Digital Transformation does not always happen in a big bang. Nor does it always fundamentally change a business. It can sometimes be iterative, as is the case at UHY Advisors a professional services firm of CPAs in in the US. UHY is one of the top twenty US accounting firms. It transformed its internal paper processes through the implementation of Ultimate Software UltiPro Employee File Management. Ultimate only recently announced this transformation but it was completed in October 2017.
UHY adopted UltiPro HCM in 2007 to help manage its growing employee base. Today the company has hundreds of employees located in 18 offices across 10 U.S. states. For the first ten years of using UltiPro it still maintained paper based systems with three filing centres. If information about an employee was required it was scanned and emailed to head offices. Within a few days it was therefore potentially out of date. If the file was large it was mailed in its entirety. This carried the risk of it being mislaid, damaged, or at least unavailable for several days.
Transforming the business prompted change
Around this time UHY was also centralising its processes and starting to operate shared services. It realised that its current methods were inefficient. It turned to Ultimate and looked at how it could improve its processes, selecting Ultimate Software UltiPro Employee File Management. The advantages it delivers are five fold.
- Easily store and secure all employee files in one, central location.
- Create dynamic, logic-based documents based on templates and automatically pull in the required data, policies, etc.
- Automatically route documents to the appropriate people for review.
- Maintain an audit trail that tracks actions performed on a document, such as sharing, downloading, and deleting.
- Enable employees to securely access documents, as well as sign time-sensitive documents with electronic signature.
Jeff Cunningham, director of information systems at UHY commented: “UltiPro works alongside Employee File Management to advance our vision of a shared-services organization. Activating direct access for employees in UltiPro gave them the ability to update forms such as their direct deposit and tax withholding. As a result, we lifted part of the burden of data entry and managing paper from local HR team members and began a process of spreading the workload around our entire system.
“With Employee File Management, HR team members based anywhere can digitize files and add them to the solution, and easily collaborate on the documents that are inside. These two solutions have helped make for a more national, cohesive HR team.”
Making a difference
Having gone live in October 2017, the system has made a significant difference over the last 18 months. It has helped to deliver greater self service functionality. This has reduced the burden on the central HR team and removed much of the paper from the process. Employees are able to access information in a secure manner 24 hours a day. It has reduced its physical storage costs significantly. To the point where the regional filing hubs no longer exist for HR information. It has also improved compliance.
Cunningham explained further saying: “Employee File Management makes it much easier for us to share documents with external third parties securely. In the accounting industry, we must go through a peer-review audit process to ensure that we have the appropriate accounting standards internally and for our clients, which also includes the review of HR records. With Employee File Management, we can share the appropriate number of files with external auditors, through minimal time and effort.”
The solution is seamlessly integration with the UltiPro HCM product and UHY found it simple to implement. Cunningham added: “Employee File Management is the easiest HR solution I’ve launched. The Ultimate launch team needs about a week to configure the environment for a new customer. From there, it’s easy to set up and easy to use. Minimal training was required on my part for my team to be successful with the solution. In addition, the customer service around Employee File Management is among the best I’ve ever worked with.
“I have access to my Customer Success Manager whenever I need him, without having to put in a help ticket and wait for a reply. I’m able to run things by him during our weekly meeting or shoot him an email, and I know I’ll get a response quickly. Employee File Management is a great solution and we’re extremely satisfied with it.”
Enterprise Times: What does this mean
While it is often frustrating to hear about product successes that are several months, even years old they still have value. This demonstrates that companies need to reinvest in systems that they have bought. Not just in new modules as at UHY but also in the enhancements that vendors release in the latest versions.
Cloud software vendors improve functionality regularly. Therefore, it is important that companies set aside resources to constantly improve implementations. If they don’t then dissatisfaction grows and change can become a major project. In this instance UHY identified a specific need and its partner, Ultimate had a solution that could assist.
Chris Phenicie, chief sales officer, mid-market and strategic, at Ultimate commented: “Ultimate’s suite of solutions enables HR departments to establish best practices and boost operational efficiency. We are pleased to see UHY leverage UltiPro and Employee File Management to more effectively manage its human capital transactions, achieve cost and time savings, and position the business for future growth.”