VA extends an HR systems hand to other agencies

Agencies can
use the program
to cut costs.

The Veterans Affairs Department and Andersen Consulting of Chicago will be partners in
deploying human resources and payroll systems to agencies governmentwide.

The partnership is designed to bring users into VA’s HR LINKS program, a delivery
model for human resources and payroll systems, said Sandy Weisman, associate deputy
assistant secretary of VA for financial systems.

VA can sell human resources and payroll systems through its Franchise Funds Program.
Established by Congress in 1996, franchise programs let agencies provide other federal
agencies with administrative services for tasks such as mainframe computing, records
storage, human resources and accounting.

“By contracting with the VA to implement HR and payroll systems, a federal agency
can concentrate on cutting costs and providing its core citizen services,” Weisman

VA is testing its new human resources and payroll delivery systems at department sites
in Washington, upstate New York, Atlanta and Austin, Texas, Weisman said. Among the tools
it is reviewing are products from Lotus Development and PeopleSoft Inc. of Pleasanton,

PeopleSoft produces Enterprise Resource Planning, a software package that streamlines
an organization’s business functions, Weisman said. ERP performs human resources,
accounting, administrative and management functions including ordering, scheduling and
billing, she said.

The VA systems’ employee self-service functions will be rolled out later this
year. Employees will be able to make name and address changes, adjust health and life
insurance coverage and request changes in federal, state and local tax withholding.

The systems’ management functions are in development and will undergo testing in

Personnel offices will be able to classify job positions and initiate personnel
actions, Weisman said.

“We were looking for a contractor that had PeopleSoft expertise,” Weisman
said. “Andersen has significant experience in federal systems development and
implementation, and PeopleSoft’s human resources and payroll systems software


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