Fords, NJ (PRWEB) April 23, 2005
When the Mid-Atlantic and Central West Jersey Clubs of the Automobile Association of America (AAA) merged, a unique workforce management challenge was presented. The combined operation included 90 different offices spread out over a territory that crossed state lines. In addition the staff grew from 2100 to 2,600 employees, most of whom are deployed in the ClubÂs well-known retail, call center, and insurance operations.
ÂAAA,Â as the Association is often referred to, is perhaps best known to the general public for its roadside assistance to stranded motorists. Although independent contractors supply many of the service trucks used for this purpose, AAA Mid-Atlantic also owns and operates its own fleet of vehicles.
At the time of the merger, AAA Central West Jersey was capturing, tracking, and reporting employee time using an installed solution, the well-known TC-1Â software offered by Datamatics Management Services Inc., a New Jersey-based software development and management-consulting firm. TC-1Âs robust work rule configuration, report generation, cost allocation, and payroll interface functionality have made it the preferred solution for thousands of businesses and organizations across the country.
Operational Dilemma: Installed or Native Web Solution
But TC-1 presented an operational dilemma to AAA Mid-Atlantic after the merger. As Bob Deissroth, AAA Mid-AtlanticÂs Director of HRIS and Payroll explain, ÂWe were already using web based HRIS and Payroll packages, complete with self-service options for employees. We needed our workforce management package to be web-based as well.Â
AAA Mid-Atlantic then invited Datamatics and a second vendor to present proposals for a web-based labor management solution. ÂThis was a top level management evaluation,Â Deissroth points out. ÂWe assembled a team from our HR, payroll, insurance, retail services, call takers, and management staff to assess features and functionality, and come to a decision about the best option.Â
A key factor in the decision making process was the extent to which the web solution could successfully cut across and interface with the many other systems already in use at the Mid-Atlantic Club. ÂA cookie-cutter approach would definitely not have worked for us,Â advises Deissroth.
AAAÂs concern was very real. Many of the first generation native web solutions offer only simplified functionality. Others permit some degree of customizing, but charge heavily for the work. The extra cost can often break the total project budget. ÂWe were looking for a flexible vendor,Â Deissroth explains, Âone that would provide us with the solution we needed at a realistic price, without taking a Ânickel and dimeÂ approach.Â
Cutting-Edge ASP Product Wins Out
That type of challenge was custom suited for Datamatics. ÂI always emphasize to our clients that Datamatics is a services company, not simply a software vendor,Â says Norman C. Heinle, DatamaticsÂ president. ÂWe donÂt just want to sell a product. We want to partner with our clients to help them achieve the benefits they aimed to obtain when they sought an automated solution in the first place.Â
What Datamatics proposed to meet AAA Mid-AtlanticÂs post-merger workforce management needs was TimesheetPlusÂ, a cutting-edge ASP solution that allows users to log in to their account from any location via the Internet. TimesheetPlus is a native web solution offering a quick and easy way for companies to automate attendance management, benefit entitlements, employee scheduling, expense reimbursement, project tracking, and much more.
TimesheetPlus allows users to create different schedules and timesheets for different groups of employees, establish paid time off (PTO) benefit accrual rules, create cost centers to track employee time and create billable hours, set rules for processing data for export to a payroll provider system, and set security levels for user accounts.
A feature of keen interest to AAA Mid-AtlanticÂs evaluation team was the dot board report they had seen in the TC-1 solution running at Central West Jersey. This report allows managers to assess real time staff coverage levels at the push of a button, showing colored dots on a fielded grid. When asked if this feature could be offered in TimesheetPlus, ÂDatamatics answered the right way,Â says Deissroth.
Client Satisfaction Achieved
In August of 2004, TimesheetPlus went live at AAA Mid-Atlantic. Employees in all of its locations now use the system, even the fleet truck drivers who access it from desk top computers in the motor pool offices. So far, the experience has been very positive. ÂWe chose a good product,Â says Deissroth, Âand weÂre pretty happy with it.Â
Norman Heinle couldnÂt be more pleased. ÂWe can offer clients the solution that best suits their needs,Â he explains. ÂDatamatics can provide versatile labor management functionality in a scaled solution. We can also offer the implementation option Âinstalled software, native web, or web-based (thin client/server)-- that fits each clientÂs particular operating environment.Â
In the end, service is the key. ÂOur service is what set us apart from other vendors,Â Heinle explains. ÂWe want prospective clients to know that successful attainment of their labor management objectives is our ultimate goal, and that we donÂt just sell solution packages. We offer a variety of installation, training, and consulting services to get our clients to where they want to be.Â
Datamatics Management Services, Inc. is a New Jersey-based software development and management consulting company. Datamatics' TC-1 Labor Management System is a leading software package used in thousands of businesses, including QVC, Jet Blue, and Armed Forces Savings Bank. TC-1Â automates employee scheduling, attendance record keeping, benefit accrual tracking, and cost allocation. Datamatics also offers an ASP service, TimesheetPlusÂ, to businesses looking for an outsourced solution to workforce management.
Datamatics provides consulting and training options for a variety of business needs. Our expert services are customized to clients' specific needs, providing management, financial, IT, and personnel solutions, as well as the metrics for measuring results achieved.