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Business Challenges
National Landscape

Operational Alignment

In order to maximise the benefits to your organisation, it's essential you align your operational processes with recommended best practice, and with your overall expectations from the ESR solution. The information below provides you with a high level overview of the ESR functionality which is relevant in helping you to empower and retain your workforce using ESR.

+ Employee and Manager Self Service

Self Service offers organisations a valuable employee engagement tool, in which employees have the capability to interact with their NHS employment records including updating their personal data, viewing pay and benefit (Total Reward Statements) information, and managing their performance, learning and development. It is widely recognised that if staff feel valued and supported in the workplace by their line managers and the organisation as a whole, this further encourages them to deliver a high level of patient care that supports the values of your organisation.  

Self Service provides organisations with the opportunity to reduce costs on administrative based tasks and supports local strategies around compliance, engagement, and wider productivity and efficiency plans. Self Service also supports paperless office strategies – both reducing associated costs and supporting environmental policies.

Information held within ESR is presented to its users in an easy to read, pre-analysed format, in the form of portlets within the portal or as dashboard reports using Business Intelligence (BI). Such data is available at multiple levels across an organisation, including workforce strategic leaders having access to a ‘Management Dashboard – showing graphical data of key performance indicators in near real-time, on desktops or mobile devices. The portal also supports screen readers, such as JAWs, for visually impaired users. Images and text are recognised and read out to the user.

Organisations have the ability to set Automatic Internet Access for all their workforce, thereby allowing all their ESR users to automatically access their ESR portal remotely, enhancing the usability of ESR and promoting 24/7 access.

+ Online Payslips and P60's

With the introduction of the ESR portal and the payslip portal, the process for your workforce to access their payslips and P60's online has never been easier.

The implementation of online only payslips and P60's will reduce the resources spent on organising and distributing, whilst at the same time reduce the associated data security risks of paper payslips being lost or sent to the wrong person or address.

Benefits include:

  • Easy access to current and previous payslips via the internet and on mobile device
  • Easy access to current and previous P60's via the internet and on mobile device
  • Ability for organisation to set online payslips for workforce
  • Ability for employee to use toggle bar within the payslip portal to go paperless
  • Ability for the employee to download payslips as PDF documents
  • Increase usage of the ESR portal
  • Reduced the risk of misplaced or lost payslips and P60's
  • Ability to access their payslips and P60's from work or home
  • Ability to view payslip is advance of pay day
  • Reduction in waste associated with uncollected payslips and P60's

+ Self Service for Applicants

The deployment of Self Service at a pre-hire stage for applicants enables you to empower your applicants to manage their own e-Learning prior to their start date. ESR can generate an ESR user account automatically at ‘Offer Accepted’ stage in the recruitment process. Once generated the applicant can access ESR to view planned classroom training and to enrol or undertake required training at their convenience as an applicant, thus enabling the applicants to work towards training compliance prior to their start date, thereby streamlining the on-boarding process.

+ Absence Management

ESR allows staff absence to be recorded, monitored and managed with the associated payments and entitlements being processed automatically.  An Organisation can decide to change the way new employees accrue annual leave.  Organisations have the ability to accrue annual leave in calendar days, as opposed to months.  This gives the employee the benefit of a fairer annual leave calculation.

Recording, monitoring and managing the times when your staff are away from work – including sickness, annual leave, special leave and maternity leave within ESR via Self Service or through the core solution means every aspect of calculation of entitlements and payment to employees is processed automatically, whilst minimising the amount of data entry needed.  This is supported by a wide range of reports accessible via Business Intelligence (BI) or via the absence portlet in the Managers Dashboard in Self Service, which enables local monitoring of absence by individual, staff group, organisational hierarchy.

+ Appraisals

The appraisal functionality available through Employee and Manager Self Service enables an organisation to manage the end to end appraisal process online for all their staff.  This includes the ability to access a standard appraisal template or allows the organisation to create a bespoke template using HTML coding. The process includes the reviewing of competencies, objectives setting and enables the electronic transfer of the appraisal between the employee and manager.

Performance Management Plan functionality works with the appraisal functionality and can be used to ensure that organisational objectives are successfully met, tracking them through the entire workforce hierarchy. The Performance Management Plan Admin URP is used to setup and roll out performance management plans to the entire workforce via Self Service, incorporating objective setting as well as appraisal tasks.
 
The Line of Sight feature is a hierarchical representation of the alignment of objectives in an organisation. This feature displays objectives that are aligned or linked to each other in the objectives hierarchy. Line of Sight helps managers and employees to understand how their objectives have been cascaded down through the organisation and the association between objectives.

The functionality also provides an electronic auditable process for the appraiser to withhold increment progression.

