What was the scope of their involvement?
Staff Squared is a multi-tenanted HR database. It wasn’t developed for us, although we’ve worked closely with Atlas on future developments. They created and sold the product. We approached them to be a partner, so it wasn’t bespoke development for us. We work with them to resell it, but we also manage it for many of our clients.
We’re quite aligned with Atlas and Staff Squared for future product developments. Often, they’ll come to us with an idea for a system enhancement and ask for our opinion. We’re usually ahead of that, and we give them suggestions for future add-ons to the system. In that sense, we don’t have a typical client relationship; we work in partnership with them to help develop their offering to our client base. Any the same time, their other clients also benefit from those improvements.
They incorporate our recommendations or requests to service our clients’ needs. As an out-of-the-box software system, it will provide the end user with company-level access to all of their employee data and enable them to do reporting and MI [management information] in terms of absence, new-starters, leavers, wage calculations, and absence rates. It also tracks holidays for employees, allowing them to book time off through the system and get approval from a manager, which streamlines the authorizing of annual leave much quicker. It can also record other absences for sickness, dependency leave, and compassionate leave, offering a full history of the staff.
Equally, we find the system really useful in terms of uploading HR documents, enabling users to form a mini HR intranet. All the templates, policies, procedures, and forms an employee would need access to can be uploaded into the system, and any employee can view those as they need. Users also can add employee-related documentation to their portfolio in the system, which basically forms an online HR filing option as well. All the employee docs are grouped in a single cloud-based location, instead of on a shared server that everyone else might need to access.
I typically deal with Jennifer [Managing Director] and Simon [Director/CMO] at Atlas. I don’t do the day-to-day stuff in the system, so my team contacts them for any support queries. I think 2 support people are helping us with any queries we have on a daily basis. In total, there are 4 people at Atlas with whom we work. I think a person left the company and was replaced since we started working with them, but our relationship goes back quite a few years, so we’d expect some turnover in staff.
How did you come to work with Atlas Clever Software?
We’ve used a number of HR software providers over the years. We’ve worked with some bigger players, but their systems became overly complicated for our client base. We moved away and looked for a new provider that was easier to deal with but much more Agile in terms of developing the system. That’s why we searched among a variety of software providers in the market space. We went to tender eventually and started to build a relationship with Atlas. They met our goals and our clients’ requirements much more closely than others.
How much have you invested with Atlas Clever Software?
They charge a standard monthly fee, but we get that discounted and charge our clients a similar price. So, we just take the money from the client and pay Atlas for the service. It’s not a development fee.
What is the status of this engagement?
We started working together around January of 2014, and the work is still ongoing and growing. We’re adding new clients all the time.