Interior HR team will test custom SAP applications

Interior HR team will test custom SAP applications

By Tony Lee Orr

GCN Staff

The Interior Department recently began a six-month pilot of human resources software that includes payroll and personnel functions, and links disparate department divisions.

Department officials signed an agreement with ICRC Energy Inc. of Arlington, Va., to customize a commercial human resources system for federal use.

Koniag Inc. of Anchorage, Alaska, ICRC's parent company, subcontracted with SAP Public Sector and Education Inc. of Washington to complete the work.

The companies and Interior are working to determine whether SAP's commercial product, SAP R3 Version 4.6B, can meet federal requirements in nine functional areas, said Dennis Lock, chief of the Applications Management Office of Interior's National Business Center.

Step by step

The work will be done in three phases, Lock said. During the first three months of the program, which began in February, the companies will try to determine how to make SAP R3 meet Interior's requirements.

Phase 2 will focus on configuring the human resources tool to operate in three of the nine functional areas, Lock said.

The final phase will be a formal evaluation of the pilot to figure out whether the software is effective, he said.

SAP programmers will use an advanced business application programming language contained in the off-the-shelf product to modify the application, said Bill Janssen, a company spokesman.

'Most of the functionality is out of the box,' Janssen said. 'Within R3 is the capability of developing new programs if the customer can use R3.'

The system will track employment applications, and employee and personnel actions, he said.

'It is a fully integrated system,' Janssen said. 'Later, if they want to use the financial modes involved in the application, they would be integrated as well.'

Interior will train some employees to use the new system so staff members can determine whether it would be useful, Lock said.

Users will access the service via any standard Web browser.

Online host

Three Compaq ProLiant DL380R servers running Microsoft Windows NT 4.0 will host the Web pages. The servers are dual 550-MHZ Pentium IIIs with 2G of RAM, 60G hard drives and 100-BaseT network interfaces.

Microsoft Internet Information Server software will serve up the Web pages using SAP's Internet Transaction Server to tie into Interior's back-end database and applications.

The database and applications will run on three Sun Microsystems Enterprise 3500 servers running Solaris 8.

The Sun servers have dual 400-MHz UltraSparc II processors with 4G of RAM, 60G hard drives and dual 100-BaseT network interfaces.

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