The discovery, planning and organizing stages are critical to produce a clear definition of requirements and needs and to ensure a workable employee scheduling and timekeeping solution.
A needs analysis is a process used to determine the gap between “what is” and “what should be”. The “Need” is the gap between what “should be” and “what is.” The purpose is to determine if there is a gap in performance, determine factors that cause the gap, and identify possible solutions. The following activities are of importance here:
The first important step in the process that must be undertaken is to study how the organization operates. Aspects that must investigated include employee scheduling, leave management and timekeeping’s role within the overall business operation. Questions that can be asked here are:
It is also important to make sure the right staff should be in place and operating effectively. A good team can use a new or improved workforce management system to support company goals and provide better services to its clients.
The next step is to form a project team. This team will guide the project throughout its life cycle. It is important to note that the HR department should control the project and that some functional HR specialists should be on the team.
A crucial issue in the process is the determination of the automation needs. This process can take place through interviews, surveys, and document reviews. The here is to identify and prioritize the needs. This helps to ensure that the system does what you want it to do and helps avoid the tendency to computerize everything.
Although detailed specifications are drawn up during the design and development phase (phase 2), an initial systems specification specifying the desired outputs, inputs and processing requirements must be made available to the team at this stage. One method that is frequently used for this purpose is a data flow diagram. This diagram gives an indication of how data will flow to, from and within the system.
It is important to consider implementing reports that will be able to monitors the system.
The steps taken above will culminate in the development of a request for proposal (RFP) document This document tells vendors what the company needs and asks them to submit proposals regarding how they can meet those needs and at what cost.
The workforce management solutions offered by outside vendors must be carefully examined to identify what each package has to offer. This process should involve each system’s documentation, after-sales service, and possible future expansion of the package.
Based on the evaluation of the proposals submitted, a vendor is selected. It is important that the company not change the vendor at a later stage as this can give rise to many problems.
Before the money for the workforce management system is made available, a proposal must be submitted to management. The proposal should include and indication of costs and other necessary resources in comparison with the potential benefits expected to be derived from the system.
During the last stage of phase 1, the inefficiencies identified in the previous steps must be rectified before the system can be implemented. This can take place through tactical activities, for example, improving the information flow to reduce data redundancy.
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