During the next several months, the City will be implementing a new computer system called Munis to replace multiple, separate systems in the Finance and Human Resources Departments, including the Employee Self-Service system. Munis is more efficient and will allow many tasks to be accomplished electronically.
All in one
Currently, the City has multiple systems in place to handle distinct, but sometimes overlapping, functions in Finance and HR:
- PeopleSoft, Inc., from Oracle Corporation, provides financial management solutions and is used for the City’s financials, like accounts payable.
- High Line, a Human Resource Management System, is used for personnel data, personnel actions, and to produce payroll payments. It is also the system used for Employee Self-Service, where employees submit timesheets and view pay stubs.
- NEOGOV is workforce management software for hiring and performance evaluation and is used for job postings and applications.
- Open enrollment, when employees make changes to their insurance benefits, is currently dependent on the insurance provider’s system. In 2012, employees made changes to their insurance benefits on the Aetna site. This dependence means the entry mechanism changes every time the provider does.
“The problem with having these multiple systems is that they don’t interact,” says Russell Hoelting, database administrator and project manager for the Munis implementation project. “So, for example, if the PeopleSoft system needs the payroll data from High Line, employees have to transfer it manually by exporting a file from one system and importing it to the other. It creates a lot of duplicate work with information having to be entered in multiple places.”
The Munis system, from Tyler Technologies, is expected to replace these systems and numerous other shadow systems with one that can manage all the required functions. It has been implemented in many cities across the country.
“The City where I worked previously made the transition from multiple systems to the Munis system,” says Laurie Hadley, assistant city manager. “It simplified so many processes and moved requests through the system so much faster. It was a lot of work and there was a learning curve for employees but everyone loved the system. It was one of the best decisions we ever made.”
Tyler Technologies will host the new system on its servers and will be responsible for all the equipment, software, upgrades, backups and disaster recovery.
“Right now, there are multiple servers for the multiple systems and IT staff is responsible for all related maintenance,” says Russell. “Combining multiple systems into one and having Tyler take over some of the maintenance tasks will free up physical resources and IT staff time. This will have a significant, positive impact to other areas of the City.”
Tyler Technologies also offers round the clock tech support for dealing with any problems that might arise.
What to expect
For most employees, the biggest change from this project will be to the Employee Self-Service system.
“I think people will like the new Munis interface,” says Russell. “It is very user friendly. It is different and employees will have to adjust but I think it will be easier for people to learn. Employees will still be submitting timesheets and viewing pay stubs electronically. It will just look different.”
Outside of the Employee Self-Service function, Finance and HR staff will be the main users of the new system.
“We will move the requisitions and Purchase Order systems to Munis,” says Russell. “We will also use the system for Open Enrollment and perhaps other functions as we get to know the system better.”
The project began gearing up in February. City staff will be working with the company to implement the system and to migrate the data from the existing three systems into the new one.
“It’ll be a lot of work for a lot of people but it’ll be worth it in the end,” says Russell.
Plans are to have the system implemented towards the end of this year.