At the recent HR2014 conference in Nice I had the opportunity to catch-up with Kevin Haus, Global Alliances Manager at WorkForce Software. WorkForce Software is a provider of enterprise-grade Time & Attendance and Workforce Scheduling software. In this Q&A, I chatted with Kevin about WorkForce Software’s EmpCenter offering, where this sits in the SuccessFactors Employee Central landscape, and what sets it apart from other offerings in the market.

Thanks for joining me Kevin. Could you take a brief moment to introduce yourself and your role at WorkForce Software?

Thank you Luke for this opportunity.  My name is Kevin Haus, and I am Global Alliances Manager at WorkForce Software. I work with a variety of partners in many different capacities, such as sales, marketing, integrations, support, etc.  I end up wearing many hats depending on what is needed, which is really fun and exciting.

Can you tell us a bit about WorkForce Software and what they offer?

WorkForce Software was founded in 1999 and has emerged as a key player in the competitive workforce management landscape.  Since the company’s inception, we have continually grown in many aspects —from the number of clients we serve, to the number of professionals we employ, to the revenues we generate and reinvestments in our solutions.  Our success has led to fantastic employee and client growth, which has earned us several awards such as a Top Global SaaS provider.  It’s an amazing ride.

We specialize in developing and delivering the most versatile and flexible workforce management solutions available today and our technology is deployed in a diverse array of industries and organizations across the globe.  Our goal is to meet 100% of the client’s needs, not just the easy 80%.  We can do that via our phenomenal configuration capabilities.

Can you give us some more details on your EmpCenter offering?

EmpCenter solution is our flagship workforce management solution that has seen tremendous growth for the last number of years.

EmpCenter helps large employers track employee hours and absences, assign tasks, manage schedules, streamline labor law compliance, and mitigate the risk of employee fatigue. But that’s just the start. With EmpCenter, organizations are able to tackle more strategic workforce management goals – like controlling labor costs through eliminating unearned absences, minimizing unplanned overtime, and increasing productivity by optimizing schedules and labor.

So how does this tie into SuccessFactors Employee Central?

We have a very clean and powerful integration into SuccessFactors.  Our goal for this integration with SuccessFactors was to merge two best of breed solutions into one great offering, and I think we have done just that.  We built a standard iFlow integration into SuccessFactors’ Employee Central and Employee Central Payroll to simplify the daily user’s life by only having to do things once.  With Single Sign On and direct link between the applications, users are just logging onto 1 system and doing the activities that they need to do without worrying what application they need to be in.  It’s nice and easy.  With a number of ecstatic clients already leveraging this easy solution, we know that we hit our goal.

Tell me a bit about your partnership with SuccessFactors

Our companies are great partners.  It is not often in business that you can build a truly symbiotic relationship. From our development, sales, professional services, support teams, etc… We mutually help each other in a number of different ways, and our teams work together as one joint team with our one goal in mind; client success.  We at WorkForce Software want the happiest clients possible, and our clients are not just numbers… So we wanted to partner with a company that can help us achieve that goal across the entire HCM suite, and we are doing just that with SuccessFactors.

SuccessFactors are planning to introduce some “lightweight” Time Management functionality into Employee Central in the next 12 or so months. What impact – if any – does this have on WorkForce Software?

It does not really have an impact to us or the partnership.  We focus on clients that are looking for true workforce management capabilities.  With the functionality that SuccessFactors will be releasing, it is really targeted at a different type of client profile.  It is for clients that haves a very specific basic time needs, which is very different from what we provide.  It may cause some confusion at first, but it really doesn’t impact us or our partnership.

SAP ERP HCM customers are used to having Time & Attendance as part of their ERP system and closely linked to HR. What is the value proposition for a customer to license both Employee Central and WorkForce Software EmpCenter?

All we do is Workforce Management, we are the experts. The majority of ERP systems cannot handle the complexity that EmpCenter can (not even close). The integration between SuccessFactors Employee Central, WorkForce Software, and Employee Central Payroll makes it an easy choice for clients because they get the best of both worlds.

