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Manufacturer - Growth through Merger
Food manufacturer of candy, cookies and crackers with 1000 employees.
This manufacturer had acquired a competitor with several new plants that had to
be integrated under a single centralized payroll umbrella. In addition, the manufacturer
paid employees in almost every province. Each jurisdiction had different payroll
rules and each plant had different union groups with separately negotiated pay and
benefit packages. By late 2000, it had become a struggle to handle and integrate
all of the complexities of the various systems. To add to the frustration, the manufacturer's
home grown payroll system could not handle the job and had become too expensive
to maintain. The payroll department needed an easier more functional system to use,
and the company needed to streamline operations and cut costs.
The payroll department did a formal search for a HR/Payroll solution. The debate
at the time was whether they outsource the payroll to ADP or Ceridian or continue
to run inhouse payroll. As the payroll department still wanted complete control
of their data, they decided to continue to run in-house. Of the in-house systems
they looked at, they felt StarGarden was most able to handle all the complexities
in the most cost effective way. Once initial installation and assessment was complete,
StarGarden consultants set to work deciphering the contracts and pay and benefit
obligations of the manufacturer at each of their plants.
StarGarden consultants decided that the best approach was to work with one plant
at a time by mapping out all their rules and calculations into predefined templates.
This method would save setup time in the long run and allow for solid preliminary
testing. One at a time, the plants would be loaded into the central payroll system
and tested. They took the most difficult group first to ensure they would cover
the complexities up front. The process was not without its stresses. At one site,
the HR manager decided to retire because of the amount of change in the system.
In order to capture her knowledge before she left, StarGarden involved this manager
and her clerks in all the planning meetings. It was crucial that the knowledge that
she carried with her be reflected in the system rules and setup tables.
StarGarden was able to build a set of pay and benefit templates to help staff to
migrate from what they used to do to what they would in the StarGarden system. In
a standard implementation, parallel pay runs are crucial for testing purposes. Because
the data was coming from a variety of sources, StarGarden had to utilize the pay
and benefit calculation templates it created as well as the payroll registers to
reconcile and balance the results. The Payroll team was able to learn while testing
and payroll procedures were streamlined saving valuable time. Senior managers now
had all of the payroll information in one system and were able to get a complete
picture of payroll costs. Implementation of base functionality occurred quickly
and the manufacturer was live with their system within 3 months