July HRIS Bulletin

News and reminders

Data Quality

Projects Update

New and updated documents and reports

HRIS User Support

This Month's Deadlines

News and reminders

Planned downtime for essential Oracle database patching – 9 August

We have scheduled a period of downtime for the next set of quarterly patches (fixes) to the Oracle database. This is part of the regular cycle of quarterly patching described in last month’s Bulletin. The downtime will take place on Tuesday 9 August and we are currently awaiting confirmation of detailed timings; our current understanding is that this is most likely to be a period of approximately three hours at the start of the day. We recognise that this is the day before the Payroll deadline; this has been unavoidable on this occasion due to the work schedule of the technical teams involved. As always, we will aim to keep the duration of the downtime to the absolute minimum. Further details will be provided to all users by e-mail as soon as possible.

Check your August increments and approve salary changes

Automatic increments are due to be paid for Support and technical staff from 1 August. Please read the following to ensure that the correct rate of pay is taken forward.

How the process works:

The day before the increment is due a new salary record is automatically created in CorePersonnel.  This salary change does not need to be authorised - it will take effect the next day unless it is overridden.  After the increment has been applied the system will set the next increment due date for one year’s time unless the bar point has been reached.  For the 1 August process therefore, the new row in the appointment record will become visible to users on 31 July 2016.

Action required:

  1. Undertake a data checking exercise of all records to ensure that the increment date is populated where required: The ‘Increment Due Date’ report will help you to identify any staff with no increment due date, records where the ‘increment on hold’ flag has been ticked which will prevent the increment from happening, or those without a future increment date.  You will need to check if any of these records are incorrect and amend/update them if required.  Note that in order for an employee to be eligible for an increment on 1 August 2016 they must have been in their current role since at least 1 May 2016.
  2. Ensure the correct salary is approved prior to the increment date: The system will add one increment (where applicable) to the current approved salary on the day the job runs. This means that any salary requests awaiting approval will not be picked up by the program, including any requests awaiting approval by Payroll.  It is essential therefore, that you ensure that those individuals due an increment on 1 August have the correct salary approved as at 23:59 on 30 July 2016 (i.e. the day before the new salary row is created). You should also ensure that any salary lines with an effective date after 1 August 2016 have been set at the scale point the employee would be on following the automatic increment, as the process will not increase the salary for any future dated salary lines. The ‘Staff in Post’ report (‘full data set’ tab) will show the current salary for staff at the point the report is run and you can also use the ‘Monthly Personnel Changes’ report to check for any future dated salary changes and also to check the approval status for salary requests.

If you have any questions about this, please contact the HRIS Support Centre.

Please complete your R&R UDFs

The Reward team have run the data for this year’s reward and recognition scheme, which shows completion of the UDF by departments. The data shows an improved completion rate of the UDF in comparison to last year and data quality has also improved, so thank you to everyone for your efforts. However, the reports indicate that 21% of departments have only partially completed the UDF and 24% of departments have not completed the UDF at all. The Reward team will be contacting those departments where there is missing or incorrect data over the next couple of weeks.

Recruitment monitoring data for Athena SWAN – RECDEP41

Accurate recruitment monitoring data is critical to the success of a departmental Athena SWAN application and it is the responsibility of departments to ensure that the underlying data on recruitment is accurate and up to date.  The recruitment report RECDEP41_Applicant and Vacancy Detail enables you to analyse applicants by legal sex for recruitment monitoring purposes, as well as tracking your vacancies and applicant statuses.

Don’t forget to update applicant statuses throughout the recruitment process, to reflect the progress of each individual applicant.  At a minimum, you must use the following statuses:

  • Applied (automatically applied by the system)
  • Shortlisted (manually updated by the recruitment administrator)
  • Offer Accepted Personnel (manually updated by the recruitment administrator)

For guidance on updating applicant statuses please refer to REC00 Recruitment Basics (379kb)

Do not complete “Advertising Details” on Staff Requests

Further to our previous article in the December 2015 bulletin, some users are still entering details into the "Advertising Details" section of the staff request form. Due to a bug in the system, this causes the e-mail notification to the Reward Team to be blank, making the task of identifying which staff request the email relates to difficult and time consuming.

CoreHR will fix this issue in a future minor release. In the meantime, please do not complete the advertising details in the staff request. You are still able to enter them into the vacancy. We have updated the quick reference guide RQ1 accordingly.

Recording the correct end date for leavers

When processing an employee as a leaver, please ensure you record the correct end date depending upon their individual circumstances. For example, where a full-time employee has worked (or taken annual leave during) their full working week (Monday – Friday), their leaving date for pay purposes should be recorded as the Sunday at the end of that week. CorePay works on a 7-day working week so it is essential that the correct end date is entered to ensure that the employee is paid correctly. For full details, please refer to the guidance document Recording Start and End Dates in CoreHR (229kb)

New equality data form

We have updated the equality data form that can be generated in CorePersonnel. This form must be completed by all new starters who did not apply via e-Recruitment and would not therefore have provided their equality data as part of their application.

Please note, if you have an open academic vacancy that was not advertised via CoreHR, you must follow the current process for completing forms M1, M2 and M3 and provide the equality data form to the successful applicant.

Recoding miscellaneous pay

Over the last year work has been carried in Personnel Services to investigate payments currently categorised as Miscellaneous.

As a result of this work a number of new allowances have been introduced and miscellaneous pay will be recoded under the new allowances or other existing allowances. The HRIS Data Services team will be carrying out this work starting this week with changes taking effect from 1 August 2016 and appearing in individuals' August payslips. No pay is changing as part of the recoding exercise and not all miscellaneous pay is being recoded.

