Kronos Workforce Central New Features (Saving the Best for Last)
For those following the Kronos New Feature Series, this will be the last article in the series – THE END! However, comment posting will still be available for the entire series. We talked about new features available to customers upgrading to the most current version of Kronos Workforce Timekeeper. The prior articles covered why an organization might use some of the new Workforce Central (WFC) features and why they should consider upgrading. Simply speaking, what’s in it for us? What is this talk about an “Upgrade Studio”? So let's wipe the dust off that old Kronos version and weigh if the change is worthwhile.
Let’s review some of the prior high points that were discussed in the series. For more detailed information, feel free to peruse the past “New Feature” articles. For day to day use, the “Kronos Cloud” (in one place concept) is one of my personal favorites. This concept applies mainly to WIM (Workforce Integration Manager), and WDM (Workforce Device Manager). It is very similar to when the BGP (Background Processor) became part of the product in WFC version 5. Can you say: "No more separate service packs?" :)
Some Benefits Inherent to Upgrading to Kronos Workforce Central version 6.3:
- Manager friendly timecard features and functions (additional fields, resolve exceptions)
- Flexible security settings (self-service user password maintenace)
- Improved WDM (new InTouch device support and new device notifications)
- Improved performance (support for 64-bit application servers)
- Reduced maintenance (fewer products = less service packs to apply)
- Cumulative changes with service packs (product fixes and enhacements with upgrade)
- Tighter integration (Connect and Device Manager now part of WFC!)
In closing… a couple of disclaimers on these new features in Workforce Timekeeper version 6.3:
- Not every “new” feature was reviewed
- Not everyone upgrades solely based on new features
Let me explain. Some organizations upgrade for compliance reasons alone. Others see a great deal of value in the new features of the most current version. Some new features work for an organization, some don’t. It’s easy to pick the favorite features that you think will positively affect your organization, without covering every single one. A good example is Overtime Equalization (OT EQ). OT EQ is new with WFC 6.2, but a lot of organizations process OT EQ in their payroll system. It this is the case, this feature doesn’t provide much value, so why upgrade based on just that one feature? There may be more popular WFC features that drive the decision to upgrade.
What is a good way to get the Kronos upgrade conversation started? After all, some features are very useful, and some may be useful, but not in an obvious way. One organization I worked with actually listed the new features, provided a brief explanation of the features and sent a survey to their Kronos managers, asking them which features seemed most useful. The decision makers for these upgrades are commonly suprised by the results of these types of surveys. Managers found great value in the upgraded Comments and Notes feature introduced with version 6.0 and above. This feature was mentioned in another article “New Timecard Features”.
Many HR representatives didn't realize how much their Kronos Managers wanted a new feature allowing them to free form type information! Now that more customers are looking to WFC to help with attendance and audit tracking? Those HR representatives are seeing the benefits for themselves.
There can be other factors to consider in an upgrade. This could include device (time clock) compatibility; identifying any custom reports that may need to be rewritten and training. This is the time to assess how much change is coming with a new version of WFC. What learning needs to take place, and who should be involved? What improvements could be made to Kronos? Slow performance? Don’t forget the underlying Oracle or Microsoft SQL Server database! You may need to transition to a later database version, but you may not! Interfaces may need to be upgraded and payroll totals verified between the 2 systems. This may even involve building a test system for the upgrade. We can help you answer these questions, and assess your needs. Let us give you the power to make the BEST decision for your organization. We’d love to hear from you. Like leaving the theatre, let’s talk about the movie (New Features). Add a comment and let us know what you think.