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Kronos’ Workforce Central Payroll and HR Software Review


Workforce Central HR Software Capabilities

The Kronos Workforce Central suite also includes a number of additional capabilities that are typically reviewed during a Payroll/HR software selection process.

Workforce Analytics

Indicative of the holistic business focus that Kronos solutions are designed to address, the range of analytics capabilities that the Workforce Central Suite comes with are impressive. For one, the Workforce Analytics application has been explicitly tailored for Kronos’ Workforce Central. It features 160+ pre-defined Payroll/HR metrics; a separate configurable dashboard and datamart, as well as portal to deliver online analytical processing (OLAP). On top of that, capabilities exist for data warehousing and customized business intelligence queries if needed; all leveraging Crystal Reports as the standard report writing tool (though support is available for most ODBC writers). Of course, not all of these extras are included in the system’s base price, but organizations needing these business-specific options are likely to find the full-service BI (business intelligence) feature sets of Kronos professional services more than adequate to handle any non-standard requirements.

Aside from the specific capabilities that Workforce Analytics can provide out-of-the-box, the system also supports a range of external BI tools (e.g Cognos, Business Objects, Brio, etc.); integrating through XML and SOAP application programming interfaces (APIs). Most importantly though, direct Extract, Transform, and Load (ETL) from the Kronos database is supported—allowing integration from the Workforce Central suite to an already existing BI infrastructure.

Workforce Mobile

Unlike generic mobile interfaces and browser connectivity that some other vendors use, Kronos Workforce Mobile provides native applications that are designed specifically for each platform. That means Workforce Mobile looks and acts like the other applications on your device. If you have a different type of smart phone or feature phone, Kronos offers an intuitive Java-based option to connect to Workforce Central from your mobile device. Still, a cursory review of the system’s functionality reveals that the bulk of effort that has gone into Mobile Workforce revolves around Time and Attendance feature sets. For example, current highlights for the system include capabilities for: employees to submit requests for approvals (i.e. approve timecards, submit punches); conduct transfers; resolve scheduling exceptions; respond to employee requests; and track detailed labor activity. That said, as a testament to the ongoing efforts that Kronos is making for its mobile technology, the company continues to qualify new devices for support on a regular basis. Currently, Apple’s iOS 3.1 & up; Android’s OS 2.x & up; BlackBerry’s OS 4.5.0 & up; and Nokia’s Series 40 3rd Edition & up are supported—all compatible with Kronos’ Workforce Central Suite 6.1.13 & up and the NGUI Server 6.1.2 & up. As such, it would not be surprising to see Kronos expand the administrative capabilities (beyond time and attendance) of Mobile Workforce sometime in the near future.

International HR Software Support

Kronos’ Workforce Central software is a bit of an enigma when it comes to its international support. Multi-currency management, multiple languages, and localization capabilities (including regulatory compliance) are available for numerous countries; however, a comprehensive vantage point on the system highlights that not all applications share the same functionality breadth. Specifically, as near as we can tell, the Workforce HR module is only available in English; and the same goes for Workforce Payroll. On the other hand, the Workforce Central Time & Attendance module is available in English, French, French Canadian, Mexican Spanish, Simplified Chinese, German, Dutch, Brazilian, Portuguese, Japanese, and Italian; with other languages in all likelihood in the pipeline. We’ve already referenced the fact that Kronos is seen as a Workforce Management and Time/Attendance vendor first and foremost, but it would appear from their lack of global capabilities that we might be beyond conjecture on this point. While we know that Kronos is seeking to establish a firmer foundation in the core Payroll/HR and talent management markets, it would seem logical then to assume further international functionality development is forthcoming. However, while future releases may involve additional global aspects, the company has yet to disclose this information.

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