Customer Success Story: Messiah University

Centralized Hiring with Messiah University

Don Lerew, Assistant Director of Human Resources at Messiah University, has been working with PeopleAdmin for almost 10 years and has seen his team through several implementations of different PeopleAdmin solutions.

“Before PeopleAdmin, we had a very paper-intensive and people-intensive process,” says Don. “We had Word docs and PDFs that often were updated, printed and mailed back. We had other documents that we would scan and send to the hiring managers. And we had other documents that we’d manually upload to our imaging system. It worked, but it was piecemeal—an email for this, a PDF for this, a Word document for this. There was a lot more human time required to complete those tasks. In 2011, we had a conversation about how we needed to move into the 21st century so our staff could refocus on some other things. We thought, we have 40 hours a week from someone, how much of that do we want to be in front of a copier or manually maintaining position descriptions for a department that wanted to make changes? We had better things to do with our time.”

Don and his team realized they needed an HR solution to enable their department to do more with their time. They went through the RFP process with several vendors, and PeopleAdmin stood out. “I was very pro-PeopleAdmin because of the integration with Banner,” Don said. “That partnership was a big deal to me. Ultimately, PeopleAdmin had the higher education piece and the Banner partnership that sealed the deal.” They implemented ATS and Position Management in 2013, and the daily rhythms of the department changed quickly.

“Because it was so night and day going from a manual process, there were time savings everywhere,” Don noted. “We had all of these applications that were just coming in via mail and we had to scan every single one, and a person had to go out and index every single one—it was just so manual before. For position descriptions, hiring managers suddenly had access to edit and approve descriptions. Previously, we had a department sending a Word document with edits to our Word document, and then someone would have to manually make all the updates and then post that description online. At busy times of the year, it would take a lot of time. Now, we have automatic updates and consistency across positions and job applications.”

In 2019, Don and his team started another implementation, this time for Employee Records. “When Employee Records 2.0 came out, and I watched a webinar about it, I realized the enhancements and improvements that PeopleAdmin had made,” Don said. “It’s an interactive process with an employee where they can go in and submit and review items in one portal. That’s what helped us decide to go forward with it. It’s so nice that a new hire can go online and do almost everything in advance of their first work day, rather than coming to HR and signing packets at the desk. When new hires are signing things on the spot in an office, it’s hard to know if they’re even able to read it thoroughly—plus, it’s taking up the time of an HR person who has to sit there while the new hire reviews the paperwork. When users can do it online in advance, they can actually read through and agree to the policy without feeling rushed.”

Earlier this year, Messiah University launched a new feature for their recruiting and hiring process: camp hiring. Today, almost every employee—including the temporary summer camp workers—is hired and onboarded through PeopleAdmin. By next summer, it will be every hire. “Everyone is running through the same system now,” says Don. “When we started using PeopleAdmin back in 2013, I was overseeing student employment and I thought, we need to have them in there too. It wasn’t centralized at all before—it was just an email from a department with who they wanted to hire and at what pay rate. Implementing the student side was a big positive shift, and now we’ve expanded that to summer camp hires.”

Don’s years of experience with PeopleAdmin means he has a few pieces of advice for other customers: use PeopleAdmin for student employment and consider position descriptions. “I encourage folks to consider using this with student employment as well, if it’s housed within HR,” says Don. “It’s really helpful—we used to have to do all the setup for students manually, but now we just show them the posting and if they want it, they can apply. With PeopleAdmin, we can have hires done by the end of July so departments can plan in advance if they’re short, which is especially helpful for the large employers of custodial and dining. Also, I love having Position Management. Consider using that system. I know it adds to the cost, and I’m frugal, but if HR really wants to decentralize position descriptions so that employees can see them and supervisors can as well, it’s a really nice way to do that and have it maintained electronically.”

For more information on how you can centralize and streamline hiring with PeopleAdmin, reach out to our experts!