Novopay News: Using online timesheets

News for School Payroll Staff


15 August 2014

A message from Education Payroll Services

Welcome to the latest edition of Novopay News. You have likely heard Minister Joyce's announcement about the decision to transfer the schools' payroll service to a Government-owned company in October of this year. An announcement like this no doubt raises questions about what this means for you and your school.

Most importantly, be assured you will see no change to the tools, systems and services available to you during this time. The forms and contact numbers you use and Novopay Online (NOL) will remain unchanged. It is still going to take time to resolve some of the school payroll issues you have been experiencing but we remain committed to building on service improvements made over the past year, like the addition of the Employee Summary to your SUE report, and enhancements to our service delivery model.

Another resource that remains constant is our Education Payroll Advisors (EPAs). They work closely with school administrators each day, and have a unique perspective on the issues you are facing. Our EPAs are here to assist you by providing targeted support and they love a good timesaving tip or two. In this edition they provide their advice on the value of the online timesheet function in NOL. The function is easy to learn and can save you time. And with End of Year (EoY) just around the corner, it's a great time to get more comfortable using NOL, if you aren't already. Read below for valuable tools and resources to help you get started using online timesheets-or as a review for those of you who have already mastered them.

Happy reading

Rebecca Elvy
Associate Deputy Secretary, Education Payroll Services

Using online timesheets in NOL

Did you know- on average there are 40,000 timesheets processed in each pay period? 

Using online timesheets is simple, saves you time, and puts you in control of your school's information. When you enter timesheets online you can edit and validate your entries before you submit them. You can check them the very next day on your school's transaction report for extra assurance. And there is less chance of making errors than with paper forms as there is no chance of double entry of data or misreading hand-writing.

Are you already using online timesheets? If so, we hope these tips and tricks will improve your experience. Are you keen to try using online timesheets for the first time? Below is all the information you need to get started, along with some words of encouragement from schools that already use them:

"One of the best and simplest parts of Novopay"
 Carolyn Driscoll, Executive Officer, Sacred Heart College 

 "Direct, quick and secure records"
Craig Braun, Executive Officer, Hutt Valley High School

 "Once you're familiar with the [timesheet] tab easy to navigate through it. Really efficient."
Kohi Manukau, Administrator, Kaikohe East School

 

How to fill out online timesheets in NOL

Training Services has put together a step-by-step guide for entering timesheets online and a Timesheets Quick Reference Guide, both available on the Novopay website. Used together, these two documents cover all bases and provide you with the basics you need to get started.

If you require more support, Training Services also provide a course dedicated to online timesheets entry. To book, visit the Training Services website and login using your personal Training Services username and password, following the steps below. If you are new to the Training services website, or have forgotten your username or password, you can reset them via links on the login page.

To book training:

Login> Browse Training (left hand side menu) >Courses >Select 'Novopay Timesheets' >Choose your preferred session> Add Booking.

Training Services will send you a follow up email to confirm your booking and outline any system requirements you may need to verify in advance of your training course.

If you have any questions or would like assistance to make a booking, please contact Training Services at Training.Services@minedu.govt.nz or on 04 463 0928.

Online timesheet tips

Whether you are new to online timesheets or consider yourself a seasoned pro, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • To identify My Timesheet employees in NOL, print your Appointment Summary report. Timesheet employees will be marked with a 'T' at the end of the Employment Status column. To find this report go to My School > Appointment Details >Appointment Summary >Find All Staff.
  • For normal timesheet employees, use the SALT pay code in the Pay Code column.
  • Save and Validate: The 'Save' command saves the data entered into the timesheet. The 'Validate' command checks the data entry for errors and/or incompatible entries.
  • Delete and Save and Clear: The 'Delete' command removes a row. 'Save and Clear' saves the data entered and clears the row.
  • If the timesheet is correct and you want to enter the following week's timesheet at the same time, click the "Copy" icon at the beginning of the row, which will give you a duplicate row. You can then amend the relevant information.
  • If at any stage you realise you have entered data incorrectly, just click on the "Remove Row" icon at end of row.
  • If you are happy with the timesheet and want to enter another timesheet for a different employee, save what you've done so far, click on the "Add blank line" button and a new row will appear.
  • You can check timesheet history to ensure submitted timesheet information is correct. My HR>Pay Details>Timesheet History/Find.
  • The on-screen print tab is currently disabled. To get around this, do a 'print screen' before validating/posting to keep for your records. To do this, press the "Print Scrn' key on your PC's keyboard (to the right of the F12 key) and paste the screenshot ('CTRL + V) into a blank Word document. Then choose 'CTRL + P' to print.

If you have timesheet tips that can help other administrators please send them to us at Education.Payroll@minedu.govt.nz with 'Timesheet Tips' in the subject line.

School payroll service transitioning to government management

On Wednesday 30 July we told you about the decision to transfer the management of the schools' payroll service to a Government-owned company. We believe this decision is in the best interests of all parties involved including schools, their staff and you. It paves the way for a more stable and simple payroll service that is sustainable into the future. 
 
Some of you have since asked us how things will change when the transfer to Government management takes place on 17 October 2014.

A transition programme is in place to manage all aspects of the shift. Current service levels, staffing and processes will be maintained throughout the transfer with the full support of Talent2. There will be no change for you using the service. This means the forms, systems and tools you currently use will remain unchanged. Access to NOL and the Service Centre will be available as usual.

Once the transfer is complete, we can accelerate our work on the substantial improvement programme that's already underway including improving the readability of pay slips and Staff Usage and Expenditure (SUE) reports, and resolving outstanding leave issues.

We have committed to keeping you informed and will provide regular updates in subsequent newsletters. For more information, here is the media release, outlining the changes, from the Minister Responsible for Novopay, Steven Joyce: http://beehive.govt.nz/release/government-owned-company-take-over-school-payroll.

Service Delivery Model Workshops

One of the key recommendations from the Ministerial Inquiry into the Novopay project, completed last year, was to "re-examine the service delivery model for the schools' payroll service, to ensure that it is sustainable and affordable in delivering quality services to the boards of trustees and their employees". This review began in June of last year and included involvement from boards of trustees, principals, payroll administrators, sector associations, union representatives and other third parties.

As a result of the review, a number of changes are planned. These include improvements to the Novopay website, the Service Centre, and intensive support services.

We recently held sector workshops in Christchurch, Wellington and Auckland. The purpose of these workshops was to provide an overview of the payroll service delivery model review findings and to gather input and feedback on proposed self service and local service improvements.

Feedback from the workshops will be incorporated into the service delivery model design and put forward for approval and implementation.  A second round of workshops will be held with schools in September to discuss and receive feedback on other aspects of the service delivery model design.

Feedback

We're always keen to hear your feedback. If you have suggestions for subsequent newsletters, please continue to email us at education.payroll@minedu.govt.nz.

For payroll-related queries please contact the Novopay Service Centre at support@novopay.govt.nz.
 
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