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The Carval HR Software Blog

Does your school really need HR Software?

Posted by Emma Clare

02/07/15 09:30

You may be facing decisions about how to manage your Human Resources and Payroll. If you're thinking of investing in HR software to do this in-house then you will need to put together a very clear justification for how the investment will benefit your school. 


Here we look at the things that you should consider when constructing your business case.

  1. Managing change
  2. Reducing costs
  3. Increasing productivity or reducing headcount
  4. Improving data accuracy & availability
  5. Reducing risk

HR Software provides the tools for the efficient and effective management of your employees. Its use can help increase administration efficiencies, reduce operating costs and provide immediate access to accurate information for strategic analysis.

For example, here are just a few of the things that Carval's HR software for academies includes:

  • Recruitment
  • Holiday and absence management 
  • Training and development management
  • Performance management
  • Workflow tools 
  • Reporting including workforce census return
  • Integration with Capita SIMS

However, successfully implementing a new Human Resource or Payroll system requires not only money but a great deal of planning, time and commitment. So before undertaking this process it is important that you are very clear about your objectives and the benefits an HR system could deliver. Here are some ideas on things you should consider...

1) Managing change

HR Software can drive efficiencies and also provide some very valuable analytical data. However you need to be realistic about what you are going to do with the information once you have it. 

If your school has policies in place and, as a result of having better metrics available, you discover that they are not being adhered to, who will be responsible for ensuring that they are actively enforced? 

It is very likely that not just the people within your team, but across the wider organisation, will have to make changes to the way in which they work.

2) Reducing costs

Whether your motivations for new HR software are driven by a desire to improve service, reduce risks or drive efficiencies, calculating how it could impact the bottom line is going to be fundamental to your argument.

The frustrating thing is that if you had decent Human Resources software this process would be rather simple, if you do not then it will require some investigation and possibly extrapolation to get the figures together.

Calculate the impact of employees not adhering to policies or managers not enforcing them.

It is quite possible that you already have some inkling as to where the efficiency leaks are in your school. Use this knowledge as a starting point. We would suggest paying particular attention to absence and lateness for example.

Calculate the man-hours that could be saved across the organisation entering, reconciling and searching for data.

Ask key people to keep records and extrapolate. You could include things like:

  • Entering timesheet data
  • Reconciling timesheet data for payroll
  • Collating data for the Workforce Census Return
  • Entering expenses
  • Duplicating data entry across HR, Payroll, H&S and Finance
  • Chasing authorisations
  • Putting together reports


3) Increasing productivity

Once you have a clearer picture of where time could be saved, you will then need to consider what value-added activities employees could be completing in the time they would have spent entering, reconciling and searching for data. Depending on their role this could be, for example:

  • Strategic HR activities
  • Team management activities
  • Role-specific activities

4) Improving data accuracy & availability

Informed decision making requires accurate data. How reliable is the data that you hold on your employees?

  • Is it up-to-date?
  • Has it been entered multiple times increasing the chances of error?
  • Is it auditable?

How accessible is the information that you hold to key stakeholders? That is not just to the HR and Payroll teams, but to employees, to managers and to governors? 

HR technology can deliver insightful reporting opportunities and automate the sharing of this with the individuals that it is of value to. 

5) Reducing risk

The fields of Human Resources and Payroll are a minefield of constantly changing legislation.

Non-compliance can lead you to fall foul of the law, risking fines and even imprisonment.

Mistakes can also endanger employees’ and clients’ well-being and damage an organisation’s reputation.

The risks most likely to affect your business will depend on what you do , but consider the potential impact of overlooking things like:

  • DBS checks
  • Right-to-work checks
  • Pensions auto-enrolment responsibilities
  • Risk assessments
  • Health checks & vaccinations
  • Disciplinary and grievance
  • Working Time Directive laws
  • Minimum wage laws



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Topics: HR Software Guides

Discover the tools behind great HR

Carval has been helping organisations streamline their HR and Payroll since 1986. We'd love to help you too! 

Read on to discover ways to:

  • Make your payroll processes accurate and efficient
  • Automate everyday HR admin jobs to drive efficiency and policy adherance
  • Get the time and tools to deliver strategic HR projects that make a difference
  • Deliver a great service to your employees.

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