NIH modernizes employee time and attendance system

More than 17,000 employees at the National Institutes of Health can now access and verify their own time sheets and request time off from their office jobs, thanks to a new World Wide Web-enabled time and attendance system.

NIH's new Integrated Time and Attendance System is a Java-based system that was custom built for the agency during the past year by Fairfax, Va.-based American Management Systems Inc. It enables more than 17,000 employees to use the NIH intranet to access and verify their own time sheets and request time off.

"Using the intranet allows NIH to move to a paperless time and attendance system, saving time and money," said Stephen Benowitz, director of NIH's Office of Human Resource Management.

The system was designed to streamline the time and attendance process by enabling supervisors to respond more quickly to employee requests and reducing paperwork for timekeepers. ITAS is replacing a time-consuming, paper-based labor and resource legacy system that required managers to manually track work hours, sick leave and vacation time.

"ITAS helps NIH staff spend more time on research and business activities and less time on administrative tasks," Benowitz said. "The system is easy to use and required virtually no training for most users."

NIH employees using ITAS are located in different offices across the country, and some are part of the federal government's telecommuting initiative to reduce traffic congestion and pollution.

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