June 2020 bulletin

News and reminders

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We have now updated the relevant guidance to reflect the changes to the Staff Request process in support of the Recruitment Protocol.

Key changes to the process include:

  • All Staff Requests to be raised and saved before sending a case for Divisional approval.
  • Staff Request ID to be included on the Protocol Form.
  • New reference data (drop-down list) under “Funding Source”, to indicate whether the post is externally or internally funded or split-funded.
  • New free-text field to record whether the advertisement for the post will be “Internal” or “External”.
  • Staff Request to be submitted for approval/rejection on the system only once the case has been to the relevant panel. Protocol Form and completed Divisional Protocol Checker to be attached to the request prior to submitting.
  • Approver action and comments to note (where applicable) which panel reviewed the case and what the outcome was, or include the reason why the post did not need Protocol approval.

These changes to the process have been introduced primarily to ensure we can meet the reporting requirements of PRAC and Council. Please note that no retrospective action is required in relation to posts that are already in progress through the Protocol. Please follow the new guidance from the first time you raise a Staff Request using the new form – which was live in the system from 10 June.

RQ1 – Creating and Approving a Staff Request has been updated with this guidance. The Staff Request and Contract Decision Matrix has also been updated to include a column indicating whether Protocol approval is needed and guidance on what to include in the approver comments.

Please always ensure that you refer to the HR Support guidance on the Recruitment Protocol, in conjunction with the system guidance, when deciding what action is required in a particular scenario.

The Priority Candidate Support Scheme (PCSS) aims to support the redeployment of priority candidates.

In support of this new scheme, University HR will be maintaining a list of eligible employees who wish to be considered priority candidates for suitable University vacancies. CoreHR is being used centrally to maintain this list. You will now see a new menu item on the 'Select Detail' menu in CorePersonnel, entitled 'PCSS (SA Team Only)' which supports this functionality. You must not take any action to amend or update information contained under this menu item.



As communicated in the April bulletin and messages to Key Contacts, we have now transitioned to online-only payslips & P60s, it is important to ensure employees can access HR Self-Service (HRSS) and view their payslips & P60s.  

When setting up new starters, please ensure that the details on the employee's University card application match those entered on CoreHR. It is particularly important to check the name, which should match that provided on the employee's passport/right to work document in both cases. Where the name or other details do not match, this causes interface issues between CoreHR and the Card system, which can prevent their subsequent setup on HRSS.  

Once your new employee has received their Single Sign On (SSO), you should ask them to check they are able to access HRSS. If they receive an error message (e.g. 'something has gone wrong, no employee mapping found'), you should provide the employee's details (including SSO) to the HRIS Support Centre for resolution. Please ensure all queries come to us via a CoreHR user, not from the employee directly.  

Some internal applicants have been unable to complete applications via the Internal Jobs Board, due to the Additional Questions not showing as complete on their application.

We have identified that this issue results from the Assign Question Category section being updated via the portal. As a workaround, if you wish to update the Assign Question Category section for a vacancy, you should do so in the back office rather than in portal. We have updated the How-to Guide Preparing a Vacancy for Advertising to reflect this process amendment. We have also added this issue to the Known Issues page and have logged it with our supplier, CoreHR. Any issues with existing vacancies should be referred to hr.systems@admin.ox.ac.uk.

Projects update

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In light of the disruption caused by Covid-19, we are revising our timescales for the CoreHR upgrade and migration of Personnel to the Portal (phase 2.2), which was originally planned for June. We are currently working with departmental and divisional colleagues and our supplier, to find a workable go-live date in early autumn. We are also exploring how best we can prepare users for the upcoming system changes whilst minimising the impact at this busy time. We will shortly communicate confirmed dates and information about the specific impact of this go-live on departments.   

Refining our training approach 

In response to phase 2.1 feedback, we have reviewed and reduced our eLearning materials, which will now focus on high-level processes only. These will be complemented by support documents, to assist users in completing day to day system tasks. We aim to release support material for phase 2.2 as early as possible to allow users adequate time to prepare for the system changes.    

For more information about the project, please visit our project website.   

New CoreHR Reporting tool – go-live confirmed 

We are pleased to inform you that we are planning to launch the new HR reporting tool on 22 July. The new tool, simply called ‘HR Reporting’, will replace Oracle Discoverer. HR Reporting offers a modern user interface, improved navigation, and easier exporting to Excel.    

HR Reporting is very straightforward to use so training will not be required. Instead, a ‘How-to’ guide has been created to support users. Please note that the reports will remain unchanged, and simply hosted on a different platform.   

We will be in touch with users within the next couple of weeks to provide further details and instructions on how to access the new tool.

Payslips and P60s are officially paperless! 

The transition to online-only payslips and P60s is now complete. Please continue to direct employees to the HR Self-Service website for support or to log in to their account: www.ox.ac.uk/hrss. For queries related to recording exceptions in advance of June payday, please email corehrupgrade@admin.ox.ac.uk.  

