Staff Wages System

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How We Developed a Giant Labor Management System We Are Really Proud Of

How We Developed a Giant Labor Management System We Are Really Proud Of
1500+
employees tracked simultaneously
$
Reduced overtime costs
Predictive workforce analytics
Automated labor law compliance

A business of any size comes with a lot of paperwork and an immense amount of calculations. There is no place for mistake when time and money are concerned, especially if you have a substantial number of employees. One of our most complicated and all around multi-faceted projects is the Staff Wages System we developed for a holding company that owns a hotel and a restaurant chain.

Case Study

The Staff Wages System is a platform for labor management. An employee of this holding company can work in one or several departments, either for a fixed salary or by the hour. The application helps management maintain the labor budget and schedule staff workloads. The system manages more than 1,500 employees (more than 2,000 in peak season). 

Employees track their hours in the application and have access to wage accounting information. The system automatically calculates payments (including overtime) and provides managers with statistics for the company, for a department, or for a selected employee. The application allows managers to plan their employees’ workloads for the next period, post work shift requests, and receive bids from staff. The Staff Wages System sends notifications about balance changes and grants users a private chat to discuss all financial-related questions. 

The Staff Wages System consists of several parts, and each of them has a number of notable features.
 

Shift management and shift scheduling for large business

Work Shifts Management and Vacations

This part of the system is responsible for managing employees’ work shifts and vacations. It is flexible enough to allow one employee to work another employee’s shift if they agree to do that, and it allows people to manage their days off in a way that is uncomplicated and transparent for both them and management. 
The main features are as follows:

  1. Dashboard (including public mode) – extensive analytics for work shifts, both planned and actual; for staff vacations, and for analytics on department performances. 
  2. Work shift planner where the process and the participants can be managed. 
  3. Anti-cheat system that does not allow people to falsify their shift duration by logging in and out, by reporting time inappropriately, and so on. 
  4. Time-off system that includes registration, paid and unpaid vacations, and days off (school days or sick leaves). 


Salary and Wages Calculation

One of the most important aspects of the system is that it manages all financial operations for employees, management, and the finance department. The main features can be described as follows:

A system for wage calculation, overtime abuse control, salary expenses calculation
  1. Wage and salary information, including access to proof of payment for prior periods. 
  2. Calculations of estimated salary expenses, reports on actual salary expenses, other expenses, and sales. 
  3. Individual salary rates. 
  4. A system module for trainees’ salaries and other associated settings.
  5. Overtime calculations and rate changes. 
  6. Salary payments for one or more pay periods and salary recalculations for any period of time. Includes the possibility to state where the payment should be sent, verifies if the data is sufficient, and exports the final file in the format accepted by the bank. 
  7. Accounting, including financial statements with tables, graphs, and pdf export. 
Software for time-off requests, shift planning and management


Integrated Processes

Many workflows require users in various roles—most often staff and their managers—to collaborate. Here are some examples of those processes that are more complex than the routine operations done by staff or managers alone:

  1. Time-off requests – Employees register the time off they are requesting, and their manager must approve it. 
  2. Shift registration – Follows the same pattern and has to be approved by the manager. 
  3. Shift planning. 
  4. Messages among staff and managers. 
  5. Recruiting a new employee. 
  6. Signing the contract (optional), which includes staff and manager interaction in the system. 



Communications

Internal messaging system for employee interaction

This relatively small unit has the following functions that help build an effective interaction among employees, management, the business, and clients: 

  1. Internal contact list (phone numbers and addresses). 
  2. Internal messaging system that allows staff and management to send messages to an employee or a group of employees. 
  3. Public evaluation forms; creating and editing questionnaires for gathering feedback and statistics. 

Other Features

There are also some other features that help increase system effectiveness from a technical standpoint: 

  1. User roles: Admin, manager, and staff. Currently there are 3 admins and 52 managers; all other employees are classified as staff. 
  2. Server and client caches for faster processing of financial reports. 
  3. Offline mode in case there is poor or no Internet connection. 
 

Technologies and Approach

We amassed a great deal of experience while working on this project and also ran into some unforeseen complications: 

  1. Requirements excluded all “from the box” solutions, so we needed to develop a fully custom system.
  2. Because of the rapid system growth, the requirements for new features could not be fleshed out as well as one would hope, and we had to collaborate on many things and make decisions on the fly. 
  3. Requirements constantly changed, which called for maximum flexibility and perfect resource management. 
  4. We had to move the system into production with a sizable pool of features instead of shipping the MVP and then adding features gradually for a smoother development process. 

We used hybrid technologies such as Ionic Framework 3 for our front end, which allowed one code to work identically across various platforms, including browsers. That reaped us several benefits: 

  1. Minimum support expenses for various platforms. 
  2. Ability to market the app through AppStore. 
  3. Saved money on Android enterprise – Android users can set up their app as a PWA. 

The app is private and not available in the public store as per the client’s decision. The Apple Volume Purchase Program (VPP), which is part of the Apple Developer Program, allowed us to keep the app accessible to a closed group of people without spending too much money on the Enterprise program. However, the Android Private Apps program required us to have G-Suite and Enterprise, which would have cost our clients $25 per user per month, which is rather expensive. Fortunately, by using hybrid technologies, we were able to translate our app into a free-to-use PWA. 
For the back end, we used ASP.Net Web API + MS Sql Server.
Budget management system

Results

Initially, this project had only a few functions and was estimated to take about 700 hours. Its extensive growth during development was astounding. It quickly turned into a giant labor budget platform with many features that were very complex at times. The Staff Wages system was quite a challenge with its many units and modules that needed to operate like clockwork, flawlessly calculating, generating, exporting, and providing a vast array of possibilities for customization and many configurable options for admins and managers. While working on this system, we gained extensive expertise in accounting and finance. We appreciated learning new things that can help us develop better business solutions. 

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