User in the Spotlight – Yelana Pritchard from Teekay Shipping
Date: Tuesday 5th February 2019
Interviewee: Yelana Pritchard, Installation Personnel Officer, Teekay Shipping
Interviewer: Stacey Magee, OPMS
Questions by: Tiiu Tiisaar, General Manager, OPMS
It was difficult to choose the topic for this interview as the OPMS implementation at Teekay Shipping has had numerous highlights. We started working with Teekay in November 2017 and since then, they have implemented pretty much every key module OPMS offers. Yelana Pritchard has been the leader of this project and she has seamlessly become an OPMS Super User.
One meeting I had with Yelana is more memorable than others, our task was to figure out how to tailor the payroll interface functionality OPMS offers for Teekay’s requirements. What we had at the time wasn’t flexible enough, the employee and pay period selection had to become significantly more advanced. I started the meeting with Yelana having no plan in mind, yet, miraculously, in less than 30 minutes we had it figured out and ready to be passed on to the Developers. I felt very fortunate to work with inspiring people!
The goal of OPMS’s payroll interface module is to streamline data entry within the organisation. The rosters entered to OPMS are mapped to payroll elements and subsequently exported to the payroll system. Generally, this sees reduced time spent in processing payroll and improved accuracy. I’m curious to find out how the new process is going for Teekay.
Yelana and I worked together at what was previously known as OMS (now Atlas). At the time, Yelana was working for the OMSA branch of the business and she arrived towards the end of my time with the company.
It is exciting to be dealing with her again at Teekay, a company I have dealt with for a long time also, as she brings great energy to every role she is in. She is very proactive and progressive in her approach to the system, often coming up with new ideas on how Teekay can better utilise OPMS in their business. It’s wonderful to have her as a Super User.
Q: What key benefits have the new process delivered for Teekay?
A: Time is by far the biggest factor. So much less time is spent getting the information to Payroll. I used to work on a spreadsheet and filter the roster within this while also looking 6 weeks in the past to capture all of the relevant changes for the required pay period. It was a very visual and manual task in that I had to go through each entry and compare information. A lot of the checking relied on me knowing information instead of having it standardised, in that respect, I was the only person able to run payroll which made it quite restrictive. The inability to make comments on our payroll spreadsheet was an issue as it was a shared document across multiple companies. So, we had to keep information in multiple sources to then be reconciled at payroll time.
Adding in Campaigns has been a big win also, each month a new one gets added which has helped with reconciliation, previously it was taking up to an hour per query between myself and Payroll in Sydney.
Q: You are based in Perth and your payroll gets processed in Sydney. You had to “sell” the new process to your payroll department. How did they embrace the change?
A: They were pretty good about it, at first wary. We asked them to provide their report for ADP and got OPMS to extract the data in the same format. They were then satisfied that it would be a successful transition to this new process.
Q: What advice would you give to other companies using OPMS – is it worthwhile setting up an interface between rostering and payroll?
A: Absolutely if they don’t want to spend time reporting. I’m all about removing manual entry and human error where possible. This then frees up my time to deal with all other queries and daily tasks. Why not automate a task if you can? I had never had to do Payroll in any previous roles so really no idea what the interface would take. It was so easy and what was included in the reports was very easy to read and understand.
Q: You enjoy using Logistics Manager, a component very close to our Developers’ hearts. What do you like about this module?
A: Love it. I use it to bulk change booking status or drag a travel leg to another employee. Also, I like that I can search for a hotel to find all the names and dates people have stayed in particular hotels.
Likewise, being able to search how many flights have been booked on the same path (i.e. BNE-PER) as Qantas had advised that our bookings were at 0% which obviously meant their system was missing something.
The usability of this screen is great and it’s an easy way to view all of our bookings as a snapshot, making it easier to highlight potential errors in bookings and the likes.
Q: As a Super User at Teekay in a small team with a busy workload, how do you find managing the demands of being our point of contact within your company?
A: It’s fine, I don’t feel it negatively impacts my day-to-day as OPMS are good to deal with.
Q: How do you manage the updates that OPMS do when we roll out improvements and new versions?
A: We do some testing and training with OPMS before the rollouts, it’s more that we will notice if something isn’t the same as before when we run it. This is generally a moment of “we needed this yesterday” but the OPMS support team are always super quick with the turn around time to fix these little oversights. The upgrades and improvement work well.
Q: In your experience using different systems in different companies/industries, what are the main differences between other operating systems and OPMS?
A: Hard for me to compare as I was doing different roles at other companies, however, the support is very different with OPMS. Ease of getting hold of the same person on the same issue, willingness to prioritise even though there’s a lot going on. Good turnaround time with improvements and queries.
Thanks Yelana, you have been brilliant at communicating your requirements, hence we have achieved so much together at a relatively short time.
Thanks a lot for your guidance and help in continuously improving OPMS!