Divisions and departments do not need to approve the changes, this will be done by the HRIS team. Salary approvers will see the approvals in their salary approval lists but need take no action. You might like to run report PERDEP20 just after the August payroll deadline so that you can see a summary of the allowances changed as a result of the recoding exercise.

Further information on this project, including details of all the new allowances, will be distributed to departments via a Personnel Services circular.

Data Quality

HESA 2015-16 data verification exercise

General validation and research staff categorisations

Throughout August and September the HR Information Team will again be sending out staffing information for verification as part of this year’s HESA (Higher Education Statistics Agency) staff return. If research staff are employed within your area of responsibility then you can expect us to be in touch.

The researcher-related verification exercise relates to all staff with appointments which are recorded as ‘research only’ (Core Category Code = 2). We are now required to confirm to HESA the status of every research contract: for each relevant appointment, we will be asking you to confirm whether or not the member of staff is a research assistant. Using information held in CoreHR, we will provide a provisional coding for you, you then just need to inform us of any changes.

You may remember that this exercise took place last year. We had hoped to incorporate collection of this information into standard Core processes but this has not yet been possible. We hope to be able to implement such a change in the coming 12 months however.

We will provide detailed guidance at the time of the exercise.

HRINFO01_Data Quality Validation report

Please run and clear all anomalies from HRINFO01_Data Quality Validation report by 31 July in preparation for the 2015-16 HESA Staff Return, the Medical Schools Council Survey and Athena SWAN staff data extracts.

The HR Information Team website provides detailed guidance on entering the data items highlighted in the HRINFO01 report.

If you have anomalies that you have already discussed with us, you don’t need to contact us again about those queries. Contact us on hris.dataquality@admin.ox.ac.uk if you have any new queries.

HRINFO02_Athena SWAN Potential Staff Data report

HRINFO02 Athena SWAN Potential Staff Data report is available until 31 July so that departments can review their Athena SWAN 2016 data.  Please run this report and resolve any data issues before 31 July when the extract will be taken from Core.

TIP: It will be beneficial to run and clear all anomalies from your HRINFO01_Data Quality Validation report before reviewing the HRINFO02_AthenaSWAN Potential Staff Data report.

Please check our Athena SWAN pages for updates on data provision and timelines. Contact athena.staffdata@admin.ox.ac.uk with queries.

Projects Update

Improving the casual payment process

Over the past few months, a review of the casual workers payment process has been undertaken with the aim of ensuring an efficient and streamlined process. A number of departments had previously been consulted about issues with the current process and potential solutions. Following a detailed examination of the requirements and options for meeting these, the review has recommended the following key changes to the casual payments process:

  1. Devolve the creation of casual payroll worker records to departments. This will enable the right to work data to be checked/entered directly into CorePersonnel by the employing department before the worker undertakes any work.
  2. Departments to provide all payment information to Payroll using a standard electronic spreadsheet that also enables the capture of hours for casual workers on Tier 4 visas. A similar approach is currently in use within some departments but it is recommended that this be rolled out to all areas.

A project team will take forward the work to implement these recommendations, overseen by a project board comprising representatives from Personnel Services, Payroll, IT Services and departments.

The proposed changes will affect departments in various ways. Over the coming weeks, the project team will be in touch with those departments that have high numbers of casual workers to discuss the plans in more detail and understand the impact and resource implications. If you have specific concerns about the impact this change will have on your department, please e-mail mandy.zaccheo@it.ox.ac.uk to arrange to discuss this.

We will keep you informed of the progress of this project through regular updates in the HRIS Bulletin.

New and updated documents and reports

QRG updates

Significant changes have been made to the guides below, i.e. where there are new/changes to processes and procedures or to provide clarity:

REC03 Managing Online Applications (1,414kb) Added guidance on how to change the day/time on an interview schedule 
RQ1_Creating and approving a staff request (896kb)   Note added regarding not completing the advertising details section.  
RO Read only access to Personnel (1,134kb)   All ‘read only’ guides have been combined into a single guide Guidance added on how to view cost allocations. 

RO1

RO2

RO3

Combined into new QRG RO_Read only.

PERDEP20 Monthly Changes report

The following changes have been made to this report:

PERDEP20 Monthly Changes report 
  • Grade and FTE added to the Leavers tab
  • Job text and job title added to the Starters and Leavers tabs

HRIS User Support

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 

August bank holiday support arrangements

The HRIS Support Centre will be closed on the August Bank Holiday i.e. from 5.00pm on Friday 26 August 2016 until 8.30am on Tuesday 30 August 2016.

This Month's Deadlines

Deadlines for Personnel Users: August Payroll

Please also refer to the August 2016 Payroll Cycle Diagram (14kb)

DATE(S) DEADLINEEXPLANATION 
Thursday 21 July - 6pm July 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 July's payroll run.
Friday 22 to Monday 25 July No user input Two clear working days are required during which users cannot enter data into the personnel module, to enable the payroll to be run (all other modules are unaffected).
Wednesday 3 August Staff Request Deadline For Staff Requests which do not require grading, any requests received by this deadline will be processed by midday on Monday 8 August. 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 5 August Casual Payments Deadline  Details of casual payments must be received by this deadline in order to be included in this month's payroll run.
Monday 8 August 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.
Monday 8 August Support Requests for August 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.
Wednesday 10 August - 6pm August 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.
Monday 22 August August 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.