An integrated software system solution for payroll (PR) and Human Resources Management (HRMS) does not necessarily mean the systems share a single database. Often, payroll will be a hosted solution and human resources will be local. Obviously the two systems do not share the same database.
The two applications are integrated by the downloaded/uploaded files yet they do not share a single database. Theoretically this seems like a good idea; but, after implementing the theory the results are frequently disappointing. Take a simple thing like an employee address change to demonstrate a problem.
Employee addresses are located in both the hosted and local databases. A decision must be made as to where users will enter address changes and users must remember to always perform that function on the chosen system. Say the hosted system is mandated to be the entry point of address changes. One day (and it will happen) a user forgets and enters the change on the local database. When the update file is downloaded from the hosted system the local address change gets replaced with the unchanged hosted system data.
Now if address changes were all that you needed to be concerned with that wouldn’t be so bad. Unfortunately the two databases are going to contain a plethora of duplicated information - phone numbers, contacts, marital status, transfers, and the list goes on. The problem is further compounded by keeping track of what duplicated data gets entered where. About the only way to overcome this is to just do double work and enter the changes in both systems and don’t even try to integrate the separate databases. If you’re thinking of doing both upload and download then you will be traveling down a pathway that is fraught with even more trouble.
Today you can find software solutions where all their application modules share a single database. You can purchase a full suite of solutions or start with the basics and add on as your needs expand. Start with payroll (PR) software and then add human resources (HR/HRIS/HRMS), time and attendance (T&A), recruiting (applicant tracking), employee self service (ESS), benefits management, and open enrollment. Having all your employee resource management applications on the same database is the best solution.