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Kronos’ Workforce Central Payroll and HR Software Review

3.5 stars Average rating: 3.5 (from 144 votes)

Kronos Sweet Spot & Competitor Solutions

Kronos Workforce Central Sweet Spot
Although Kronos does not specify an ideal employee population for its Workforce Central suite of software (including its payroll module), the best fit is from the middle market (broadly defined as 500-2500 employees) all the way up to that of larger enterprises (2500+ employees). As far as vertical markets are concerned, the ideal sectors targeted by Kronos are retail, healthcare, government, hospitality, and manufacturing; however, the company also has significant penetration in Energy, Public Sector Administration, Financial Services, Gaming, Higher Education, K-12 Education, Life Sciences, Logistics, and Public Safety.

Current marquee clients leveraging Kronos software include: Best Buy, Costco, CVS, Staples, Kroger, PetSmart, Securitas, Sports Authority, Yum Brands, and Starbucks. Each of these brands has a high proportion of hourly workers in the workforce – a testament to how well-suited Kronos’ payroll and HR software is to this specific market.

When you’re looking for a payroll solution, shortlist Kronos if:

  • Your business is within one of Kronos' supported vertical markets
  • Your workforce has a high concentration of hourly and/or contingent workers
  • Your organization is already leveraging multiple Kronos products for workforce management

Alternative Solutions
Payroll and HR software buyers may wish to look further afield if:

  • Your organization needs to manage global payroll through a single solution
  • You are seeking deeper integration into additional ERP capabilities like financials, CRM, etc.
  • Your company needs the flexibility and innovation that comes from a multi-tenant SaaS solution

Kronos Competitors

In the general business software marketplace, despite the fact that Kronos is considered a non-ERP provider, the bulk of Kronos' competition is in the ERP realm and includes SAP, Oracle and Infor. More specifically, with regard to payroll (and wider HRMS systems) Kronos also competes with Ceridian, Ultimate Software, and NuView. Most notably though from a competition standpoint is that Kronos’ key obstacle remains their original priority of offering a best-of-breed time and attendance solution. Although the company compass has shifted significantly towards payroll, core HR, and talent management, many potential clients may still prefer the leading HR solutions—a fact that Kronos must work diligently on to overcome.

Concluding Remarks

Kronos' track record (mainly in the field of workforce management) speaks for itself; however, the very technology that set Kronos apart during its formative years has the potential to stifle future growth if the company isn't careful. Client organizations coming to Kronos payroll as existing users of its workforce management solutions may unwittingly assume that the "command-and-control" structure is fundamental to Kronos’ philosophy across the board and given the trend for unifying HR, payroll and other business technology, the company may need to work harder to demonstrate that its payroll and other solutions offer something more attuned to the modern workplace. The large customer base that exists has tremendous potential for the company to up-sell and cross-sell its other solutions, but is by no means a given.

All in all, Kronos' Workforce Payroll is a solidly performing solution that deserves to be judged in the same class as that of its major competitors. The simplicity and ease of both design and use will be highly appealing to many, regardless of industry sector and for those organizations managing hourly-wage workforces, the Workforce Central suite may well be the right answer.

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