HRMS Reports: Looking Back to the Dark Ages

Do you work in a global organization? Do you remember the days when ‘one global HRMS’ was a new concept, and instead the operational HR world was a patchwork mixture of local HR and payroll systems? Forgetting our current world of integrated HRMS analytics and manager dashboards, let’s take a short walk down memory lane to look at how far HRMS reports have come in the past 20 plus years...

Prior to the advent of global HRMS systems, most of us worked in HRMS departments where we had the opportunity to chase and compile data on a monthly basis. A standing joke for many of us was: How long to get a global headcount? And the answer was, approximately 30 days, but it may be outdated by the time we get all the details. Granted, without global systems where we could directly report on the data, it was the best most of us could do to be able to get the relevant HR reports and data needed for business decisions.

How things have changed! Global systems are not only for the big companies, there are many vendors in the HRMS market offering systems to suit the business requirements of any company. Data security needs can be catered for and reporting teams are often global and assembling bigger and better HRMS reports, combining HR data with financial data, for example, and pushing out HR data to decision makers.

Tip: Always review HRMS reports yearly, to ensure the original purpose still exists.

Finally, a story to explain the tip, based on an experience 15 years ago. One of my fellow consultants was assigned to an HRMS implementation, at a large Catholic hospital network in California. She was required to gather current HRMS reports for analysis, to establish if they were needed in the future and to define functional specs.

One particular report was received by over 15 HR employees, however, none of them used it. It was almost an inch of paper with detailed statistical data, so one wanted to discard it since it looked important. Instead, they filed it away each month. The consultant could not get sign-off to not build it until the original purpose was found. Turns out, a doctoral candidate was doing a rotation at the hospital and the report was part of her thesis work. Sister Mary Francis’ legacy reminds us to understand the purpose of all HRMS reports - just because we can to it a lot faster these days doesn’t mean that we need to or should.

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Heather Batyski

About the author…

Heather is an experienced HRMS analyst, consultant and manager. Having worked for companies such as Deloitte, Franklin Templeton and Oracle, Heather has first-hand experience of many HRMS solutions including Peoplesoft and Workday.

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Heather Batyski