Sending emails marked ‘private’ to a shared mailbox 

Please note that emails sent to a shared mailbox that have been marked as ‘private’ will not appear to the recipient. If you are sending an email to a shared mailbox, please bear this in mind before adding a sensitivity tag.  If you have recently sent a ‘private’ email to a shared mailbox and have not received a response, we recommend you resend the email without the tag. 

The Focus Programme’s Casual Payroll project is being closed. The project has enabled several improvements to the Casual Payroll Spreadsheet, as well as a similar spreadsheet used by TSS. These changes not only allowed for easier recording of hours and pay data, but have also enabled a more uniform approach to the recording of certain aspects of the hours and pay data, thus improving the University’s ability to demonstrate compliance in this area. There is now a wider understanding of the Casual Payroll process across all parts of the University, with clearer guidance being developed with respect to payment for preparation time.

The project team had hoped to be able to amend the Casual Payroll Spreadsheet further, to allow for automated generation of holiday pay data, but a complex interaction of policy, legislative, technological and operational reasons meant that it was not possible to proceed with this set of changes. However, we are particularly pleased that we have been able to build a business case to explore what many of you requested - the implementation of a standardized timesheet system robustly integrated with payroll. A project piloting CoreHR’s time-sheeting functionality with the Saïd Business School has now received approval. This will enable casual workers to submit time-sheet information directly into CoreHR via Employee Self-Service. Managers will then review submitted time-sheets within Manager Self-Service and approve for processing by the Payroll Team. This approach will eliminate the need for the casual payroll spreadsheet and should greatly reduce administrative time for HR/line managers.

All being well, we hope the pilot will complete towards the end of this year, and that subject to IT Committee approval, further work to roll this out to the rest of the University might be under way in Hilary term next year. In addition, central HR will continue to explore ways in which more centralised support could be provided to departments of the University for certain aspects of registering casual workers.

Many of you committed your time and effort to the project. You attended workshops, you provided feedback, you collected valuable data on how long different tasks take, and you helped with testing. The project team would like to thank all of you who participated in this work: it is because of your efforts that the project was able to deliver the benefits we have so far, and we wish the timesheet project team every success.

Payroll corner

The Payroll Team has been working from home since mid-March, and like many others, will continue to do so for at least the next few months. This new way of working brings with it frustrations, such as connectivity issues and communication problems, that everyone else is currently experiencing. All aspects of payroll work are therefore taking longer to process. However, payday and the dates for the final payrun absolutely cannot be moved, and this means that the published Payroll deadlines must also stay as they are. Over the last three months, many departments have asked for extensions for various reasons.  This puts the Payroll Officers, who are already struggling to cope with their day-to-day work, under immense pressure.  Please therefore stick to the published deadlines, which can be found on the Payroll webpage and the Payroll Cycle document


Update from the HR Analytics Team

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Report name  Action required 
HRINFO01 Data Quality Validation 2019-20 

Clear validation errors for all employee appointments active for any period from 1 August 2019. 

As a data load relating to REF is required at the end of June if time is short focus on clearing errors in relation to Target End Dates being missing or in the past. 

HRINFO01 data quality validation report web page gives additional details about the report. 

Additional guidance on clearing errors whilst working remotely during these challenging circumstances is provided on the clearing errors web page

HRINFO20_Casual Worker Data Quality Validation 2019-20 

Clear validation errors for all casual worker and casual teaching appointments active for any period from 1 August 2019 in a timely manner. 

HRINFO20 Casual worker data quality validation report gives additional details about the report. 

HRINFO21 Vacancy and applicant data quality 2019-20 

Clear validation errors for all vacancies posted externally on or after 1 August 2019 in a timely manner. 

For additional details about the report and guidance on adding missing Applicant Status history, please refer to HRINFO21 Vacancy and applicant data quality report

For guidance on making the indicated changes to clear the data anomalies, highlighted red and amber in the report, please refer to data quality in the first instance. 

If you need assistance making data changes or running any of the above reports contact the HRIS Support Centre hr.systems@admin.ox.ac.uk or tel: 01865 (2)87900. 

Contact the HR Analytics team on hris.dataquality@admin.ox.ac.uk if you have any queries relating to these reports; give the Person Reference number (and appointment ID if the individual is on more than one contract) for queries relating to appointment records; provide the Vacancy ID for queries relating to clearing errors from the HRINFO21 report. 

The ‘HRINFO02_AthenaSWAN Potential Staff Data’ readiness report is available now until 31 July. The report allows departments to review their Athena Swan data before the extract is taken for the 2020 Tableau data refresh. 

How to prepare: 

  • It will be beneficial to run and clear all anomalies from your ‘HRINFO01 Data Quality Validation’ report before reviewing the ‘HRINFO02 AthenaSWAN Potential Staff Data’ report. 

