CORT Case Study | SaaS, Time and Labor

CORT Business Services
Unifies HCM, Elevates Business with Cloud-Delivered UltiPro

Key Benefits

  • Redirected time and resources to key business projects
  • Reduced payroll full time equivalents by 50%
  • Simplified benefits enrollment,making it easy for employees and increasing efficiency for HR

Number of Employees

  • 2,300

Company Profile

For more than 40 years, CORT has been a leading provider of rental furniture with a global network of affiliates in more than 70 countries. CORT, a Berkshire Hathaway company, serves more than 80% of the Fortune 500 companies with the most comprehensive range of destination services in the U.S.

The Challenges

Previously, CORT took a multi-application approach to its HR management by using an enterprise resource planning (ERP) vendor for HR, a payroll service bureau for outsourced payroll service, and a manual, in-house process for time and attendance. The assorted systems were both inefficient and expensive.

The Solutions

Now with Ultimate’s cloud technology, CORT has one end-to-end solution to handle its HCM processes, including payroll, benefits administration, online benefits enrollment, and time management. This comprehensive scope of functionality is resulting in even greater gains than expected. Since going live on the UltiPro solution in July 2006, CORT’s IT team is now focusing its time and resources to key business projects. With its unique cloud platform for HCM, Ultimate Software handles the full responsibility for hardware, software, system maintenance, and upgrades.

“To accommodate our industry’s specific needs, we developed some of our own software for activities critical to running our business, like inventory management,” said Debbie Lansford, chief financial officer at CORT Business Services. “When we were considering potential HR solution providers, we wanted to ensure that our IT team would not have to support our new HCM solution and could focus on our core business applications.”

“By selecting Ultimate Software’s cloud technology, we did not have to make a large capital investment in a software license. It really makes good business sense to let Ultimate handle the upgrades, system maintenance, and the hardware while we fully concentrate on our business.”

Another decision-driver for CORT in selecting UltiPro was the solution’s range of tools for time management. Previously, employee hours were collected manually by managers and forwarded to their supervisors. After obtaining necessary approvals, the hours and rates were entered on spreadsheets and funneled to a half-dozen offices, where they were compiled for payroll. Because information was passed from person to person, the process was time-consuming, confusing, and error-prone.

“One of the most important benefits of UltiPro is how it has made processes easier on our field managers, who spend much less effort managing employee time records,” said Eileen Buckley, payroll manager at CORT Business Services. “With UltiPro, they can log in and see their team’s year-at-a-glance attendance, or a manager can drill down to study a specific individual’s data. Since sick and vacation time are submitted online, managers give instant approvals and can conveniently cross-reference requests against paid-time-off balances.”

“Previously, we used to have 12 people working on payroll. Using UltiPro for human resource management, payroll processing, and time management, we have cut this number by 50%. Everything is automated and centralized, and better reporting is now available,” added Buckley.

Another detail-intensive challenge is streamlining open enrollment for benefits. Before UltiPro, CORT’s HR team traveled to each location during benefits enrollment, distributed information, answered employee questions, collected the hand-written forms, and brought them back to the main office. Field staff would then fly in to the headquarters in Fairfax, Virginia to help input benefits changes and complete the cumbersome project.

“With UltiPro, benefits enrollment is easy for our employees and efficient for our HR team,” said Buckley. “Employees log in and can update their benefits choices on their own. Because they are responsible for entering their personal selections through self-service, there are fewer opportunities for error. There is no need for anyone to travel anywhere or try to interpret hand-written forms. UltiPro has made our HCM so much better—it’s like day and night in comparison to our previous methods.”