Chris Butland: Big Help Project

We were written to by Privilege HR asking us if we might be interested in accessing their HR software for free. Being absolutely honest, our initial response was, “what’s the catch?”. We have been approached by various HR companies in the past, but there have always been fees and subscriptions involved. As a fairly small charity with a limited budget, we have never been able to afford this. Our HR operations have always been conducted via a myriad of spreadsheets, word docs and pieces of paper – much to my frustration!

“There were no strings at all!”

We agreed to meet with Mary from Privilege HR to talk a bit more about the proposal. To our shock – there were no strings at all! We were offered full use of a brand new HR system free of charge. We could hardly say “yes” quickly enough! As Operations Manager of the charity, I immediately saw the potential time and effort that a system could save us, and also how it could help us to “up our game” in terms of the quality and security of our HR information.

Our meeting with Mary was really positive, and she took a real interest in what we do as a charity, as well as answering all of our questions about the system. Once we’d agreed to move forward, things happened quickly, and within a couple of weeks we were up and running!

“Our staff have taken to it like ducks to water”

The set up was simple – we just needed to upload the key information we wanted on the system via a spreadsheet, and this was then imported automatically into the system. Once we went live, I found it really easy to navigate and tweak the system to how we wanted it. There are various customizable features, depending on who you want to do what on the system. I spent a couple of days getting everything the way we wanted it, and importing up to date stats for things like annual leave and sickness.

And then we went live! To be honest, I was expecting a bit of a reaction from staff with regards to changing over. I thought I’d be bombarded with questions and problems, and planned time in my diary to sit with every member of staff 1-2-1 to introduce them to the HR system. In fact, I’ve hardly had to do anything at all! Staff have really quickly and easily found their way around the system, because it’s so simple to navigate. It’s virtually all self-explanatory – and when there is an issue, it’s often explained via the help buttons in the system itself. Our staff have taken to it like ducks to water, and it’s already making life so much easier.

We particularly love the “Kudos” feature, which is already becoming well used by various staff, who are loving the capability to record their thanks and praise to other staff members.

We are so thankful to Peter and Mary at Privilege HR for giving us the opportunity to use the system, and for all their help in getting us set up. It really is a huge game changer for us.

Chris Butland, Operations Manager