Peeriosity Insights: Recent Research Findings Summarized insights. To view detailed research results, contact us to inquire about membership.

Creating and Administering an HR/Payroll Web Portal


The benefits of employee self-service have been enjoyed by companies for a number of years now, with a resulting reduction in costs and improvements in employee satisfaction levels for many companies.  However, a significant number of companies still do not have a well-designed web portal for HR/Payroll, and others have a portal, but it is not well-utilized by the employee population.  A variety of factors can contribute to this lack of employee utilization, including an overly complex design, limited functionality, a lack of updated content, and a poor rollout of the technology.  Another major contributing factor is easy to access to alternative contact methodologies, such as an employee call center or the availability of onsite HR representatives.

Company Experience

On a recent Peeriosity PeercastTM, a large healthcare company with over $10 billion in revenue and more than 50,000 employees, shared their experiences in implementing and administering employee self-service technology called ServiceMatters.  This solution has three parts to it: the ServiceMatters Portal, Knowledge Management, and HR Case Management.  The ServiceMatters Portal allows employees to request assistance with such issues as Benefits, Leaves of Absence, MyJourney, MyCareer, and more.  The Knowledge Base provides employees with answers to common HR questions and processes, and the HR Case Management includes tasks, checklists, and historical information to efficiently manage employee interactions.  The effort is an HR and IT collaboration to create efficient service delivery and includes an integrated satisfaction survey to provide feedback on the effectiveness of the current solution.

A key part of the governance process is supported by usage reporting for the HR portal.  Some of the metrics focused on include the number of portal views by major area, the top five most viewed topics in the knowledge management section, and the method employees use to contact Human Resources (for example, by phone, portal, or e-mail). 

Peeriosity members have access to additional details related to this presentation, including the PeercastTM recording, original presentation slides, and detailed poll results.

iPollingTM Results Review

Looking at the results of a poll related to this PeercastTM created using the iPollingTM technology, the first question addressed the level of usage by employees of the employee self-service portal on a regular basis.  The results are interesting, with 40% of the companies experiencing utilization rates of at least 70%, with 27% of those being 90% or higher.  Another 20% have a utilization rate of at least 50%, while the rest of the companies are experiencing usage below those levels.

iPolling: Creating an HR/Payroll Web Portal

The second poll question then looked at the specific strategy that was most effective in getting employees to adopt the HR self-service portal.  Making use of the portal mandatory for some items was clearly the most popular response, with 47% of the companies selecting this option.  Having an ongoing campaign to make the portal, and what can be done through the portal, visible to employees received 13% of the responses, while another 13% indicated that their efforts to get employees to use the portal had not been particularly successful.

Some of the member comments related to this poll include the following:

Wholesale & Distribution Member – We require employees to do time entry, PTO time off, and other requests in the self-serve portal so our adoption is highest.

Other Industry Member – Self Service is a normal part of payroll now!

Manufacturing Member – This topic is near & dear to my heart and is on my list of goals for 2019. About 50% of our employee population works at plants and do not have easy access to our company’s portal.

Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals, Biotech Member – There are certain things that employees can self-serve and those are primarily around payroll topics. We’ve introduced an employee portal on our CM/KB platform where adoption of the employee portal has been less than optimal.

Manufacturing Member – The portal works great when you’re within the network, the challenge comes in having it function with the various browsers that individuals utilize outside of the network on their personal computers or mobile devices.

Non-Profit Member – We reinforce the use of the employee self-service portal in multiple ways including additional HR training sessions and reminders. Our employees use self-service for everything including time tracking, PTO requests, and tax withholding changes. The ability for employees to make direct deposit changes is temporarily turned off right now which is driving our percentage down a bit. The Employee Service Center will also walk an employee through the change in the portal so they do it themselves and hopefully they will utilize the portal going forward.

Agriculture & Mining Member – In the process of rolling out a self-service portal currently.

Manufacturing Member – Benefits are only accessible on the portal

Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals, Biotech Member – We have multiple portals, and some portals have over 85% usage while some others are lower at 50%.

Closing Summary

Providing employees with online access to their HR-related information is a win-win approach that will only increase in popularity in the coming years as companies enhance their technology offerings and provide more robust functionality and access to richer content.  For some, the greatest challenge is how to allocate often scarce resources to enhance this important part of their HR operation.

What is the status of your company with respect to the implementation and utilization of an employee portal?  Is your current solution meeting your needs or is it time to take another look at this critical technology?

Who are your peers and how are you collaborating with them?


“PeercastsTM” are private, professionally facilitated webcasts that feature leading member company experiences on specific topics as a catalyst for broader discussion.  Access is available exclusively to Peeriosity member company employees, with consultants or vendors prohibited from attending or accessing discussion content.  Members can see who is registered to attend in advance, with discussion recordings, supporting polls, and presentation materials online and available whenever convenient for the member.  Using Peeriosity’s integrated email system, Peer MailTM, attendees can easily communicate at any time with other attending peers by selecting them from the list of registered attendees. 

“iPollingTM” is available exclusively to Peeriosity member company employees, with consultants or vendors prohibited from participating or accessing content. Members have full visibility of all respondents and their comments. Using Peeriosity’s integrated email system, Peer MailTM, members can easily communicate at any time with others who participated in iPollingTM.

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