Overall Satisfaction with Ascentis
Ascentis is currently used across two businesses. We have the full suite with the exception of performance management. It is used across the whole organization. Ascentis solves no problems for the organization but does create a multitude of new problems that we did not have to deal with from our previous payroll/HR/benefits/timekeeping provider. Ascentis contractor LaborMetrix addresses the problem of calculating variable pay for hourly employees.
- Contract with LaborMetrix
- Payroll - Requires more manual steps including processing separately in the timekeeping portal, calculating in the variable pay calculator application, exporting from the variable pay calculator application to a .txt file, uploading that .txt file into Ascentis payroll to add the hourly pay. Paychecks do not include the time off balances by default, which is out of compliance with CA earnings statement laws. Administrators have to export the balances and manually upload them for every payroll. Paychecks can display the 401K contribution percentage, but not the Roth 401K contribution percentage. We have to use a separate payroll application to do the W-2 and quarter-end processes because the main web portal is not able to do that. We have to use the separate payroll application to get reports of any use because the main web portal only has a few reports available and they are not helpful. In order to view an employee's paycheck, the administrator has to go through his or her personal profile and payroll screen. The administrator is unable to edit an employee's tax withholdings on the web portal.
- HR - Almost everything related to configuration and management is only fully-functional on the Remote Desktop that no one mentioned being necessary at all during the sales calls. Administrators cannot do everything from the main web portal. This includes editing employee access and changing the information that is displayed to employees on the main web portal. This includes setting up benefit carriers and employee profile management. Most of the reports available on the web are not useful, and administrators have to use the Remote Desktop to create custom reports.
- Benefits - Unable to view the EDI feed information. Administrator view does not show the sum of all of an employee's benefit costs. Managing the documents and links in the benefits section requires using the Remote Desktop that no one mentioned during sales and requires unnecessarily complex steps involving adding a picture to a specific folder in the remote desktop and then including the file reference to RD/Company/Admin/Folder/file.jpg just to have a picture displayed for employees instead of just uploading the picture like any other website.
- Timekeeping - Requires separate processing in order to lock timesheets and process payroll, requires a workaround involving exporting the following pay period to show the current time off balances when downloading the figures to be included on the paychecks,. The system has meal premium features and shifts features, but they conflict and display incorrect times for approaching hours (example shows meal premium after 6.01 hours instead of after 5 hours). Notifications that were sent to the EE and supervisor were sent at midnight the night after the employee already reached the point of getting a meal premium, which does not help anyone avoid it at all. Holidays paid out the number of work hours on the shift plus the 30 minutes of unpaid lunch, which meant they were overpaid. Holidays paid out for days when the employee was not scheduled to work, which meant they were overpaid. Sick balance policies consider transferring to be like a new hire, which incorrectly adds 3 days of sick time to the employee's balance. It's been a year since implementation and problems that caused Ascentis to postpone our implementation still have not been fully resolved. Features highlighted during the sales meetings do not work and we have had to deactivate them to avoid confusion with our staff and supervisors.
- Mobile App - Paycheck information in the app does not match paycheck information shown on the web portal. It displays hourly-only timesheet features like exception counters and things for salaried employees who do not get meal premiums or OT or clock in and out. It allows employees to add or remove employees from their benefits, which should not be allowed unless the employee had a qualifying life event. It does not allow employees to submit address updates, scheduled for future bug fix but currently displays unpaid hours like unpaid vacation as a dollar amount instead of hours. It's scheduled for a future bug fix but currently shows a total rate that is the sum of an employee's sick rate + vacation rate + regular rate + OT rate + etc... that does not mean anything, but is shown for some reason. It does not allow administrator configuration of what should or shouldn't be visible to employees, does not display all of the pay statements in the employee record when they are all visible on the main web portal, and it has two separate sections in which employees can view their balances and request time off - one from the last paycheck's information and one from NOVATime, which is confusing because they do not always display the same information.
- Recruiting - The system user experience is extremely convoluted. Also, unlike others that just allow clients to add the forms and things required from applicants, Ascentis charges at least $100 for every form that needs a signature, which is most forms in the new-hire process. Ascentis also charges for each signature. Ascentis also charges for each administrator/manager who would use the recruiting module. None of this was stated during the sales meetings or even in the order form/contract.
- Reporting - Reports cannot contain timekeeping data, HR/Benefits data, and payroll data in the same report. They all have to be separate reports. Also, unlike ADP or others that do it for free, Ascentis charges the client at least $500-$1000 for creating custom reports.
- All HR processes have become far more difficult and time-consuming.
- We are charged by Ascentis for basic customer service that was provided for free from other payroll/HR/benefits/timekeeping providers.
- It has been over a year since implementation and we still have dozens of problems pending resolution.
- Ascentis was not ready to go live on the go-live date Ascentis proposed and that required us to return to our previous payroll provider and request an extension after already terminating their services based on Ascentis' go-live date.
Ascentis charges clients for creating custom reports. ADP does not. Ascentis literally charges for every initial and signature and form for their Recruiting module. When you call in for assistance, the answer is very often, "can't do it, it's hard-coded".
Do you think Ascentis (discontinued) delivers good value for the price?
Are you happy with Ascentis (discontinued)'s feature set?
Did Ascentis (discontinued) live up to sales and marketing promises?
Did implementation of Ascentis (discontinued) go as expected?
Would you buy Ascentis (discontinued) again?
If a company requires variable pay calculations, LaborMetrix, not Ascentis, is good. Every other aspect is more difficult and time-consuming from running regular payrolls, to managing the database of employees, to entering new hires or terminations, to new hire enrollment or open enrollment, to viewing employee information.