+ Nurse Revalidation / Job Planning

ESR provides a robust and tailored NMC Revalidation solution to support staff throughout their nurse revalidation journey using the appraisal functionality with ESR Self Service. This empowers nurses and midwives to take ownership of their own revalidation with support from their managers and the organisation, whilst overseeing regulatory compliance with the NMC.

ESR provides a standard revalidation template with a standard Business Intelligence (BI) report and also provides the ability for organisations to produce bespoke templates and BI reports.  Professional credits can be awarded to training recorded on Oracle Learning Management (OLM), which supports revalidation evidence.

Job Plan commitments can also be entered into ESR and are available to view in Self Service, with data fields available to capture current Job Plan commitments for Consultants and SAS Doctors.  A BI Medical & Dental Dashboard is available to enable comprehensive reporting.

+ e-Expenses

The NHS ESR Programme offers NHS organisations access to electronic expenses at no additional usage cost to its users, enabling online creation of travel and subsistence claims via ESR, which can then be transferred to payroll for processing.  This provides efficiency savings by removing time consuming processes for NHS Payroll teams, and removes manual processes for employees inputting paper forms.

Efficiency and improvements to data quality benefits include:

  • Expenses are processed much quicker
  • Automation of time consuming back office processes
  • Real time status of employee claim status
  • The use of the bi-directional data flow to ESR saves time and ensures accuracy
  • Removes the manual process of inputting submission forms which removes the occurrence of manual errors
  • Removes duplication of claim submissions
  • Provides a comprehensive audit trail which supports NHS Corporate Accountability and also helps prevent fraudulent claims
  • Automated workflow notifications enable rapid claim status updates
  • Reporting functionality allows for better management and control of staff expenses and can identify claim patterns
  • Ensures compliance with NHS specific criteria including vehicle registration and NHS specific expense categories
  • Provides post code recognition for calculation of mileage
  • Allows receipt images/details to be recorded
  • Web based solution means access from any device at any time
  • Ensures expenses policy is adhered to, reducing the time spent checking each claim

+ Talent Management

The Talent Management functionality of ESR provides you with the capability to manage and monitor the careers of your employees. ESR maintains the competences, qualifications, and employment of each staff member and enables you to manage their development reviews and learning.

  • Through ESR Self Service managers and employees can access their competence profile, qualifications, and learning record, enabling up to date information to be available for local reporting and analysis of training needs
  • Complete integration between Oracle Learning Management (OLM), competency functionality and the employee record, enables updates to individual learning and competency records to be maintained easily
  • Local and national competence frameworks including Core Skills Training Framework (CSTF), Care Certificate (CCF), Educator (EDU) and an agreed set of Statutory and Mandatory competence labels are built in, and an employee’s record within these is automatically maintained. Each framework is related to an employee’s training record, competency profile and post requirements 
  • Every employee’s qualifications can be maintained, including A-Level, degree and post-graduate qualifications as well as Qualification Credit Framework (QCF) information
  • The comprehensive reporting suite within ESR allows managers to ensure that the staff development and review process is being maintained, and provides statutory statistical information
  • Learning and competency functionality is integrated into one portlet, meaning that an employee can play e-Learning to achieve compliance without further prompts or decisions points.  The portlet has an easy to view colour bar to highlight if the employee is up to date with their compliance requirements.

+ Business Intelligence (BI) Dashboards and Reports

ESR Business Intelligence (ESR BI) transforms your ESR data into visually relevant and appealing dashboards, accessible on desktops or mobile devices.  It contains a full suite of standard reports across the full range of functionality that ESR provides; enabling processes to be monitored and provides an opportunity to empower management with valuable workforce intelligence in a variety of forms to suit the user. It offers detailed business insight for managers to monitor their teams while directors, and senior managers and leadership teams get an effective overview of the entire organisation, allowing them to plan for future business development.

ESR BI can also be used to produce integrated reports with specific data from other systems, and bespoke reports can be uploaded to the ESR Portal, to ensure that the target audience has quick access to information. Benchmarking and alerting are also key parts of ESR BI enabling the ability to target users and encourage prompt action where required.

Benefits include:

  • A suite of standard dashboards easily accessible thus reducing the reliance on centralised reporting
  • Interactive dashboards allowing users to delve deeper behind the graphs to see the data that sits behind them, thus saving time from producing data in more than one level
  • Easy to use standard dashboards resulting in less time spent educating users
  • Greater understanding of data and workforce requirements at source
  • Improved timeliness of reports resulting in less time spent waiting for reports to complete
  • Reports can be exported into many different formats including PDF & Excel
  • Improved data quality and accuracy
  • Ownership of data at source

+ ESR Portal Dashboards

Workforce information is available through the ESR Portal and its associated Dashboards to your managers and your back office functions, providing an opportunity to empower management with valuable workforce intelligence in a variety of forms to suit the user. It offers detailed business insight for managers to monitor their teams while directors, and senior managers and leadership teams get an effective overview of the entire organisation, allowing them to plan for future business development.

