A Solid Relationship
For over 8 years Claremont has been working closely with the National Trust to provide managed services across their Oracle estate, including Oracle HCM & Payroll and the National Trust Membership System.
Over the years, a close working relationship has developed resulting in many successful engagements with the corner stones of this relationship being delivery excellence, an open and honest communication and great customer service.
This relationship coupled with Claremont’s deep Oracle knowledge has enabled Claremont to help the National Trust respond to the unprecedented changes that have taken place since March 2020.
On Tuesday 17th March Hilary McGrady, The National Trust Director General, announced that the National Trust’s pay-for-entry sites, including houses, cafes and shops, would close by Friday March 20th. This was quickly followed by a decision to close all gated parks, gardens and houses on Sunday 22nd March. Effectively a full closure of the entire National Trust estate.
The National Trust employs over 15,000 people, with many thousands based at over 500 historic houses, castles, parks and gardens spread across the entire UK. Their mission is to protect these beautiful locations for everyone, for ever.
Putting Furlough Into Practice
At the same time, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, announced the Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. This would allow employers to furlough employees and apply for a grant that would cover 80% of their usual monthly wage up to £2,500 a month. The National Trust naturally wanted to take advantage of this government initiative to support their staff and protect their organisation.
During early planning meetings, the National Trust’s payroll team and Claremont developed the overarching principles for a solution to enable the National Trust to provide a flexible Furlough Scheme.
- Minimal data entry overhead
- Professional multi-mode communications
- A flexible solution to work with a variety of Oracle Payroll configurations and requirements
- Minimal Payroll intervention
- Rapid development & deployment
- One stop shop for the full lifecycle of furlough
- Modular design
The first detailed guidance about the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme was provided by HM Revenue & Customs on the 26th March.
The National Trust have a very flexible employee population working across a wide range of contract types. Claremont worked closely with the National Trust’s Payroll Team helping to interpret the legislation and provide guidance regarding the practicalities of administering the scheme. This in turn fed into the Executive Leadership Team’s decision-making process.
Keeping Employees Up To Date
Alongside the payroll calculation, the National Trust also had a range of other requirements. They needed to communicate with employees who were furloughed, which involved ensuring that the charity was able to contact employees through a non-National Trust email address captured using Oracle’s Self Service software.
By April 7th (six working days since details of the scheme were provided), the National Trust produced and distributed their first furlough letters to employees who sadly could no longer work. The first payroll runs of the month began on the 16th April and by the 25th April the National Trust had successfully processed over 14,000 employees through their payrolls.
The longstanding relationship between the National Trust and Claremont, plus Claremont’s close working bond with the National Trust’s Payroll Team, enabled easy collaboration, trust and open communication. Working in partnership with the National Trust, Claremont successfully and quickly delivered an automated, easy to use, flexible solution.
The National Trust was so happy with Claremont’s delivery, they gave us a score of 10.5 / 10 in the monthly customer satisfaction survey.
"Claremont have been absolutely brilliant over the last fortnight – Martin and Adrian in particular have worked wonders and delivered us some really good functionality in no time at all. A fortnight ago, I don’t think any of us would have thought it possible to deliver what we’ve done for the payroll this week. Massive thanks from me."
National Trust HR MI and Systems Manager