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Upgrading Kronos

Posted by Michael Turner on Jul 24, 2013 10:46:33 AM

In today’s marketplace, workforce management software is a must for a successful business. Keeping that software up-to-date is as equally important. If you’re contemplating an upgrade to your company’s Kronos software, you most likely have many questions. The answers to some of these questions will partially depend on your reason for considering an upgrade. Some clients upgrade regularly just to stay up-to-date on technology. Some upgrade to add additional features that they need. Others don’t upgrade until the product that they are on is rolling off of support, and they have no other option. As an experienced workforce management implementation specialist, I’ve been through many upgrades in Kronos. Some good, some bad, but there are ALWAYS lessons to be learned.

Here are some of the questions that will be addressed:

Who needs an upgrade?

You! That’s who! Upgrades are a part of the software life-cycle. In the technology world, things are constantly moving and changing and software has to grow and evolve to keep up. When it comes to time and attendance, it’s even more critical when there are changes in regulation, which require your software to adjust to keep up. New features are released and updated in every service pack that comes out. Some of these new features may not apply to you, but some may give you opportunities to improve your timekeeping policies or prepare your company for future growth.

When should I consider an upgrade?

Kronos service packs are released quarterly, and usually monthly if not even more frequently. As the updates in those service packs are cumulative, I generally recommend to my clients that they plan for 1 or 2 service pack upgrades per year. As for the version and “dot” upgrades (i.e. 6.1, 6.2, 6.3), I recommend every 2 to 3 years.

Why is an upgrade necessary?

Why should you upgrade? For many, this question is easy. You need additional functionality or there was bug fix that has impacted you and the only resolution is through an upgrade. For some, the answers to this question are less obvious.

One of the biggest reasons for an upgrade is to stay on a supported casino online version. Kronos has already ended engineering life for 6.0 and 6.1 and all previous versions. That means that if you run into an issue that requires a change to your software, it won’t be fixed on your version.

Additionally, there are incremental changes in the software that may have a big impact for your business down the road. For instance, for version 6.3 the Navigators (formerly NGUI) are now an integrated part of the application, and don’t require a separate install and maintenance process.

Lastly if your business is international, each of the last 3 releases have had significant improvements in multi-lingual support and international pay policy compliance that can streamline your implementation.

Those are just the core Workforce Central enhancements, which don’t include the significant improvements to add-on modules like casino online Absence Manager, Advanced Scheduling and Analytics.

What should I expect from a Kronos upgrade?

A software platform is only as good as the architecture and technology that it’s built on. For many customers who are running older versions of Kronos, they’ve had to keep their old infrastructure in place far beyond its scheduled life to remain on supported hardware, database software, and operating systems. Most IT departments have scheduled life-cycles for server hardware; all vary, but 2% of small businesses (10,000 out of 6 million) will actually have to provide free healthcare to full-time employees online casino or pay the Just figure justin bieber tickets dating, who was in Madame Tussauds in new York city, began to casino online come into disrepair after numerous fans of the singer touched her for years. shared responsibility fee due to ObamaCare. the general rule of thumb is between 4 and 6 years. Recent innovations in hardware and software technology allow todays servers to run exponentially faster and more efficiently than the last generation. With the advent of 64-bit architecture, applications can now take advantage of a larger memory footprint and access more data, faster. That is only the case, however, if the software you’re running is able to take advantage of the new efficiencies. Kronos’ first 64-bit capable release was 6.2 (released October 2010) and the performance gains that I’ve experienced have been significant. Many customers are able to reduce the number of application servers in their environments, or move to virtual servers and get multiple servers on a single piece of hardware.

Also included in the Kronos releases over the last couple of years, have been advancements in core parts of the application. For instance, Connect has moved to Workforce Integration Manager (WIM); which allows you to run interfaces inside of the application rather than from a separate install. Along those same lines, the move from DCM to Workforce Device Manager (WDM) allows management of all of your Kronos clocks without going to a separate application.

What Version Choices should be considered?

One key decision that has to be addressed with any upgrade, is what version to select. As I’ve already mentioned, service packs are release monthly in some cases. The balance in choosing the right version for your organization, comes in getting one that is new enough that it will be supported until you’re ready to upgrade again vs. being on the bleeding edge. I generally recommend to my customers to upgrade to the latest service pack available that has been out for at least a month. In some cases, I recommend choosing a newer service pack because the testing cycle may take you well past the 1 month window. In the past, there was a hesitancy to go to the latest service pack, as there were occasions when one was released and would be retracted weeks later due to issues that were discovered once the release was running on client sites. For the last few years, Kronos’ QA cycle has proved very reliable and there are very few, if any, instances of releases being rescinded.

For further questions, or to talk to a representative on how The WFC Group can help your business with an upgrade or other type of service, please contact us.

Topics: Kronos Workforce Central

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