Vegware, the eco-friendly packaging specialists is working to reform its people procedures using an online HR solution from Cezanne HR.

The Edinburgh-based company develops and produces an award-winning collection of catering disposables and food packaging items. All of the products are made from recycled or renewable materials.

Vegware has expanded rapidly in the last 5 years, growing from a team of 2 in 2009 to 50 in 2015 and within this time the HR needs have changed significantly. In particular the software managing annual leave became unfit for purpose, leading HR co-ordinator Emma Young to search for a replacement.

The search led to unimpressive results in cost and functionality on the current market, requiring Emma to expand her responsibility to systems that would be able to manage a range of HR processes. A demo of Cezanne HR’s cloud-based system convinced her it would be a perfect fit.

Emma Young says:

“The core HR and absence modules do everything I need for now – and there is scope in the future to take up other modules as the company grows, rather than paying for things we are not immediately using … I was also able to get a full HR system for the same price as other products that only covered annual leave.”

A system that would link seamlessly with Google calendars used across the business was crucial to Vegware. Software developers at Cezanne HR were able to build in other additional functionality, available to all users, so that annual leave booked through the HR system is updated automatically on Vegware’s Google calendar.

Emma adds:

“We have a field based sales team so it’s vital to keep track of who is off when, and have this information feed into other systems that we use”

Some initial training with Cezanne HR was carried out before the system was launched with a small test group. The system has now been implemented across the whole business after staff said they found it intuitive and easy to use. Manager reactions have been positive as they now have oversight of absence in their teams as well as the system cutting down on time-consuming admin.

“It is helping us keep all the data in one central place and the ability for team members to self-manage makes it easier to ensure the information we have is up-to-date,” Emma says.

Improved management information is one of the benefits Vegware is beginning to see, with the running of regular reports on headcount as one example. It can also detect any emerging trends in sickness absence. Looking further ahead, Emma believes the company will find the training and development and performance management modules useful.

She says:

“It’s definitely a system for the long term as there’s so much you can do with it.  The support team have also been absolute stars and have been really thorough and quick to respond.  I can’t recommend it highly enough and in fact I’ve already recommended it to an ex-colleague who is looking for a new HR system.”