As Kronos continues to revolutionize their Workforce Central application, newer versions are starting to be released more frequently. The long awaited, completely Java-free WFC 8.0.11 was released just last week. Organizations are being forced to consider upgrading as the new upgrades put older versions in risk of “Sunsetting.”
Sunsetting: The Sunset Factor refers to the age of your Kronos Workforce Central version. The older the age of your version, the higher the risk of limited technical support. The longer the upgrade is delayed, the more the potential grows for complications from workarounds associated with supporting outdated versions. In some cases, vendor support will even end, and a concrete “point of no return” sunset date will be set.
If your Kronos application remains at a sunsetting version and encounters a serious complication, there may be no vendor to work with the outdated system, leaving your organization exposed.
Kronos is now only servicing two versions behind the most current version, meaning anyone operating with a version older than 6.3 is at risk of losing support.
However, making the jump from an older version to Workforce Central Version 8.0 can be quite the endeavor. The question becomes how to best upgrade from version 5.2-6.2 to Version 8.0. There is an upgrade path available for organizations needing to move from Version 5-6 to Version 8.0. However, creating a direct upgrade path from version 5.2 or 6 may not be the best option for your organization. Here are a few key considerations when making the decision to upgrade from Kronos Version 5.2-6.2 to Version 8.0.
Before any decisions are made, the first step should be an Implementation Audit.
When an organization is two major versions behind, it is crucial to understand how accurate the current configuration is before making the decision to upgrade. When an audit is conducted it will answer the question: How much change has occurred since the original install?
Over time, an organization’s Kronos configuration can become inaccurate, causing issues such as overpaid employees, mishandled bargaining agreements, etc. An Implementation Audit has a very high ROI because it discovers inaccuracies in the configuration that cause issues such as over payment.
Any change that has occurred since the original install will make the upgrade process more complicated. Changes to the system could include: policy changes, union changes, acquisitions, mergers, configurations by different people, new payrolls, bargaining agreements, custom reporting, etc. The more change that has occurred, the more risk that your system is out of compliance.
After an Implementation Audit is conducted there are two upgrade plans that an organization can choose from.
Minimal Changes Necessary:
If your organizations’ Implementation Audit revealed that the current installation is solid, requiring minimal changes, then creating an upgrade path should be relatively simple. A system’s configuration should be 80% accurate for it to be considered solid or non-complex. The best way to move forward with an upgrade would be to complete the Kronos recommended installation and upgrade process from whatever version you are on to Version 8.0. Once you have upgraded the software, the system should be thoroughly tested.
Drastic Changes Necessary:
If your organizations’ Implementation Audit shows less than 80% accuracy with your configuration, creating an upgrade path may prove to be time-consuming, complicated, and costly. However, there is an option available that can simplify the upgrade process.
Starting fresh can be the ideal plan of attack when upgrading from an older version.
Organizations should complete a Discovery Requirements Analogy and Redesign using the current process procedures, union agreements, etc. A fresh implementation will often be less expensive, less time intensive, and more accurate then attempting to plan a complex upgrade path for an outdated version.
When making the decision of whether to start fresh or create an upgrade path, it is crucial that the biggest consideration is how much change has occurred since the initial implementation and the findings of the Implementation Audit. The more inaccuracies in the interfaces and configuration, the more reasons for your organization to seriously consider a fresh start. An upgrade should be handled like an implementation: a full Discovery Requirements Analogy process should be completed followed by the development of an implementation strategy. Strategically planning for your Kronos upgrade will allow you to get the highest ROI and user-adoption from your Kronos application.