Headlines: August 9th, 2007



More than 900,000 live records have now been set up on the NHS Electronic Staff Record, making it the World’s largest integrated HR & Payroll system. It provides a service for more than 400 organisations and is on time and on budget to be completed in spring 2008, when it will hold the records of all 1.2 million NHS employees. The system is being delivered by a McKesson led partner consortium, which includes Oracle and IBM. McKesson was founded in the USA in 1833.

ESR is part of a programme of change and innovation within the NHS and is designed to transform the way in which the NHS delivers both HR and Payroll services to its employees. The project is expected to deliver benefits at both national and local levels, to include supporting strategic planning and the devolution of responsibilities to local, front line organisations as well as employee specific benefits including improved payroll information, appraisal and training provision.

Until recently, the UK’s 620 Trusts had been operating with 67 disparate HR and payroll systems each of which record workforce data in a slightly different way. Many Trusts have different rates of pay and procedures for overtime pay and more than 10% of the workforce move between Trusts each year, making it very difficult to accurately track. This lack of streamlined operation was resulting in payroll inaccuracies, out of date HR information and general duplication and inefficiencies due to the required manual re-keying of data. The situation was also preventing the NHS from having clear management information on its workforce and their available skills, hindering effective strategic & operational planning and decision making.

The new system presents the NHS, for the first time, with a solution that integrates both HR and Payroll systems nationally, affording a clear view of its workforce. This will enable the early identification of skills shortages or gaps, which could drive potential recruitment campaigns and the reallocation of administrative staff into more strategic roles. The ESR solution will also allow for substantial time savings through the reduction in the amount of input entries, together with significant cost savings resulting from the closer monitoring by managers of staff absenteeism.