The software should enable effective database operations. Examples include spreadsheet applications such as ‘Microsoft Excel’ versions, ‘R’, among others. Such software applications come with in-built, easy to use, formulas that can come in handy especially when handling employee financial data.||Once the computers and LAN are put in place, it would not be a major issue to purchase and install HR database software. Depending on the number of software programs that GenRays would require, the entire process should not take more than a three week period.|
|Redundant Power supply||It is common knowledge that any IT related company system requires effective (sometimes more than enough) power supply so as to ensure uninterrupted system activities; especially in times of processing sensitive employee information. Redundant power supply, therefore, falls in the criteria for HRIS project operations.||The milestone schedule for installation of power supply would be almost in line with that of database software; three to four weeks would be appropriate.|
|Redundant decent generators||GenRays will also need powerful generators that will act as backup in times of total power failure. Thus, yet another essential addition to the criterion.||Since the generators simply need to be purchased and put in place, a two week schedule would do good (just to make sure there are no irregularities with the purchased generators as well as ensure that they are safe for use within a workplace setting).|
|Optimum physical security||Since GenRays will invest in a whole range of high-tech computers and other IT equipment, it is a mandatory the company invests in physical security in terms of alarm systems, burglar proofing in door entrances, windows and the like. It is very important that before the HRIS project embarks, there is an assurance of optimum security of all equipment that will be brought in the scene.||Here, a period of up to a month would be appropriate so as to ensure that all potential ‘entry points’ are well taken care of in case of planned or accidental unauthorized access to the Human Resource Information System.|
|IT Training mechanisms||The HRIS project is heavily IT-laden, thus there is a need to fully train GenRays employees so that they may be ready for the new HR system; training should be both technical as well as theoretical so as employees (particularly the HR team) may be in a better position to understand fully the technicalities that will come along with the new HR system.||Training can take place either in one major event or in a series of the same. In case GenRays wishes to do a one-time training, the time frame would be a day or two (for example one-day workshops, seminars and conferences). The time frame could go for as far as several months if management wishes to have a series of training for staff.|
|Highly skilled human capital||Of course, GenRays needs highly skilled manpower in order to operate the new HRIS. Thus, as stated above, the employees will need to be prepared through thorough training.||The time frame for this would be as stated above since training and development is key when it comes to equipping staff with the required skills.|
|Digitized payroll system||Since the whole point of the HRIS project is to facilitate more effective operations in the HR sector, it would be important to invest in a payroll system that is digitized, other than manual. This will play a big role in ensuring payroll data is accurate and precise since it is easier to detect errors in such a system as compared to when all calculations are done physically by individuals’ after all, man is to error.||This is an area that requires adequate time, especially since the handling of employee financial data is very sensitive. A period of up to three months would be okay; so as to ensure all employee financial data match or add up upon installation of the HRIS.|
Due to the sensitivity of this project and the attention to detail, it would be important if GenRays’ executives were consulted immediately after the purchase and installation of high-tech computers to form a workable internal network (that is, the LAN).
According to Kavanagh, Thite, Johnson (2011), it is essential to involve the relevant authorities required for the approval of any HRIS during the initial stages of the installation; this helps by avoiding taking major steps which could ultimately be denied (p.631). In respect to this, GenRays could seek approval from executives before embarking on the installation of database systems and the successive steps that follow; this way, amendments of the HRIS project could be done in real time, thus avoiding wastage of money, time and labor used during prior erroneous activities.
Needless to say, this project will need the guidance of a talented individual who can be able coordinate efforts for the success of GenRays’ HRIS project; this will be none other than the Project Manager.
Kavanagh, M. J., Thite, M., & Johnson, R. D. (2011). Human resource information systems: Basics, applications, and future directions. New York: SAGE Publications.
Project Management Institute. (2008). A guide to the project management body of knowledge. California: Project Management Institute Publishers.