Steven Birchfield, Founder
Fragmented HR systems and workforce management strategies do more damage than good when organizing knowledge workers, aligning strategy, and accelerating project execution. Take, for instance, the case of a large company that was failing to complete its projects on time. Looking under the hood, the firm lacked visibility into its 5,000 researchers and what they were working on. The reason: there was no consolidated record of the research staff because the company was depending on disparate HR systems for different regions (US, Canada, India, and so on). In addition, each functional department used its own project system. The firm approached innovative collaboration solutions company Automation Centre to address the issue. “We consolidated the workforce data for them and created a global directory of the research staff and their skills,” says Steven Birchfield, Founder of Automation Centre. “In addition, we helped them align projects with strategy by planning projects for the entire year and earmarking knowledge workers for different focus areas—such as cloud and machine learning—for smooth project execution.” This helped the company assign the right knowledge worker to the right process and review their performance at the end of the year.
Knowledge workers, with their ability to find answers to key questions, are crucial for project execution. But they work on a dynamic time schedule, depending on the project demand. However, the traditional workforce management systems follow the generic time and attendance model. This leads to poor workforce management, which, in turn, hurts the morale and productivity of knowledge workers. Addressing these concerns, Automation Centre offers a range of project and portfolio management solutions through their Tracker Suite Software. These solutions enable users to prioritize resources, improve headcount planning, increase visibility, and assign the right employees to the right location through visual boards in an agile manner. By providing the decision-makers with accurate and up-to-date real time information about their knowledge workers’ availability and performance, Tracker Suite allows companies to scope their projects in a collaborative, well-defined, and well-resourced manner.
Tracker Suite takes into account the work processes of the knowledge workers and creates personalized experiences
“Tracker Suite takes into account the natural work processes of the knowledge workers and creates personalized experiences,” says Birchfield.
In order to deliver high-quality work, knowledge workers need to prioritize their projects for the coming weeks and maintain effective communication with all the stakeholders involved in the projects. To this end, Tracker Suite comprises Personnel Tracker, Project Tracker, and Time Tracker, along with a complete enterprise reporting tool. While Personnel Tracker allows users to register all the skills of the knowledge workers and their availability, Project Tracker enables them to create projects prioritized based upon organizational strategies to create documentation related to project objectives and to schedule key resources. Time Tracker allows users to track the performance and time spent on each project. An Engineering Manager, for instance, can assign her 100-member team to different projects then track and report their performance centrally. The manager can easily adjust schedules and priorities to maintain an organized and powerful operating environment.
Automation Centre’s client engagement strategy focuses on creating unique experiences for different types of knowledge workers. At the outset, the company creates a storyboard for the client’s business through which it defines the end-to-end work processes. During the implementation, it works closely with the staff, from the executive management to managers to general users, to get the buy-in from every individual who will be using Tracker Suite. Companies can also integrate the solution with their existing HR and/or ERP Systems. With easy access to comprehensive information, clients can better manage workers’ experiences. As an example, Automation Centre helped a small oil and gas consulting company—with its consultants spread across the globe—generate invoices on-demand without having to spend time gathering information from emails and spreadsheets.
Backed by 25 years of experience, Automation Centre looks forward to also helping auditors and other customers with innovative document management functionality as part of its offering.