April HRIS Bulletin

Important - for action/attention this month:

Conditional offer letter updated – research passport clause



How to...?

Projects Update

HRIS User Support

This Month's Deadlines


Conditional offer letter updated – research passport clause

The conditional offer letter template has been updated to correct the name of the NHS trust in the clause relating to research passports. If your department requires some employees to hold a research passport you will need to update the relevant clause in the offer letter by following the steps detailed below:

  1. Locate and open the document: C:\Coreapps\PERS_CondOfferStd_v2.doc (note – you will need to click “Yes” and “OK” respectively to the two messages that appear when you open the document).
  2. Click on CTRL+A to select all the text. With the text highlighted, right click and select “Toggle Field Codes”.  This will show all the coding within the document text.
  3. Click on CTRL+F to bring up the “Find” search box. Type in “research” and locate the following paragraph: “This work will require you to hold a research passport from the Oxford Radcliffe Hospitals Trust. We will assist you with the application process for this once the other pre-employment checks have been completed”.
  4. Change the reference to “Oxford Radcliffe Hospitals Trust” to “Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust”.
  5. Ensure that the formatting (font, font size, alignment etc.) of the new text is consistent with the rest of the paragraph.
  6. Save the updated document in the same location and with the same filename as the previous version – i.e. overwrite the old version.
  7. Ensure that the above steps are carried out for each user’s version of the document.

For ease and speed of updating, we have not amended the version number of the document within Core on this occasion. Therefore you can use the updated version immediately by selecting the same option (Conditional Offer 1) on the Letters menu within the Appointment screen (PER620) as usual.

If you have any queries regarding this, or encounter any difficulties when making the change, please e-mail the HRIS Support Centre.

Salary scales updated

The salary scales on the Payroll website were updated on Friday 4th April to reflect changes to the National Insurance thresholds effective from Sunday 6th April 2014.

Pilot of Temporary Staffing Service – new reference data in Core

The University is about to launch a pilot of a new service to supply temporary workers to departments. The service will be registering potential workers via CoreRecruitment and paying workers for assignments via CorePersonnel. To facilitate these processes the following new reference data has been set up in the system:  a new competition type; a new job title; an optional question category on the application form; six new applicant statuses, two new recruitment e-mail templates; four new pay elements.

All new data items are clearly identifiable as specific to the Temporary Staffing Service, either because they have the service name in the title, or they are prefixed by the initials x-TSS (the X ensures that they appear at the bottom of any lists of values).  Please avoid using these items which have been specifically created for the Temporary Staffing Service processes.

The service is expected to be made available more widely later this year. Further information for candidates and departments is available on the Temporary Staffing Service web pages.


Equality monitoring for Direct Appointments: message from the Equality and Diversity Unit

If you have made a direct appointment or recruited a new member of staff via the non-CoreHR process e.g. academic appointments, please remember to ask your new member of staff to complete a Staff Starter form, available in Core or from the EDU website.

The information captured will form the basis of the individual's staff record. The University has an obligation to report on staff in post data for HESA, Athena SWAN (all MPLS and MSD departments), Gender Charter Mark (Humanities and Social Sciences) and under the Equality Act 2010.

When are you approving pay changes?

As detailed in the Bulletin last December, we have noticed that most Departmental Approvers are not processing their salary approvals until the day of the Payroll deadline, even where the change has been actioned in Core by the Personnel Administrator much earlier in the payroll period. This results in a sudden last minute influx of work for Payroll to deal with after this deadline and we are struggling to process this within the time available.

If salary changes could be approved earlier in the month where possible, this provides more time for Payroll to query anomalies and for departments to make corrections where these are required.

How to...?

Record cost allocations on timesheets

When sending temporary input to payroll (e.g. overtime sheets) please ensure that you use the ‘Core’ version of the Project and not the ‘R12’ version. Payroll is not able to convert R12 cost allocations and so will have to use the GL default recorded on the appointment screen if they are not given the correct format.

If you are unsure of the correct format please refer to the Projects section of the Recording Cost Allocations guide.  The ‘Core’ version is recorded in the ‘Project Code’ field, which you can see has 8 characters dot 4 characters, e.g. CDRPML00.0001 and the R12 version is displayed in the ‘Description’ field, e.g. CDRPML00.AX00.1.

Move an employee to a non-employee appointment

If an individual is moving from an employee appointment to a non-employee appointment (e.g. moving from a University contract to an agency role with the University) they should be processed as a leaver and then rehired. This will ensure that a P45 is generated and send leaving details to HMRC through Real Time Information (RTI).  They must NOT be processed as a transfer.

