Trustees approve building project for Human Resources’ Shared Services Center

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Plans for the creation of a Human Resources Shared Services Center (SSC) took a crucial step forward after the Board of Trustees approved the lease and capital improvements for the SSC’s space within the 331 Building at Innovation Park during the Sept. 16 meeting.

The HR Shared Services Center will occupy the first and second floors of 331 Building, approximately 40,200 square feet, and house approximately 170-200 of the 250 Human Resources’ employees currently dispersed across the University.

The 20-year lease will be capitalized at $12 million with an option to purchase at the tenth and twentieth lease anniversary dates. The renovation work is estimated to cost $6.9 million, and both design and renovation will be completed by the Office of Physical Plant.

It will provide a location (with parking) that is convenient for applicants and employees who need to visit Human Resources for onboarding, interviewing, and other customer-service related needs and will also allow many of the HR employees to be co-located, providing a more integrated HR service delivery model. 

The SSC is a key component of the Human Resources Business Process Transformation (HRBPT), a new HR service delivery model that provides more strategic HR support and increased customer service.  This will be achieved by more efficiently and effectively aligning HR resources and leveraging redesigned policies and business processes with updated tools and technology.

“We know that our future HR service delivery model will provide both strategic and operational support to the University by streamlining processes and providing services based on areas of expertise,” Susan Basso, Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer.  

Begun in 2013 and slated to be operational in July 2017, the HRBPT’s goal is to improve HR service delivery and redefine how HR services and support are provided to the entire University.

The HR Shared Services Center will support the HRBPT by housing HR Shared Services, a division consisting of HR Professional Services, HR Operational Excellence and HR Operations, as well as the Centers of Expertise. 

  • The Professional Services unit will provide benefits, compensation, employee development, talent acquisition and employee and labor relations expertise, primarily as resources to management, and the HR strategic partners and consultants (formerly known as HR Reps).
  • The Operational Excellence area will provide analytics and project management expertise to ensure that HR is most effectively implementing and monitoring the HR services being provided.

The HR Operations area will provide customer service, benefits expertise, data input and onboarding as well as coordination of part-time staff and academic staffing. 

The Centers of Expertise will tasked with designing core strategy, policy, programs and plans, and will be comprised of four HR specialty areas:

  • Labor and Employee Relations – overseeing policy management, academic and staff employee relations and labor relations
  • Talent, Diversity & Inclusion – responsible for talent acquisition; diversity initiatives; workforce planning; and organizational effectiveness employee development, and performance management programs
  • Compensation and Benefits – overseeing executive, faculty, staff and technical service compensation; retirement and health and welfare benefits; and childcare
  • HRIT Strategy – creating information technology strategy design, development and implementation

The HRBPT will also include the implementation of three new computer technologies to support the service advancements. Housed at an online source called WorkLion, the HR Portal will provide employees with access to employee self-service capabilities and important policy and process information; a knowledgebase the supports the portal and the operations of the Shared Services Center; and case management services to document and follow the resolution of employee inquiries.

WorkLion will also be the window to Workday, a new human capital management and payroll system, and the Learning Resource Network (LRN), for professional development. All are scheduled to be online by July 2017.

Human Resources plans to begin the phased transition to the 331 building in late spring and summer of 2017.

For more information on the HR Shared Services Center or any aspect of HRBPT, visit the HRBPT website, or see the first and second in a series of articles on HRBPT in Penn State Today. 

Last Updated September 19, 2016