Rob Ackley is the Vice President of Human Resources with Ruffalo Noel Levitz, the leading provider of technology-enabled solutions and services for enrollment, student success and fundraising in the higher education and nonprofit communities. Their services are in high demand and their success has resulted in significant market growth, compounded by recent mergers and acquisitions. Now serving clients in the US, Asia-Pacific, Canada and the UK, the need for easy access to reliable and detailed human resource information about federal, state, regional and local regulations, as well as answers to sometimes thorny HR questions, has become a must-have.
Ackley reports directly to the CEO and is a member of the senior leadership team, overseeing all human-capital-related decisions, including compliance. Those issues had become increasingly varied and complex as the organization grew through merger and acquisition—six acquisitions in the past two and a half years. In 2015, the company had grown to more than 800 full-time employees and about 5,000 part-time employees.
Ackley was about to add a full-time researcher position just to stay on top of the changing employment law requirements affecting the organization's operations in 30 states and four countries.
"One of the things we have struggled with as we have moved into all of these different states and countries is compliance—and doing compliance in a cost-effective manner," says Ackley. After reviewing a demo with one of his direct reports, the Director of Compliance, both were immediately sold on the potential of XpertHR and the company became a subscriber. Almost immediately, he says, he realized that the capabilities provided through XpertHR meant he would no longer need to bring in a full-time researcher.
They saw many potential benefits but one in particular stood out: "Really, for the first time, we found a company that was showing us minimum wages by county and by city. Nobody else we had worked with could show us that or was willing to have that data updated on a regular basis."
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Each year, higher education and nonprofit executives turn to Ruffalo Noel Levitz to accomplish their goals for student recruitment, marketing, financial aid, student success and donor engagement. More than a consulting agency, Ruffalo Noel Levitz is distinguished by its powerful array of technology-enabled enrollment and fundraising tools used by more than 3,000 campuses and nonprofit organizations across North America and beyond. In addition, Ruffalo Noel Levitz conferences, research reports, papers and articles help clients stay on top of current trends.
Imagine trying to stay abreast of changing laws, rules and regulations in 30 states and four countries. A daunting task. XpertHR minimizes the effort and reduces insecurity for Ruffalo Noel Levitz, says Ackley. Instead of hiring a researcher charged with staying up to date on changing wage and hour requirements, now Ackley and his staff are able to quickly turn to XpertHR for reliable answers vetted by attorneys from top employment law firms—and edited by an in-house team of legal editors and HR professionals.
Ackley quickly realized that XpertHR would replace the need for a new hire. "We figured out in a matter of literally a few minutes on the site that that would be completely redundant," he says. "That person would have had to go and do other things because the site is simple enough, and yet robust enough that you can get the information out quickly. There's really no need to park somebody on it—it's a much more efficient process."
Whenever two organizations come together, there are a myriad of policies, procedures, practices, rules and regulations that must be reviewed and aligned. The consolidation and updating of policy handbooks becomes a critical task—one that typically requires a lot of back and forth, review and revision between HR and legal counsel.
"If we need to update a policy handbook, we're going to need counsel and will incur hourly rates to have them draft and then ultimately approve what may even be very minor changes," says Ackley. XpertHR minimizes these costs, he says. "The employee policy revisions, procedure verification and compliance process would have been extremely difficult and time consuming if we didn't have the policy examples provided by XpertHR to guide the conversation," he says.
Easy access, ease of use, information not readily available through other sources and the peace of mind that comes from knowing that the answers found can be relied upon—these are the key benefits that Ackley has already found through XpertHR. "It has been a very efficient hub of knowledge that we can access in a multitude of ways," he says.
For Ruffalo Noel Levitz, XpertHR provides:
Ackley is already seeing a return on investment:
Choose XpertHR as your strategic partner for all of your HR needs—at the local, state and national level. "It's a small price to pay for peace of mind", says Ackley.
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