ESR BI can also be used to produce integrated reports with specific data from other systems, and bespoke reports can be uploaded to the ESR Portal, to ensure that the target audience has quick access to information. Benchmarking and alerting are also key parts of ESR BI enabling the ability to target users and encourage prompt action where required.

Benefits include:

  • Manager dashboard with direct links to these areas and the ESR BI reports directly from the Portlets, thus reducing the reliance on centralised reporting
  • Interactive dashboards allowing users to delve deeper behind the graphs to see the data that sits behind them, thus saving time from producing data in more than one level
  • Greater understanding of data and workforce requirements at source
  • Empower your managers to have greater control of their workforce data and targets
  • Improved timeliness of reports resulting in less time spent waiting for reports to complete
  • Reports can be exported into many different formats including PDF & Excel
  • Ownership of data at source
  • View key performance indicators for absence, compliance, and appraisals and the ability to access key career information about their employees through the Talent Profile with the ability to produce PDF reports

+ ESR Notifications

ESR notifications are part of the internal messaging/workflow system within ESR, which can be accessed via the ESR portal. There are a wide range of notifications for employees and managers via Self Service that aim to provide key useful information direct to the user to help them manage their record, or to assist the manager in managing their team.

As well as notifications to employee and managers, the system has a plethora of role-based notifications available to line managers and back office teams to support internal processes and to help maintain the ESR system and its data.

There are 4 ways a notification is generated:

  • System generated notification for information or action to employee or manager
  • System generated notification for information or action to a role holder
  • Notification generated by an action performed by employee or manager
  • Notification generated by an action performed by an ESR professional user i.e. HR, payroll etc.

Some ESR notifications have the ability to be delivered directly to a user’s email account. The notifications that can be sent by email are covered in the document ESR-NHS0252 ESR Email Notifications. There is the ability within some emails to approve, reject or request more information as long as your organisation is using NHS.net or has an NHS Digital accredited email server. There are two levels of email capability dependent on email domain security:

  • Approval and summary emails – available to NHS.net and other approved secure domains
  • Summary email - other email domains outside an approved list

For further information on workflow notifications, please refer to the ESR-NHS0060 Workflow Notifications Guide available in Kbase.

+ ESR HR Best Practice

Back office improvements in productivity and efficiency can be realised by using ESR best practice processes. Underpinning ESR best practice is the timely population of high quality and validated data at the point of entry. This enables accurate management information to be available across NHS organisations to support business planning and decision making. Fundamental to this principle is the embedding of Self Service for managers and employers, ensuring information is entered in as efficient manner as possible and helping reduce paper based process within organisations.

Furthermore, in light of the publication of the Carter Recommendations (2016), organisations will be required to focus on all aspects of the use of data in their daily management of staff. It is our belief that ESR can support information provision to give timely information in key areas, allow analysis and identify trends, and deliver training and identify gaps in workforce training needs. It is crucial therefore that ESR functionality is utilised and that accurate data is entered into ESR using the recommended HR Best Practice.

HR best practice use of ESR can be found in the document ESR-NHS0078 - HR Best Practice Guide, located on Kbase. The guide details the best practice approach to managing the recruitment and HR processes using the ESR system, including:

  • Establishment Control
  • Recruitment processes including use of third party e-recruitment systems
  • Inter Authority Transfer (IAT) process and data transfer
  • New starter process
  • Changes to records
  • Internal leaver processes
  • Terminations
  • Re-Hires
  • Business Intelligence reports
  • Data standards
  • Interfaces

For detailed functional information, case studies and implementation guides please click on the 'Resources' icon located at the bottom of the page under 'Latest Resources'.

To access key information and resources to support Operational Alignment click on the icons below

Business Challenges

Developing your Workforce Retention Strategy requires a detailed level of insight and intelligence about your workforce, all directly supported by using ESR.

  1. Do you have detailed, up to date Workforce Profile information?

  2. Do you know where you recruit/attract employees from?

  3. Do you understand why employees leave your organisation and where they move on to?

  4. Are you offering your employees the right kind of working environment, development, support, and reward?

  5. How accurate is your workforce data and is it sufficient to meet national reporting requirements. How do you monitor the talent profile of your workforce?

  6. How do you record the achievements of your workforce; can you identify those individuals under/over performing in your organisation?

  7. Do you have robust succession plans in place that provide a platform for the most talented employees to grow?

  8. Are your Recruitment/HR back office administrative processes efficient and robust?

  9. Do your employees/managers have access to data/information relevant to them when they need it?

Latest Resources

To discuss the functionality available in ESR, to undertake an ESR Assessment on your current and potential usage, or for further information, advice and support please contact your local NHS ESR Functional Account Manager.