Automation and HR: How a Custom Intelligent Automation Solution Rescued Businesses from Payroll Chaos

Automation and HR

In December 2021, businesses across the globe experienced a collective shudder when Kronos, a widely used workforce management system, faced a system-wide outage. Among the thousands directly affected were hourly workers who rely on Kronos for logging their timecards. The outage was expected to persist for several weeks, casting a looming shadow over the timely release of paychecks during the festive Christmas season.

The aftermath was chaotic. With Kronos offline, hundreds of managers found themselves in a predicament—they had to manually collect timecards from thousands of hourly workers and then navigate the labyrinth of bureaucratic processes to ensure timely HR approval for paycheck release. The process was not only exhaustive but also posed a considerable risk of delayed payments, leaving many employees anxious as the holidays approached.

It was automation that saved the day as the decision to leverage a custom Intelligent Automation solutionproved to be pivotal. Sai Madhur Potturu, an automation expert and an ‘Automation Anywhere Most Valued Pathfinder’, helped come up with a game-changing PowerApps web applicationcombined with the RPA Developer designed to streamline the entire timecard collection and approval process, ensuring a smooth and efficient workflow even in the absence of Kronos.

The Power Apps web application, developed for and used by hundreds of managers across the organization, proved to be a panacea. Instead of wrestling with thousands of Excel files and timecards, Sai Madhur Potturu made it so, that managers could seamlessly collect timecard data directly through the application. This not only saved an immense amount of time but also eliminated the need for manual data entry, reducing the risk of errors.

The innovation didn’t stop there. The introduction of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) took the efficiency gains to the next level. The data collected through the Power App was seamlessly transferred into HR-Payroll systems after undergoing rigorous validation and verification processes. This automated handoff not only accelerated the payroll processing timeline but also ensured the accuracy and integrity of the data enteredinto the HR system.

It can be said that Mr. Potturu’s unique illustration of the nuances of process automation with ‘Power Apps’ catalyzed the adoption of automation in HR processes across industries.

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The benefits of the extended automation solution were manifold:

Efficiency at Scale: The Power Apps web application was a beacon of efficiency, allowing hundreds of managers scattered across different countries to collect and submit timecard data effortlessly. This not only streamlined the process but also ensured uniformity in data submission.

Reduced Workload on HR: With the automated system in place, the avalanche of Excel files and timecards flooding HR mailboxes became a thing of the past. HR teams could now focus on higher-value tasks, such as strategic workforce planning and employee engagement initiatives, rather than drowning in paperwork.

Timely Payroll Processing: The combined power of the PowerApps web application and RPA ensured not just efficiency but also timeliness in payroll processing, especially during the critical Christmas holidays.

Data Accuracy and Integrity: RPA’s role in validating and verifying data before entering it into HR systems minimized the risk of errors, enhancing the overall accuracy and integrity of HR records.

User-Friendly Interface: The Power Apps web application was designed with user experience in mind, ensuring that managers, regardless of their technical acumen, could navigate the platform effortlessly. This resulted in widespread adoption and acceptance across the organization.

The Kronos case study, augmented by the integration of RPA and Power Apps, serves as a compelling testament to the transformative power of automation in HR processes. As businesses worldwide grapple with the challenges of digital transformation, this success story stands out as a beacon of hope, showcasing how a well-crafted automation solution can not only rescue companies from crises but also pave the way for a more efficient and resilient future.

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