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(2009-2010 HR#7) Pandemic Planning – Absence Tracking in HRIS Implementation

Date:
August 26, 2009
To:
Chief Administrative Officers; Business Officers; HRIS Users; Divisional HR Offices
From:
Angela Hildyard, Vice-President, Human Resources and Equity
Re:
Pandemic Planning – Absence Tracking in HRIS Implementation

Some of you may have received my memo of August 19, 2009 (HR#6, Pandemic Planning – Absence Tracking in HRIS), which asked for division heads’ support to establish a regular, ongoing and timely practice of recording all absence information in HRIS for all appointed staff, no later than mid September 2009.

As noted in that memo, in anticipation of a widespread H1N1 influenza this coming fall and winter, it is particularly important to maintain absence information in HRIS to ensure that managers have access to timely and reliable information. It will facilitate the reallocation of staff to essential services within divisions, and as well, enable departments and divisions to generate absence data reports to monitor absences and to support operational planning and decisions. It will also enable the generation of University-wide absence data that would be of importance to the University administration in making decisions regarding the status of activities at the University during a pandemic.

As a follow-up to that memo, I am writing to provide you with additional details on processing absence information in HRIS and about the resources available to assist you.

Recording Absences for All Appointed Staff

Departments and Divisions are asked to record absence information in HRIS for the following employee groups:

  • Professionals/Managers
  • Confidentials
  • USW Local 1998 – Appointed (including ESL Instructors)
  • Research Officers and Associates at OISE/UT (OPSEU Local 578)
  • Child Care Workers (CUPE Local 2484)
  • Library Workers (full-time) (CUPE 1230 F/T)
  • Library Workers (part-time) (CUPE 1230 P/T)

For other appointed unionized employee groups that are paid on a bi-weekly basis, departments and divisions will continue to maintain attendance and absence information in HRIS via Time Management.

Types of Absence Information to be Maintained

The current priority is for departments and divisions to establish a practice of maintaining absence information for appointed staff, specifically sick days, in HRIS. However, the ultimate objective is for all absences, including vacation, to be maintained in HRIS. In conjunction with this, the roll-out of the USW vacation tracker is planned for 2010.

Absence Type Descriptions to be Used

Departments and divisions should use the following existing absence types/codes when recording absences in HRIS:

2300 – Sickness – Paid

2305 – Sickness – Unpaid

2310 – Extended Sickness Paid

2245 – Other Leave of Absence – Unpaid

In the event of a widespread pandemic, new pandemic related absence codes will be made available at that time and a communication will be issued providing more details for users.

How to Record Absences in HRIS

Instructions on how to record absences in HRIS are available at:

http://www.ams.utoronto.ca/training/hris/adminnu.htm under the RECORD ABSENCES – PAID & UNPAID section.

Option 1: Recording Absences Directly in HRIS using Time Management

In order to use this method, users must have a valid SecurID card and the appropriate access to HRIS to record the absences. Instructions for obtaining a card are available at: http://www.ams.utoronto.ca/access/sap.htm.

Option 2: Recording Absences using Fast Entry Absences (IT2001) Spreadsheet Upload

Some divisions and departments may be already familiar with the Fast Entry Absences (IT2001) Spreadsheet Upload. This method was rolled out with the Absence Tracking System used to record vacation, sick days and other absences for Professionals/Managers and Confidentials staff. While the vacation tracker is not available yet for USW employees, departments can use the Fast Entry method now to record sick days and other absences, including vacation, for USW employees; however, vacation balance and accrual information will not be available until the roll-out of the USW vacation tracker in 2010.

In order to use this method, there are a number of access roles available. These roles are described in the AMS Divisional Access form, which is available at:http://www.ams.utoronto.ca/Assets/AMS+Digital+Assets/Access/Divisional/hrisdiv.pdf

Go to Time Management – Absence Tracking in Section 2 of the form.

In addition, Human Resources is working with AMS to develop a number of HRIS generated reports that departments and divisions can run and use to monitor absences and for planning purposes. These reports will be available in early September 2009 and a communication announcing their availability will be posted to the AMS listserv.

When to Record Absences

Departments and divisions should maintain a regular, ongoing and timely practice of recording absence information in HRIS. Until there is a widespread pandemic, departments and divisions may continue to record absence information according to the appropriate biweekly and/or monthly payroll schedules.

However, in the event of a widespread pandemic, departments and divisions will be expected to record absences in HRIS on a daily basis to ensure the immediate availability of absence information.

Training

AMS will be offering training on absence tracking at St. George, UTM and UTSC campuses in September and October. Specific dates and details will be available shortly on the HRIS website at: http://www.ams.utoronto.ca/training/hris.htm in the HRIS COURSE REGISTRATION & CALENDAR OF EVENTS section.

Please note that this training is intended for staff who will be responsible for onlining absence information in HRIS. Please confirm with your supervisor prior to registering for the course.

Implementation of an Attendance Tracking Process

There is some flexibility on how departments and divisions can establish their attendance tracking process. Some things to consider in establishing a process include, but are not limited to, the number of staff, the physical location(s) of staff, the individual who staff currently contact if they will be absent or to request time off, and whether the person who does the HRIS processing has back-up during his or her absence.

The following are examples of how departments and divisions have implemented attendance tracking:

Example 1: Division is using the Fast Entry Absences Spreadsheet.

The division is large so the Business Officer has distributed the spreadsheet to all of the managers in the Division. Each manager is responsible for recording absences for his or her staff on the spreadsheet and then submitting it to the Business Officer before pay close. The Business Officer merges all of the spreadsheets received from the managers and then uploads the merged spreadsheet for the whole division to HRIS. In this example, the managers do not have access to HRIS.

Example 2: Department is entering directly in HRIS using Time Management.

All staff in a large department report their absences to their manager via email and copy the designated person responsible for absence tracking in the department (e.g., a Business Officer with HRIS access). The designated person enters the absence information for each staff member directly into HRIS using Time Management.

Example 3: Department is using the Fast Entry Absences Spreadsheet.

All staff in a small department report their absences to their manager via email and copy the designated person responsible for absence tracking in the department (e.g., a Business Officer with HRIS access). The designated person enters the absence information in the Fast Entry Absences (IT2001) Spreadsheet and then uploads the spreadsheet to HRIS.

Example 4: Division is using a Decentralized Absence Tracking Process.

The division is large with multiple departments each of which has a designated person responsible for absence tracking in the department. The designated person records the absence information in HRIS using either the Fast Entry Absences Spreadsheet or directly into HRIS using Time Management. For departments who do not have a designated person, another department’s designated person records the absence information in HRIS using either method.

Contacts & Resources

For assistance in establishing an attendance tracking process within your department or division, contact your CAO and/or your divisional HR Office.

HRIS processing related inquiries may be directed to: Darlene Chow at darlene.chow@utoronto.ca or 978-5048 ORhris.help@utoronto.ca.

For information on pandemic planning at the University of Toronto, see the University’s H1N1 website at:http://www.preparedness.utoronto.ca.