Before implementing the TeamSpirit solution, the human resources department at the Tokyo University of Science was unable to efficiently handle the tabulation of total working hours by all employees manually. The sheer quantity and complexity of hours clocked created a massive burden to the HR department, especially at the end of the month.
The university explored the possibility of developing the system from scratch in-house, an option that would incur great cost and resources.
The TeamSpirit Solution
After implementing the TeamSpirit solution, it is now easy and convenient for both staff and managers to monitor their work in real time. The payroll management for overtime work has also led to greater efficiency.
Managers are now able to check the working hours of their subordinates. Staff are now more aware of how often they are doing overtime work, and are able to regularly check if they are well-rested.
At TeamSpirit, cloud services are updated regularly, so that staff and management do not need to worry about its maintenance or security. This empowers the team to focus on what they do best.
TeamSpirit: Empowering Staff To Visualize Real Time Working Conditions.
The Tokyo University of Science was founded during the Meiji era with the vision of pursuing scientific knowledge and prospering Japan. Undoubtedly one of the most elite universities in Japan, the meritocratic university has produced many competent, ethical and global scholars in Science.
The university is known to give high autonomy to its community. Therefore, it is a place where there are various different ways of working as compared to a private enterprise.
“The uniqueness of universities is that there are various work divisions such as faculty staff, clerical staff, and professional staff. As a result, their salary form is also completely different depending on individual terms and conditions,” says the head of human resources.
Around 3,500 people are employed at the university. Due to the large scale, human resource management can be extremely tedious at times.
“We wanted to be able to monitor the labor conditions of administrative staff in real time as much as possible. This was the catalyst for us when we considered introducing a work management system.”
How can TeamSpirit contribute to this goal? We spoke to the Head of Human Resources department and the information systems department to find out more.
Adopting A World-Class Solution
In order to produce original research results that can contribute to society, the university finds it necessary to promote active exchanges and joint research with researchers in Japan and overseas.
The university frequently finds cases where students attend overseas conferences. Universities in Japan are also increasingly encouraged to actively accept international students.
Therefore, the Tokyo University of Science has requested for a multilingual and multi-device work management system that is accessible anywhere.
“Tokyo University of Science has a vision of becoming the World’s University of Science. We want to fly globally with our research and educational capabilities. This is why a global and world-class work management system is very important to us,” said the Head of Information Systems Department.
Cloud Services Reduce Costs And Improve Resource Allocation
Apart from global-usage, security of the solution is also of utmost importance in the decision to use TeamSpirit. From this perspective, the cloud solution is optimal in terms of resources and costs for the Tokyo University of Science.
“Since we are a Scientific university with a global vision, many of our researchers are already familiar with the VRE (Virtual Research Environment) platform that Salesforce has built. Because of their familiarity with Salesforce, it was easy to introduce TeamSpirit when the software was deployed across the university.
In the past, we used to develop individual systems at each school respectively. The downside of this is that not only are there huge upfront costs needed for installing and developing the system, there is also high operational resources required to manage it.
In this regard, TeamSpirit has the ideal solution as the cloud service is updated regularly. All we have to do is to modify the template to suit our needs. We don’t have to stop the service and do maintenance, so we don’t have to worry about stopping our daily activities.
The overwhelming advantage of having a workforce management system on cloud is that we do not need to build a new technical environment from scratch. In fact, we can even do the installation within a day! This speediness leads to the effective use of limited development resources.”
Graphs Make Understanding Intuitive
Tokyo University of Science has previously managed information about overtime work based on paper submission. When the closing date comes, those application documents come to the human resources department all at once. Digitizing this information on time and properly processing salaries amongst other things can cause a great deal of stress at the end of every month.
In particular, the Human Resource Department has to bear the psychological burden of dealing with sensitive information directly linked to salaries. They are also unable to understand the overall workload of each employee until all documents have been submitted. There is also the concern of time lag of several days before the data was shared with managers.
In this regard, improvement was seen after the introduction of TeamSpirit.
“The payroll for overtime work is, of course, faster. Not only that, now it’s possible to keep track of your work in real time, so that managers can check the number of hours staff work.
The data entered can be easily viewed as graphs, making it easier to visually understand the situation. It’s easier to draw attention to the parties in the department and their managers who are having problems, but I feel that the way they communicate is different because they can show the graph.”
Understanding actual working conditions is one of the most important aspects of maintaining a safe working environment and compliance. Many hope that the work situation can be “visualized” in real-time as much as possible.
In addition, managers can now quickly detect what their organization’s “current way of working” looks like. If they can work out measures before problems arise and put them into practice, managers can then use these smart data to create a better workplace. Visualizing how staff are working then leads to a better working environment.
Some of the staff members who are using the service say that they have noticed improvements to their mental health. Now, they can take a good rest because information about replacement holidays is also displayed on the calendar. As a result, some people say that they can remember to rest.
At universities, there are many cases where people go to work on holidays, such as entrance ceremonies, graduation ceremonies, exams, and open campuses. The TeamSpirit work management systems makes it easier for them to confirm the number of days left on vacation. This encourages more people to take vacation with peace of mind.
In addition, since taking vacation and overtime calculation such as half-day leave and off days are completely captured by the system, the need for Human Resource to manually calculate time off has decreased.
The Importance of User Interface
The Tokyo University of Science started using various functions of TeamSpirit to solve pipeline issues, with premium customer support, since October 2016.
The university received plenty of feedback and evaluation from the Human Resources Department, which is highly encouraging. “We held briefings internally on how to use the product. As a result, almost everyone now inputs their data into TeamSpirit software on a daily basis.”
The user interface of TeamSpirit is designed to be intuitive– as such, even if the user were not IT-savvy, they can also use the software easily. It is clear that the user-friendliness of the system promotes regular use. “During the time of shortlisting software, the ease of use of the user interface was a key consideration, since this is a software we will be using daily,” recalled the head of HR Department.