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April 16, 2001

More departments add TAS

By Eric Rangus


Slowly but steadily, the soon-to-be-Universitywide Time and Attendance System (TAS), which replaces paper time sheets and logs the hours of biweekly employees electronically, is making its way across campus.

With parking and community services, the controller office, grants and contracts, and University admissions going online this past weekend, about 10 percent of the University’s 5,000 biweekly employees now log their time through the phone-based TAS.

Those departments join accounts payable, Yerkes, the bursar’s office, Human Resources and Network Communications online. Next up, according to David Thurston, assistant vice president for finance and bursar, are the School of Public Health, the Information Technology Division (ITD),

Institutional Advancement and the police department. No exact times for implementation have been set.

“Our goal is to go department by department and do it at a convenient time, according to the business they do,” Thurston said. He leads the TAS project committee, which includes members from payroll, grants and contracts, Human Resources, training and ITD.

Thurston said he hopes one-third of the implementation will be completed this summer, another third in the fall and the remainder in the spring and summer of 2002.

Using the old system, employees would write down their time worked, have it approved by their supervisor, turn it in for their manager to sign, and the hours would be keyed in by another person, allowing the employees to get paid.

The new system automatically tabulates all the hours, re-ports are run just once, and du-plication of work is eliminated.

“It’s a real user-friendly system,” said Loette King, the timekeeper for accounts payable which, along with the payroll department, were the first areas of the University proper to begin using the system, starting in November. The system has been in use at Crawford Long and Emory hospitals for quite some time.

“As a manager, it gives me an opportunity to keep an eye on what’s going on,” King said. It allows her to track overtime, she added, and ensures that the department’s 18 biweekly employees are paid for all hours worked.

System implementation encompasses three phases. The first is the “pilot” period. A project team works with each department, holding training sessions for both users and timekeepers to school them on the system and helping them evaluate the new processes.

Timekeepers also attend a separate training session, where they learn how to operate the system once it is installed on their computer. When employees call to clock in, their call is routed to the main system maintained by ITD.

“The same people are already working with the time sheets. They’re now just doing it electronically,” Thurston said. He added the two-week pilot period gives employees the opportunity to “play with the system and get familiar with it.”

The second phase is the “parallel” period. It also lasts two weeks and entails having employees fill out their time both on paper sheets and over the phone, then comparing the two for accuracy. After the parallel phase, the system is ready to go online.

“It’s been very smooth,” said King. “In the first week or so, some people might have forgotten to sign in, but you don’t see that now.”

Employees who used the paper-based system TAS is replacing sometimes experienced delays in receiving their paychecks. The new automated system will drastically reduce that occurrence. Salaried employees will not use TAS.

For more information about TAS implementation, visit the finance website at and click on the Time and Attendance System logo.


Back to Emory Report April 16, 2001