What sets EmpCenter apart from some of the competition?

The biggest is our flexibility.  We have the best configuration tools in the market that allows us to meet our clients’ needs without any costly customization.  It’s great to have a product that you can honestly go into a client and say “give me your most complicated union contract and lets us show you how we can handle it.” We don’t have to dance around complexity.  We can take it head on, and prospects and clients love it.

The major factor that sets WorkForce apart is our culture.  I know it is a cheesy answer, but it is true.  Prospects, clients, and partners feel it on a regular basis. They understand that we care.  We want to help people and businesses, and we do it primarily through workforce management solutions.  A great example of what I am talking about is what we did at HR Tech last year.  Instead of spending money on random stuff that we would hand to people, who stopped by booth, we did a campaign called “WFS Helping Hands,” where we had attendees assembled over 500 care packages in our booth that we delivered to the Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth after the show.  It was big success.  It is those types of things that we do make you proud to work here.  It makes you want to go that extra mile in everything that you do, which our clients see and feel.

Do you have any tips, recommendations, or best practice guidance on Time & Attendance for the readers?

We actually have a webinar coming up on May 28th that will discuss nine essential tips for selecting a Time & Attendance solution.  For those that are interested in attending I encourage them to register through our website.  I think there will be some really valuable information shared. Without spoiling the webinar I think the most important things for people to remember are:

  1. Time & Attendance processes can seem simple… but they rarely are
  1. Automation is king and will drive greater return on your investment
  2. Choose a flexible platform for continual refinement and longer useful life

Is there anything else you would like to add?

The other week we announced that we’ve signed an agreement with Insight Venture Partners to invest in WorkForce Software and take a major equity stake in the company.  Insight Venture Partners is the premier growth oriented private equity fund and they deliver the ideal mix of financial and intellectual resources that will continue to propel WorkForce Software – and our clients – to greater levels of success. We are all very excited about this announcement.  You can find the official press release on our website if you are interested in learning more.

Thanks for joining me Kevin, it’s been a pleasure to talking to you.

Thank you, Luke for taking the time.  I always enjoy speaking with you.

More information on WorkForce Software can be found here and they can be followed on Twitter via @WorkForceSW.

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8 Comments

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  1. Arijit Das

    Hi Luke Marson

    Great blog! Thank you for sharing the interview.

    One question – where can I source documentation on integrating EmpCenter with EC / EC Payroll? The Integration Guide on Embedding WorkForce Software EmpCenter Web Applications in Employee Central addressed the embedding on the functionality in EC; not the actual technical / functional integration of the two products.

    Any insights into this would be heavily appreciated! Thanks in advance.

    Regards

    Arijit Das

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      1. Arijit Das

        Hi Luke

        Many thanks for your reply!

        I also found the document links (both for Boomi & HCI) on Employee Central Integration – SAP Help Portal Page; and the link to the installation and upgrade guides – http://service.sap.com/ec-ondemand in one of your other blogs Evaluating Time Management in the Cloud: What does the SAP partnership with WorkForce Software mean for customers?.

        So this begs me to ask a couple of other questions –

        Is Dell Boomi here to stay on the integration roadmap? If so do we have a go to direction for Boomi vs HCI (for SF and WorkForce integration; or for that matter any other cloud product)?

        Will PO be updated to be aligned with Boomi / HCI (for SF and WorkForce / cloud app integration)?

        I am guessing NO (imho); since why would you route your data from cloud to on-premise and then back to the cloud again?

        But I eagerly wait for your viewpoint on this!

        Kind regards

        Arijit Das

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        1. Luke Marson Post author

          Hi Arjit,

          Boomi isn’t going away soon, but in the longer term I expect SAP to stop offering it to new customers and only offering HCI.

          I know that SAP were investigating putting standard content for integrating EC and SAP ERP onto SAP PI, but I’m unsure if they will go ahead with this. I wouldn’t put money on it!

          Best regards,

          Luke

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