Jefferson County boasts more than a thousand employees stretched over 43 different departments, and earning a combined gross salary of more than $160 …
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Jefferson County boasts more than a thousand employees stretched over 43 different departments, and earning a combined gross salary of more than $160 million.
But what Jefferson County does not have is a unified time clock and employee-leave system.
Instead, each department has resorted to”various paper time- entry forms that require duplicate entry into (county’s) financial system by the timekeepers,” according to a report by Jeffco Administrative Services Director Todd Leopold.
Last week Leopold briefed the Jefferson County Board of County Commissioners about the situation and asked for approval to move to a unified electronic time clock and employee-leave system.
The commissioners gave their approval for Leopold to proceed.
The estimated cost of the unified system is $360,000 in addition to a $110,000, three-year annual maintenance contract. That funding is available in this year’s Information Technology Fund, Leopold said.
According to Leopold’s report, and information from Human Resources Director Jennifer Fairweather, what exists now is a patchwork system that combines paper time sheets and spreadsheets. Managers look over and sign off on the figures, then give the information to department timekeepers, who must often manually reenter employee hours into a county payroll program.
Leopold said the current approach is time consuming and likely to result in data-entry errors. He said efficiency studies show companies that use this approach have twice to three times as many payroll and leave errors than those that use an automated system.
With an automated system, county employees will clock in and out on the time clock and make requests for certain types of leave through the new program. Fairweather said she expects the new program will streamline the whole payroll process, and be more accurate and user-friendly for county employees who can actively see their hours instead of retroactively filling out a sheet. She said the program could also help with employee scheduling.
”A lot of the departments have said they’d look forward to something like this,” she said. ”It could be a great tool for them, for making sure shifts are covered, and for avoiding overtime.”
Because of the complexities of integrating the new system in so many departments, it is not expected to be fully operational until midway through 2013.
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