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How Harmony Took Back Control Over Payroll

Jonathon Shipton
May 25, 2022
7 Min Read
How Harmony Took Back Control Over Payroll

Harmony is an early learning and childcare provider established in 2017. Originally founded by a husband and wife duo, who were inspired by their journey with their own children, Harmony has grown from a small grouping of child care centres to service 11 communities across Queensland and New South Wales. Harmony prides itself on its unique approach to child care, with each centre operating as a community hub that children feel is an extension to their own home.

Before foundU, payroll at Harmony required lots of manual data entry at a centre level. It was also prone to human error, with regular discrepancies with hours worked and time off in lieu. They wanted an end-to-end payroll and scheduling package to streamline payroll at a centre level, mitigate the corrections they needed to make each fortnight and get greater oversight of their workforce.

Angela Scerri, Payroll Manager and People & Culture Coordinator at Harmony, reports that foundU has allowed them to do exactly that.


Human error, discrepancies and little oversight

Harmony manages 450 employees across 11 early learning and child care centres.

Before implementing the foundU platform, Harmony ran a fortnightly payroll that required lots of manual data entry by centre staff, offered no visibility of scheduled hours and was prone to human error, with regular discrepancies with hours worked and time off in lieu. 

"It was taking centre staff a crazy amount of time to complete payroll each fortnight," Angela said.

"Centre staff manually entered payroll hours into spreadsheets, which were then sent to our payroll department who copied it into our accounting software. Because it was so manual, there were often errors which required our payroll department to spend time organising corrections, refunds and deductions."

Centre Managers also say their payroll process had a big impact on centre staff, who had no oversight of their entitlements and couldn't easily manage their own data.

"It didn't offer any transparency for employees to track their payslips, and because it was all manual and printed, there was no way for them to assess their entitlements," Angela said."

"Making changes to personal and financial details was also a challenge - it was a four-step process with requests being escalated three times before being sent to the payroll department for processing. And often confirmation would then sit until the following pay cycle, when it was then actioned. It was just too slow."


The only end-to-end solution

Realising they needed an end-to-end scheduling and payroll package, Harmony began looking for a solution that could streamline their business.

"We looked at a range of companies during the scoping phase, but these were only rostering solutions and still needed to be integrated with a payroll system," Harmony's Commercial Manager said.

"foundU was the only end-to-end platform that we identified that could meet the payroll requirements we had. We validated this through questions to foundU and various customer reference phone calls."

After settling on foundU, Harmony ran a pilot foundU system to iron out any issues before rolling it out to their early learning centres within six months.

"We had regular meetings with the foundU implementation team, who walked us through and help resolved any teething issues," Angela said. 

"The customer support was incredibly responsive, and we had amazing help from our implementation manager."


One-stop-shop with greater control

Implementing foundU has enabled Harmony to take back control over their payroll and scheduling.

"foundU is a one-stop-shop for payroll and rostering," Angela said.

"I like that I can lock down budgets, if required, for management of wages. I also like that I can approve and decline shifts easily, that I can send out communications to all employees with touch of a button.

"I like I can access this remotely and complete when required, as our centre staff are often pulled in many different directions. I really like I can upload documents as required and change them out easily."

"We recently ran an internal survey asking centre directors about how things had improved since implementing foundU - they noted that the platform has saved them considerable time when it comes to preparing payroll each fortnight."

Angela also says that the support of the customer success team has been invaluable for Harmony.

"The support is always fantastic - we feel like we're never alone," Angela said.

"In my previous role, we could never have voice-to-voice conversations with customer support, we could only get very brief email support. The customer success team at foundU have always been fantastic and we appreciate them so much."

For other early learning and child care businesses like Harmony, Angela says choosing foundU is a no-brainer.

"If your business is looking for an easy onboarding system, a well-managed rostering system and an efficient payroll system, choose foundU."


Want to know more about foundU? Book a Demo.