Academic Timesheet Project – August Update
Update on the implementation of the Academic Timesheet system.
Research Finance and The Research Lifecycle Programme (RLP) are working together to improve the academic timesheet submission process – these are timesheets that are required by research funders. The outcome will be to move away from the current spreadsheet and paper submission format.
The new system was procured at the beginning of this year from Vidatum. Since then, a group of early adopters from across the University have been using and testing the system. They have been assessing the timesheet solution, reviewing its features, the guidance information, and providing feedback to enable a successful implementation. The testing phase has been slightly longer than planned as a result of some operational issues, but the testing phase will come to a close at the end of August.
Importantly, the system test has been successful, a few issues have been ironed out, and areas have been identified where additional guidance for users’ needed to be produced.
The onward plan is to roll-out to all timesheet users from September onwards. The indicative roll-out plan is as follows:
- September: Faculty of Humanities
- October: School of Engineering
- November: School of Natural Sciences
- January: Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health
Discussions will shortly commence with colleagues in both academic schools and Research Finance to identity appropriate timings.
For further updates and FAQ’s regarding the timesheet project, please visit the Research Lifecycle Programme Website. Alternatively, for further information, please contact:
Dan Hudson, Timesheet project – Business Change Officer, email@example.com
Anthony Allen, Timesheet project – Business Change Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org.
What will this project deliver?
The new timesheet system will take project details from Oracle Financials and combine it with information from ResourseLink. It will then present project researchers with a single screen showing all of their projects, work packages, and a weekly calendar for them to complete. The system will route the completed timesheet to the relevant authoriser. Reminders will be sent from the system at agreed points to encourage timely completion.
Researchers, and those who authorise timesheets, will be able to complete timesheets on computers or via their mobile devices. This will make the process fast, efficient, and completely paperless.
What is the timeline for the project?
- Vidatum system delivered in January 2023
- Full live testing commenced in March 2023
- Live testing is expected to be completed by the end of August 2023.
- Roll out will commence in mid-September with completion by early 2024
What are the main benefits of the project?
- Increased user satisfaction and ease of use
- Less labour-intensive processes for researchers
- Less manual labour-intensive set up and data entry processes.
- Meet the needs of larger research groups with multiple funding streams
- Meets Funder requirements and is acceptable to EU and UKRI auditors
- Reduced risk of research funding having to be returned because of non-completion of timesheets
Vidatum were founded in 2004 and have extensive experience of working with universities. Their timesheet system was specifically designed in 2018, in collaboration with the Royal College of Surgeons Ireland, to meet the needs of academic researchers. It is now used by more than 20 universities in Ireland, the United Kingdom and Europe.