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Sage HRMS Software Review

 

Sage HRMS Technology Review

Sage HRMS supports the Microsoft server platforms of Windows NT, Windows 2000, Windows XP, and Windows Server 2003, and the DBMS platforms of MS SQL Server, MySQL, and Visual FoxPro. Further technology specifications include the fact that a SOAP-based Application Program Interface (API) is leveraged for object/data stream exposure (for integration); a Common Object Model (COM) API is utilized for integration as well; and Sage Data or "SData" is leveraged for data entry, data queries, flow control, batching, Single Sign On (SSO), discoverability, and metadata. Still for many organizations, the most pressing technology concerns involve integration and customization; detailed below:

System Integration Capabilities

Because of the very nature of the data, the Sage HRMS facilitates tight integration between the payroll and HR functions of the system—allowing for seamless data sharing. However, the elements of HR and Payroll also need to integrate with additional ERP areas such as Financials (including GL) and Timekeeping—modules that the Sage HRMS partners up with nicely. Additionally the Sage HR software also easily integrates with other systems (two of the most leveraged and widely known being ADP and Kronos) and has an easily leveraged interface with 3rd-party learning management systems (LMSs)—which provide substantial and strongly needed functionality. The HR software also leverages add-on modules for employee benefit administration and enrollment; both of which integrate directly with payroll, HR, and Employee Self-Service. Per company representatives, any integrated solution not natively supported can be custom programmed by using the application's integrated tools (discussed in more depth below).

Groupware integration is handled through the Sage KnowledgeSync application; a solution that can integrate with numerous email technologies (including Microsoft Exchange and Lotus Notes), but offers little else in terms of contacts, calendar appointment, and task syncing. However, future product roadmaps reveal that KnowledgeSync will in all likelihood have that additional functionality soon.

Software Customization Capabilities

Sage HRMS has several tools to provide customized workflow, integration, and business intelligence—namely Sage OrgPlus; HR Actions; and Sage KnowledgeSync. Key functionality is as follows:

  • Sage OrgPlus
    Sage OrgPlus is an organizational charting tool designed to model hierarchal relationships. Functionality includes: Organizational Chart Creation (to automatically create organizational charts by linking directly to your Sage HRMS database); Integrated Data Management (to plan for organizational scenarios via spreadsheet functions on data and by linking to other files that contain employee-related information); Business Planning Tools (to empower managers to create "what-if" business scenarios with dynamic drag-and-drop chart-building functionality); Chart Customization (to create visual impact by customizing organizational charts with predefined templates or wholly customer-designed charts); Flexible Formatting; Automatic Email Distribution (to define different email distribution lists for each organization chart file and keep everyone up to date on the latest organization structure additions, changes, and open positions); and Tree Panel Reorganization (to allow for quick addition, deletion, and editing of records without navigating a cumbersome org chart.
  • HR Actions
    Powered by Delphia Consulting (a Sage Endorsed Solution), HR Actions is a paperless workflow tool to allow documents and information to flow pursuant to defined business processes, and promote document sharing in a paperless environment. Containing over 400 configurable fields, HR Actions serves as the automation engine behind nearly every manager-initiated personnel action (such as performance appraisal) that flows through the Manager Self-Service (MSS) module. Likewise, HR Actions automates the collection of data directly from employee-initiated forms through the Employee Self-Service (ESS) module. These functions are guided by HR Actions' easy-to-use form builder that operates off of a wizard driven system to help with the creation of dynamic fields, read-only fields, file attachment areas, instructions, and section headers. Further, business rules can be defined by HR Actions' workflow engine that delineates how many approvals are required and the sequence of the approval chain. Additionally, the HR Actions application is made even more useful through real-time visibility, monitoring, and control through Manager Self Service and HR; as well as a detailed audit trail that comes standard with each form routed for approval.
  • Sage KnowledgeSync
    Powered by the Sage Endorsed Solution of VineyardSoft and using the Microsoft SQL Server database (although SQL Server Express and MS Access are also database options), KnowledgeSync is Sage's intelligent workflow and business process automation tool. Supporting Microsoft Exchange (Outlook) email, Internet (SMTP), and Lotus Notes Mail for both alerts and monitoring of incoming email messages, KnowledgeSync is able to match email/web info with contact records in Sage applications—updating contacts with email details, scheduling follow-ups, and creating accounts, contacts, leads, and transactions based on content received.

Unlike many legacy vendor solution tools, Sage's KnowledgeSync can also be driven without programming or SQL expertise, thanks to a "wizard-driven" visual process that gives step-by-step instructions for event design, trigger definitions, and messages. In turn, KnowledgeSync can be used for cross-application analysis; either combining/analyzing data from multiple applications–and using results to trigger integrated alerts—or using combined results for data movement or auditing across multiple Sage databases. In fact, KnowledgeSync provides a complete event audit trail, including triggered events, alerts, and executed workflow.

Aside from these tools, several configuration options are also available for users to customize the Sage HRMS user interface (UI); including theme changes and organizational branding. However, it should be noted that Sage considers these customizations to be an upgrade-worthy change, and (as discussed above) your organization must be leveraging at least the "Select" package in order to customize fields, screens, and dashboards. In addition, advanced customization is also possible through Sage business partners thanks in no large part to the additional resources (i.e. tools/training) that partners within this channel possess.

Sage HRMS does not use a multi-tenant database architecture, and similarly doesn't offer Platform as a Service (PaaS) tools to support software customization in cloud or typical Software as a Service (SaaS) environments—where software customization is performed within the constructs of multi-tenant architectures and provisioned within layers of abstraction between data logic and application logic so as to not impact frequent release iterations and upgrades.

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