  • Ensure that all parental leave action and reason codes have been entered for all relevant employees, including recording return from parental leave. 

  • Request access to the Tableau staff data dashboards for anyone without access who will require it for 2020. 

Please check the HR Analytics team’s website’s Athena pages for updates. Further details will follow in the July bulletin. 


The ‘Academic Title’ UDF is available to report on in PERDEP22_Academic Title.  

The QRG: IP12 Academic Title http://www.admin.ox.ac.uk/media/global/fileicons/pdf.gif(451kb) contains a matrix in the Appendix which indicates who is responsible for updating academic title information and in which circumstances. Responsibility lies with the Divisional HR Team for those appointed to a Statutory Professorship or with the HRIS Data Services for Titular Professors awarded via the Recognition of Distinction process. Titular Professors awarded via the Senior Appointments Panel are keyed by departments and divisions. Even if the team responsible for data entry given in the matrix is not the ‘Departmental or Divisional CoreHR administrator’ the department or division should instruct and follow up with the relevant team if academic title information is missing or incorrect. 

We advise that you: 

  • run the PERDEP22_Academic Title report to identify missing/incorrect information 

  • familiarise yourself with the titles, their conferral process and the team responsible for data entry 

  • add/correct the information where you have responsibility to add or update the Academic Title UDF 

  • instruct and follow-up with the HRIS Data Services where amendments are to be made by this team 

As the titles of Statutory Professor and Titular Professor in the ‘Academic title’ UDF are used in central reporting to place employees into the Academic Professor group for Athena SWAN, it is important to check that all academic titles are recorded correctly in accordance with the QRG. This will enable accurate reporting in Athena SWAN applications. Correct recording of the ‘Titular Professor’ title also assists in the annual HESA staff returns. Therefore, it is important that you review your data regularly and check that no titles are missing.  

Additional guidance on clearing errors from your HRINFO01 data quality report whilst working remotely during these challenging circumstances is provided on the clearing errors web page. This includes steps on how to access the CV from the recruitment portal which is useful as a source for determining previous HEI employment, immediately previous employment, and highest qualification held. 

Please continue to email hris.dataquality@admin.ox.ac.uk with particular data entry difficulties and/or areas of confusion. The HR Analytics team will collate responses and work to provide answers in hints and tips sections on our web pages. 

New and updated documents and reports

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PERDEP91 furlough monitoring 
  • Category, Sub Category and Division added. 

  • The report now includes Grade and Point (for the time the report is run) and FTE.  Please note that using this information can only provide an approximate estimate of financial impact in relation to furlough. Actual claim amounts are calculated and administered by the Finance Department.


HRIS user support

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To accommodate the additional day’s leave that has been granted to all University staff, the Support Centre will be closed on Friday 26 June. CoreHR will be available to users and applicants during this time

Support for job applicants
A message will be placed on the University’s Jobs and Vacancies webpages advising applicants of the office closure with the dates as above. We will however be monitoring the use and availability of the online recruitment system. 

Contact details for the team are:  hr.systems@admin.ox.ac.uk or tel: 01865 (2)87900.

Opening hours: Monday - Friday, 8.30 - 17.00 

This month's deadlines

Please also refer to the July_2020_payroll_cycle_diagram.pdf

Mon 22 June - 5pm June supplementary payroll deadline Any changes which affect payroll but do not require payroll action/ approval, must be entered and approved within the department by this deadline in order to be included in this month's payroll run.
Tue 23 to Wed 24 June No user input Users cannot enter data into the personnel module or use menu options under "Core|Personnel>Maintenance".
Fri 3 Jul Staff request deadline For Staff Requests which do not require grading, any requests received by this deadline will be processed by midday on Wednesday 8 July. Staff Requests received after this deadline are not guaranteed to be processed by the standard payroll deadline. The usual turnaround timings for gradings apply (ten working days).
Mon 6 Jul Casual payments deadline  Details of casual payments must be received by this deadline in order to be included in this month's payroll run.
Wed 8 Jul HRIS Data Services users only: Data Services admin deadline Data Services payroll forms should be submitted to the HRIS Data Services team by this deadline. This is to ensure sufficient time for the team to process them for the payroll deadline and resolve any queries.
Wed 8 Jul Support requests for Jul Requests for assistance associated with actions for this month's payroll deadline should be received by the HRIS Support Centre by this date. This is to ensure that sufficient time is available for the team to address your queries.

Fri 10 Jul - 5pm

Jul payroll deadline All changes which require payroll action/approval must be entered and approved within the department by this deadline in order to be included in this month's payroll run.
Thu 23 Jul Jul supplementary payroll deadline Any changes which affect payroll, but do not require payroll action/ approval, must be entered and approved within the department by this deadline in order to be included in this month's payroll run.