When it comes to HR and payroll software, researching who will implement your software may be more important than the software you choose. Human Resources Managers and staff go through a large number of efforts to find and select the Human Resources Information Systems (HRIS) that best meet their needs. The problem is that they rarely apply sufficient effort to choose who will implement the software. In any profession there are people with experience and those who don’t, and there are people who are good at their jobs and those who don’t.It is very important that you put in the same effort to choose who will handle the implementation you implement to select your HRIS application.
Apply the following steps to ensure you receive the best HRIS implementation:
Find out exactly who will do the HR software installation and what their background is. How many installations have they done? I wouldn’t recommend using anyone who hasn’t done at least 10 HRIS installations of your choosing. Sure they may be certified on your HR system, but until they have done a large number of installations they will not be able to handle all the pitfalls and problems that inevitably arise. It’s also a good idea to ask for a reference about the individual who will be working on your HRIS project, just as you’ll be asking for a reference about an HRIS software product before purchasing it.
Now that you have verified that the implementation consultant and/or staff are qualified to handle the work, you need to make sure that both parties are in full agreement on what is included in the scope of the project. Avoidable misconceptions about the expectation of creating cost overruns and can lead to poor implementation. Make sure everything is in writing, and when I say that everything should be in writing I specifically mean that you should be given a detailed list of project requirements and estimated completion times for each. Most companies will provide a low and expected high range (“two to three months”, for example).
HRIS project costs versus hourly or daily.
Project implementations are usually cited either daily or by the project. Project costs have some advantages, because you know most likely you won’t exceed the quoted amount unless a need arises that is outside the original scope of the project. The disadvantage of project costs is that the company will charge you a higher rate because they have to quote the project on the high side. Daily or hourly quotes for consultation are fine, but be sure to get a detailed plan on consultation time. In the past I have broken down the clock according to each step in the implementation process: Half a day for network installation, one day for setting up a code table, one day for benefit settings, etc.
Get ready for your HRIS implementation!
In almost every case where a project I’m on goes over budget, clients are at least partly to blame. I understand that it is a very strong statement and it is meant to be so. Before you start the implementation, make sure all the information and data that the consulting staff needs is ready to go. There’s nothing worse than a $150 an hour consultant doing nothing while waiting for data on a benefits plan. It becomes such a problem in the company I work for that we will not schedule implementation until all the necessary data and information for implementation is received. Also make sure that whoever the consultant or implementation team will work with is available during the process (IT staff especially – make sure they know when their services will be needed). If you have to close the department or limit the hours to access HR, do so. We sometimes do training on Saturdays to avoid interruptions; see if similar settings are an option for your organization.
Stay on track.
As the implementation of the HRIS system is underway customers are learning more and more about their new HR software capabilities. Make sure you are not off track with work that is outside the scope of the project.