Skip to McMaster Navigation Skip to Site Navigation Skip to main content
McMaster logo

FHS HR Process Transition Plan

The Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS) is McMaster’s largest Faculty, employing over half of all University employees. It is unique as the only Canadian university that combines, in one Faculty, schools of medicine (including two regional campuses), nursing, rehabilitation science, and the programs of midwifery, Bachelor of Health Sciences, physician assistant and postgraduate health sciences education.

FHS is home to a multi-faceted workforce that encompasses clinical and non-clinical departments as well as health professional programs and schools, integrates with hospital networks and community clinical sites, and collaborates with organizations external to McMaster, including all levels of government. This complexity is enabled by a culture of flexibility and nimbleness and is supported by focused administrative units that work in collaboration with central campus.

With over 2,500 staff members, 900 full-time and 3,000 part-time faculty members, the Faculty thrives on its inter-professional and collaborative approach to healthcare and learning. As part of FHS’s continued pursuit of excellence to ensure the Faculty remains at the leading edge of health sciences education, it strives towards inter-professional collaboration, commitment to its communities, accountability and responsibility, innovation, excellence, integrity, respect, and optimism.

HR Review Recommendations

The HR Review identified areas of potential duplication between FHS HR and central HR Operations, including some transactional work, as well as areas where there was a lack of role clarity and/or handoffs back and forth that reduced efficiency without adding value.

Key Opportunities:

The FHS HR team undertook an exercise to identify areas where this duplication was unnecessary and where it added value in FHS because of the need for a focused FHS lens on the activity, and/or required client facing interaction. A working group comprised of leaders and team members from FHS HR, HR Operations, HR CoEs and the HR PMO then reviewed this transactional work and identified areas where shifting the work to HR Operations would streamline processes, reduce duplication, minimize errors, offer clarity on where the work best resides, improve accuracy and turnaround time, eliminate redundancies and allow for more efficient and effective administration of those transactional activities.

The goal of this transition was to facilitate a consistent, transparent, and positive client experience through the clarity, efficiency and effectiveness offered by a seamless support structure provided in collaboration between FHS HR and HR Operations.

The majority of transactional work for interim hires successfully transitioned in Phase 1. It was then determined that the net new transactional work related to the newly created STE (Short Term Employee) group would be held in the HR Operations group as there were synergies to the interim transactional work. Phase 2 of the transition will be completed in Q4 2021 and will include Unifor and TMG groups (but not MUFA or clinical faculty at this time).

Key Highlights:

  • Collaborated in the development and implementation of processes to create an efficient and effective HR workflow structure;
  • Provided joint training sessions on new processes and initiatives;
  • Clarified FHS HR and HR Operations supports and contacts;
  • Created ongoing operational meetings and reviews of continuous improvement opportunities with FHS HR and HR Operations members, and
  • Confirmed an ongoing commitment to ensure unique FHS HR requirements are met through FHS HR representation on all project teams.

As service and communication partners, HR Operations will manage many general transactional activities and service support, while keeping employees aware of the resources and strategic HR support that are available from FHS HR.

With the exception of payroll-related matters, FHS HR will continue to be the primary contact for FHS leaders and administrators, as well as client-facing activities.

What’s Next?

The two teams and their leaders will continue to review transactional work performed in FHS HR and at the department level to identify which activities would benefit from a transition to FHS HR from departments, increased technology or HR Operations.  Service Level Agreements (SLAs) for all transactional work that has been or will be transitioned will be identified to ensure timely and accurate support is being provided, in line with clients’ needs and expectations.

Working together, HR Operations and FHS HR leaders and team members are committed to achieving the common goal of service and operational excellence with the employee experience at the forefront. The operating model will evolve as the teams continuously improve service and operational efficiencies. Document management will optimize the HR operations in both HR Operations and FHS HR. Client services delivery will be more efficient through digitized, automated, and standardized processes, such as self-services.