Projects Update

Update on the HRIS Service Recovery project

In our March edition of the HRIS Bulletin we included an item on the HRIS Service Recovery project.  The objective of this project was to ensure that the technical and support arrangements were in place to manage a failure of service and to perform the subsequent failover of an effective HRIS system within an acceptable timeframe.  In preparation for this a testing environment was built, in collaboration between Core and IT Services, to secure an understanding of the HRIS technical topology and the procedures required to configure an individual environment.  This collaborative work was reported to be extremely useful by both parties in documenting their understanding of the procedures and their roles in supporting HRIS. During the course of this work however, it became apparent that to achieve a standard set-up across all of the HRIS environments would constitute a far larger project than was originally envisaged.

Due to the technical complexities, the impact on the live and supporting environments and the additional work identified beyond the original scope, the decision has been taken to suspend the HRIS Service Recovery Project. The Project Board decided that the additional time, resource and budget required would have outweighed the benefits that would have been achieved, particularly since these benefits would have been short lived due to a new technical topology being introduced as part of the Core Upgrade Project soon to begin.

To ensure the HRIS service still has resilience to recover in the event of an outage, alternative tasks are being completed including development of improved documentation on the current infrastructure and engaging with Core to agree the level of service required for them to support IT Services in the event of a service outage.  In addition, a wider IT Services Disaster Recovery project has been approved to review and address arrangements for a range of systems and HRIS will factor in that project.

HRIS User Support

Review of enhancements log

At the last meeting of the HRIS User Group a discussion took place on the approach for managing enhancement requests submitted by users. It was agreed that a list of all current outstanding enhancement requests received from departmental users since the system went live would be circulated to the User Group for review. Representatives were asked to then review the list with colleagues in their division and to submit any comments or additions to the list by 25 April.

At the next meeting of the User Group (21 May), the HRIS team will present the plans for addressing each of these points i.e. whether they will be improved via the upgrade, or alternatively by local process review or potentially not at all.  A summary of what is agreed will be published on the Using HRIS webpages and communicated via the Bulletin.

If you would like the opportunity to review the enhancements list, and/or provide any comments or feedback, please contact your User Group representative as soon as possible.

Reminder: Easter closure arrangements

As detailed in last month’s Bulletin, the HRIS Support Centre will be closed from 5.00 p.m. on Thursday 17th April 2014 until 8.30 a.m. on Tuesday 22nd April 2014.

Support for applicants

A message will be placed on the University’s Jobs & Vacancies webpages advising applicants of the office closure over the Easter period with the dates as above. Please be aware that behind the scenes, the support team will be monitoring the use and availability of the online recruitment system.  

Staff requests and adverts

Please note that Personnel Services will be closed from 5pm on Wednesday 16th April 2014 until Tuesday 22nd April 2014. No staff requests or adverts will be processed after 1pm on Wednesday 16th April.

HRIS Support Centre

Contact details for the team are:  hr.systems@admin.ox.ac.uk or tel: 01865 (2)87900.

Opening hours: Monday - Friday, 8.30 - 17.00 

This Month's Deadlines

Deadlines for Personnel Users: May Payroll

Please also refer to the May 2014 Payroll Cycle Diagram (14kb)

Tuesday 22 April – 6pm April Supplementary Payroll Deadline Any changes which affect payroll but do not require payroll action/ approval, must be entered and approved within the department by this deadline in order to be included in April payroll run.
Wednesday 23 and Thursday 24 April No user input Two clear working days are required during which users cannot enter data, to enable the payroll to be run (reporting, e-Rec and Staff Requests are unaffected).
Friday 2 May Staff Request Deadline For Staff Requests which do not require grading, any requests received by this deadline will be processed by midday on Wednesday 7 May. Staff Requests received after this deadline are not guaranteed to be processed by the standard payroll deadline. The usual turnaround timings for gradings apply (ten working days).
Friday 2 May Casual Payments Deadline  Details of casual payments must be received by this deadline in order to be included in this month's payroll run.
Wednesday 7 May HRIS Data Services users only: Data Services Admin Deadline Data Services payroll forms should be submitted to the HRIS Data Services team by this deadline.  This is to ensure sufficient time for the team to process them for the payroll deadline and resolve any queries.
Wednesday 7 May Support Requests for May Requests for assistance associated with actions for this month's payroll deadline should be received by the HRIS Support Centre by this date. This is to ensure that sufficient time is available for the team to address your queries.
Friday 9 May – 6pm May Payroll Deadline All changes which require payroll action/approval must be entered and approved within the department by this deadline in order to be included in this month's payroll run.
Wednesday 21 May – 6pm May Supplementary Payroll Deadline Any changes which affect payroll, but do not require payroll action/ approval, must be entered and approved within the department by this deadline in order to be included in this month's payroll run.