Health System Urgently Needs Punch System During Pandemic

01 September 2020
Time-Tracking Payroll Workflow Dashboards Product-Design Ruby-on-Rails
Screenshot of Project: Health System Urgently Needs Punch System During Pandemic


With the COVID-19 pandemic ensuing, UNM Hospitals, like many organizations at the time, had to quickly shift as many employees to remote work as possible. For this to work effectively, there were many organizational and technological challenges that had to be overcome quickly.

One of them was that the hospital used a punch-in system (Kronos) to track the hours of employees, but it had no way of doing this remotely. Or so they thought. Actually, the web team had a system that did just that. But it’s functionality was a bit crude and wasn’t very user-friendly since it was only used by their 8 or 9 developers when they worked from home on an occasional basis. A more robust solution was needed.

Further, employees often made errors in calculating their time since Kronos rounded time in a way that seemed counter-intuitive. Other efforts had been made to perform these calculations automatically, but they proved to be error-prone.


The web team’s system was used as a building block to create a new robust and user-friendly system. Within a month the system was rewritten piece-by-piece (while leveraging the organizational knowledge that was built into the original system).

Through collaboration with managers, workflows and reports were built in that eased the load of having to report time for both managers and their employees. Based on a little research on how payroll time is estimated a custom library for performing time calculations was designed that enabled the system to provide estimates in their time reports that provided useful feedback which reduced data entry errors substantially.