How the National Museum of Australia is fulfilling its wish-list
- 21 September, 2006 10:24
<p>Since the National Museum of Australia installed a new human resources and information system (HRIS), a process that took a up to working day to complete now takes less than 40 seconds, while payroll processing is 50% to 100% faster.</p>
<p>Before implementing the Aurion HRIS in September 2005, the Museum suffered a high HR staff turnover, wrestled with cumbersome payroll processes, needed to comply with stricter Audit recommendations, and had to handle paper-based forms “a mile high”, according to Lisa Wilmot, Director Employee Relations and People Development.</p>
<p>Lisa says the Aurion solution has helped staff to solve these problems, and achieve more benefits than expected…</p>
<p>The Museum’s HR people call their new system Quartz. The project to select new technology began with a wish list, for a system that would allow HR staff to:</p>
<p>* Keep pace with better HR practice and increasingly complex workplace legislation.
* Interface better with systems – both the Museum’s and other agencies’.
* Streamline and eliminate many cumbersome, inefficient and time-consuming manual processes.
* Free the HR team from mundane manual processing so they can focus on more value-adding services to clients.
* Make work more attractive for HR team members, helping to reduce traditionally high staff turnover.
* Address several audit recommendations around control processes, system functionality and better practice.</p>
<p>“Our pre-evaluation wish-list has been mostly fulfilled by Aurion, which has also delivered unexpected benefits,” says Lisa Wilmot. “We had to adapt some processes and procedures, and also requested changes to the system, but overall it’s actually done more than we sought.”</p>
<p>Examples of unexpected benefits include more detailed information for reporting, and the ability to check pay for rostered staff (about a quarter of the work force) before it is processed.</p>
<p>Faster data processing overall was expected, but often this has exceeded expectations. The payroll run for the Museum’s 300 staff previously took two days: now it takes between half a day and a full day.</p>
<p>Before Quartz, it took up to a day to find out an employee’s available leave balance, plus 30 minutes to locate an application form, two minutes to complete the form and 30 seconds to submit it to a supervisor’s in-tray. Approval took between 30 seconds and five days, the HR took two days to process the leave.</p>
<p>Now, the whole process takes less than 40 seconds: 1.5 seconds to click the Quartz icon, 5 seconds to log-in, 2 seconds to access leave information, 10 seconds to apply for leave, supervisory approval from 30 seconds, submitting to HR is instantaneous, and so is leave-processing, which is automated.</p>
<p>Lisa Wilmot says her team have not quantified any other processes, but the more efficient leave applications are not untypical of the HR Department’s efficiencies and productivity gains.</p>
<p>The Museum also saves staff time and money when the system checks yearly salary advancement or increment advancements. Before Aurion, HR would have a team of staff working at weekends to process this, hence the new system yields overtime savings in this area.</p>
<p>Another plus is Aurion’s self-service functionality, which allows staff for the first time to amend and view personal details online for checking pay slips, receive pay slips automatically via the system, apply for leave online, make changes to bank accounts details online, have performance appraisals processed online too, and enter their own personal development plans.</p>
<p>“We have tried to make Aurion a one-stop-shop by using the system as a central hub for links to information on the Museum’s administrative system,” says Lisa Wilmot.</p>
<p>Overall, the efficiencies introduced by Aurion are making life easier for the Museum’s HR staff. “There had been a desperate need to free them from the daily grind of processing,” said Lisa. “The Quartz project is certainly helping us achieve this goal. HR staff turnover has been decreasing since 2003 and I believe that getting our house in order, which included the move to Aurion, has helped the overall improvement. We’re not stopping here though. Over the next year we’re rolling out other Aurion functionality including web-recruitment, OH&S incident reporting and Timekeeper for better roster management processes.”</p>
<p>As part of the Quartz project, the Museum developed and implemented broad-reaching changes to its business processes, to align with the new Aurion system.</p>
<p>The Quartz roll-out was helped by an innovation created in-house: an electronic education system integrated with Aurion to help teach HR staff how to use the system.</p>
<p>The Quartz Implementation Team Leader, Maciej Dunski, says: “The online system is a big help in guiding staff who do not use a particular process regularly, and has saved a great deal of initial training time. Some staff have used it and decided they don’t need any more formal training, so it’s an excellent productivity tool which is always on hand for new staff, and for re-training after system updates.”</p>
<p>Maciej says the Museum received some help from Aurion in developing the Quartz education system’s look and feel. “Aurion’s adaptability has allowed us to create bright and colourful interesting screen design that users find very attractive.”</p>
<p>Lisa Wilmot adds: “Aurion’s consultancy services delivered quality training and support at the most important times and showed understanding of the anxieties associated with the Museum’s transition process. The system itself contains comprehensive features and is user friendly. With Aurion’s advice and help, the Museum was able to integrate its new HRIS seamlessly into its normal business processes without imposing undue work on the end-users.”</p>
<p>About the National Museum of Australia</p>
<p>Based in Canberra, the National Museum of Australia is a major tourist attraction that explores the land, nation and people of Australia with state-of-the art technology. Since opening in March 2001, the Museum has hosted more than four and a half million visitors. The Museum building, on the capital city’s Action Peninsula, is anti-monumental, controversial and unique. Its architecture is characterised by vivid colours, unexpected angle and textures that are not seen in any other Australian national building. Braille messages more than one metre high on the external walls welcome visitors with the universal Aussie greeting, ‘G’day mate’. An atypical Commonwealth public sector agency, it is open to the public 364 days a year requiring around one quarter of its staff working a 7 day week roster.</p>
<p>Aurion Corporation is a leading provider of HRMS solutions in Australia, with a track record of innovation since its beginnings in 1985. It was the first company to deliver a HR Self Service system in Australia and one of the first globally. Its performance measure is that all Aurion implementations are successful.</p>
<p>Aurion is wholly Australian owned. Queensland Government is the majority shareholder with Business Management Limited (BML) and the Aurion founders (the original development team remain as shareholders) holding the remaining equity.</p>
<p>Aurion’s hundreds of Australian clients include News Ltd., Boeing, John Fairfax, Thiess and many state, local and federal government agencies.</p>
<p>For more information</p>
<p>Paul MacRae, Aurion Corporation Tel: (07) 3368 9630 or +61 400 826080</p>
<p>Lisa Wilmot, National Museum of Australia Tel: (02) 6208 5156</p>
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