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20 Recommendations

The report detailed 20 recommendations, with four of which that were identified as taking priority:

  1. Transactional issues should be addressed immediately, and the technology and processes related to payroll must have the highest priority. The systems and process issues that are driving errors and inefficiency are consuming resources. Without solutions to these significant problems, HR will be unable to make progress on developing value-added services and contributing to the strategic goals of McMaster.
  2. The complexity of the benefit and pension plans is contributing to errors and the inefficiency of administration. Additional expertise in pension and benefits are required and consideration needs to be given to simplify benefit and pension plans ensuring the changes will retain and attract the talent required for the future.
  3. Restructure HR advisory services and the current Service Centre model.
  4. The AVP CHRO must have the responsibility, authority and accountability for the human resources function at McMaster to influence the people practices and culture.

Information Box Group

Recommendation #1 Learn More

The highest priority of this report is to establish a payroll team to develop a payroll solution. The team must have the appropriate expertise (CRA, Oracle, project management) and the appropriate resources to create a solution. Regular progress reports should be provided to the HR Review Executive Team with a final report in 18 months.

Recommendation #2 Learn More

A team, composed of experts from HR, Finance and UTS, should travel to other PeopleSoft institutions which have a Faculty of Medicine to review their PeopleSoft HR structure and how data flows between the HR and Finance modules. Based on what is learned, some re-design of the HR, and perhaps the Finance module, may be required to ensure accurate and streamlined payroll activity. Please note, this recommendation is linked with Recommendation #9.

Recommendation #3 Learn More

The payroll team should conduct a comprehensive analysis of workflow and procedures for each of the major tasks with a special emphasis on integration with the finance module. Operating procedures for how each employee group should be set-up in Mosaic will be developed ensuring that benefits, pensions, and marginal tax rates are correct, that the pay is 100% correct, and that the pay comes out of the correct Chatfield. Manual processes should be minimized and all opportunities to utilize Mosaic workflow should be maximized. Payroll information should flow directly from the business unit to the payroll unit. Documentation and training materials should be developed to ensure procedures are communicated and understood.

Recommendation #4 Learn More

The payroll function and accountability for payroll should remain in Central HR. There should be a payroll unit with a payroll manager clearly visible, accountable and available to the McMaster community. Central HR needs to employ people with the expertise and skills necessary to manage a very complex employee and payroll environment using an Oracle system. Payroll information should flow directly and electronically from the business unit to the payroll unit. Documentation and training materials should be developed to ensure procedures are communicated and understood.

Recommendation #5 Learn More

Conduct a review of the benefit and pension plans with a goal to reducing the number of plans over time.

Recommendation #6 Learn More

Ensure that Central HR is staffed with experts to appropriately service the complexity of the pension and benefit plans. Investigate industry standards and hire the appropriate number of pension and benefit employees in Central HR. This level of complexity requires employees with expert knowledge

Recommendation #7 Learn More

McMaster should develop a strategy to simplify benefits and pensions through negotiations. Any enhancements to benefits and pensions should come about through a different methodology

Recommendation #8 Learn More

Abandon the generalist model in the SC. Human Resources needs to be staffed with experts who can develop knowledge regarding McMaster’s complexity. Procedures, checklists and data sharing tools should be utilized to develop response timelines and efficiencies.

Recommendation #9 Learn More

Develop a business partner model with joint responsibilities to the business unit and Central HR using model #2 above. The number of business partners and where they are deployed should be based on the volume and complexity of work. Some business partners will service multiple business units where there is insufficient volume to justify their deployment. Ideally this recommendation should be linked to Recommendation #2. Site visits to other institutions should include reviewing their model for the delivery of HR Advisory Services.

Recommendation #10 Learn More

Central HR units (Total Rewards, ELR, OD) need to be staffed with technical specialists. The McMaster community needs to understand how and when to access these experts and the deployed HR business partners will often serve as gatekeepers in a liaison capacity.

Recommendation #11 Learn More

Transactional HR work (employee set-up, payroll, etc.) should no longer be processed in FHS HR. FHS departments should submit their transactions directly to a central payroll department for processing. In order to implement this recommendation a number of things will need to occur: · Central HR will need to become familiar with FHS complexity and needs, · Central HR, FHS HR, Faculty Relations files and department HR files will need to integrated and shared electronically, and, · A central payroll department will need to be created and staffed appropriate with certified payroll analysts to manage the additional work; it is suggested that some employees from FHS HR be redeployed to Central HR.

Recommendation #12 Learn More

Central HR develop efficient recruitment, payroll and other HR systems and processes designed to reflect the uniqueness of FHS needs.

Recommendation #13 Learn More

FHS needs an appropriate number of deployed business partners to support their volume and complexity in a centrally coordinated model for HR advisory services.


Recommendation #14 Learn More

Recognizing that McMaster is a decentralized university, not all HR employees need to report to the AVP CHRO, but the responsibilities, authority and accountability of the AVP CHRO and her managers must be clearly understood by the community

Recommendation #15 Learn More

Central HR develop a talent acquisition team dedicated to recruitment. This team should be responsible for posting jobs, external advertising campaigns, developing an applicant screening process, providing best practices for interviews and reference checking, etc. The team should train and support hiring managers through the recruitment process.

Recommendation #16 Learn More

A process flow analysis and mapping of the recruitment processes for faculty and clinical faculty should occur, with a goal to shortening timelines and ensuring requirements are communicated to departments in order to avoid delays.

Recommendation #17 Learn More

Central payroll and records should have the knowledge for how to properly set-up faculty and clinical faculty in Mosaic to ensure their pay, benefits and tenure clock is correctly tracking. Additionally, the Office of the Provost and FHS HR need a technology solution that allows them to send requests to Central HR for employee record corrections and other transactional requests

Recommendation #18 Learn More

A HR business partner(s) should be assigned to support researchers in the recruitment of highly qualified personnel.

Recommendation #19 Learn More

The central HR staff should be consolidated into a single location with accessible access for employees.

Recommendation #20 Learn More

McMaster should create a single reliable electronic record for all employee files and purchase a document management system to manage employee files. Develop a policy that governs the employee file and retention of information