By John Sundberg
Over the years, I have traveled to many businesses both in the U.S. and abroad and am no longer surprised by the inefficiencies of setting up new employees or managing existing employee's information and workspace. I am not talking about confidentiality—most companies understand the legal and financial consequences of not protecting their employees' records. But, I am talking about the simple process of creating an employee workspace that allows them to be productive and begin to do the work they were hired to do from day one.
How many of you have employees join your department or company and you don’t have their computer, phone, access to required business systems, or even a security badge set up? How many of you rely on a paper-based requisition system or have different strategies for equipment, systems access, approvals, and implementation? This is a time that a company should consider an Enterprise Feedback Management (EFM) strategy.
Enterprise Feedback Management is a term that generally refers to surveys, but it is much more than that. EFM encompasses the gathering of all data whether internal or external. With that in mind, why not use an EFM strategy for new employees or managing existing employee’s requirements?
Why not create an online form that can easily be completed at the time of hire that automatically creates electronic requisitions and sends an email to the appropriate manager for approval? Sound difficult? Doesn’t have to be, but it does take an overall enterprise strategy to accomplish. There needs to be a commitment from all departments, managers, and support areas to successfully identify the process and support it through implementation.
As I said at the beginning, I am never surprised at the inefficiencies but I am equally impressed by those companies that do implement EFM and specifically for employee information. Let me share a couple of examples.
The Problem: This company had developed a paper based form that was filled in by managers to request either a new employee be given access to the internal network or a variation of an existing employee’s access. To cover all possibilities, a number of optional sections were included in the form. In some cases, depending on the access or equipment required, additional request forms had to be completed and attached to the original request at a later date. The resulting form was six (6) pages long.
Some requests required approval and/or action from a number of divisions adding to costs of moving paper forms from one place to another and delaying action on the request. After completion and approval, the submission of this form, resulted in up to 6 change requests being created by a Help Desk operator. Much of the information had to be repeatedly entered into different tickets, resulting in duplication of effort and increasing the opportunity for data-entry error.
The Solution: When they implemented EFM, they created a process using an online form on the intra-net. By integrating this form into their existing Help Desk system not only enabled tickets to be automatically created and assigned but the submission, approval and follow-up was handled through a combination of web-enabled forms; email and Help Desk tickets.
The Results: Error rates were reduced though use of field validation and dynamic fields supplying valid choices. Workflow ensured the swift notification of approvers and requesters. The cost of processing a ‘new starter’ dropped from over nearly $100 to just over $20. This resulted in a 79% cost savings.
The Problem: Another example is a company that, as a result of the merger, inherited two related departments, a number of printed forms, many duplicating each other without full coverage of the required information. Because of the physical spread of the department with multiple offices located throughout the state, the requests were being faxed, couriered and/or snail mailed at least 5 times for approval and action.
After completion and approval, manual entry was required at the Help Desk to create tickets. However, as a result of the multiple fax transmissions and mailings, phone calls were often required to clarify details and requirements. As a result, a request could take up to 4 working days just to reach the Help Desk; be checked for correct information and be manually entered in the system before action could be started.
The Solution: By implementing an EFM strategy, and as above, by utilizing an online form on the intra-net not only enabled tickets to be automatically created and assigned but the submission, approval and follow-up was handled through a combination of web-enabled forms, and email.
Integration with their employee database allowed not only for data validation and dynamic field selections but approver identification, routing and workflow. Error rates were reduced though use of field validation and dynamic fields supplying valid choices. Workflow ensured the swift notification of approvers and requesters.
The Result: The cost of processing a typical form dropped from over $60 to just over $20. This resulted in a 74% cost savings.
You can see the obvious benefits of having an overall EFM strategy and in the case of new employees, allow them the opportunity to “hit the ground running” and provide an immediate contribution to your organization – that’s why they were hired, right?!
John Sundberg is founder and president of Kinetic Data a global provider of tailored and packaged BMC ©right; Remedy software solutions that enhance business processes and services. Founded in 1998 and a BMC Alliance Partner since 1999, Kinetic Data is characterized by its can-do approach and command of service management challenges that have resulted in hundreds of unique and exceptional client solutions. As a BMC Independent Software Vendor, Kinetic Data offers BMC Remedy customers a powerful software solution: Kinetic Survey. Kinetic Survey manages customer feedback utilizing Online Forms, Surveys, Call Scripting, and Data Validation. John can be reached at 651-556-0930 or