Provo Municipal Council passes 2019 budget

Provo City Center is pictured Wednesday, March 21, 2018. Isaac Hale, Daily Herald

John Borget, director of Provo’s Administrative Services, asked department heads at the March 10 Municipal Council work session what they would do if they had to cut 5% of their budget.

“Given concerns about an upcoming economic downturn, if you were asked to recommend reductions to your department budget of 5%, how would you go about deciding what your recommendation would be? What process would you follow in your department to reach a recommendation?” Borget asked.

Borget said he didn’t recommend across-the-board cuts but for department heads to look at how they support Provo’s General Plan.

Borget also addressed his concerns of cyber security. Damon Hefner, information security analyst, and Borget have individually met with all directors to discuss security issues in their department.

Borget and Hefner are working on establishing cyber security policies and preparing a security training video to be part of the Employee Essential Training that is required to be completed by new hires and every three years thereafter.

They also are working to identify vulnerable assets throughout the city.

Daniel Softly, human resources director, said his goal for employees is to have them fairly compensated in a safe work environment and to be working with updated equipment.

Keeping up with payroll compensation as compared to other cities and with fair and equal salary ranges is an ongoing task.

“We do a yearly study as part of the budget,” Softly said.

The council is looking at compensation and 401(k) plans as legislative changes for first responders has given the city choices for how to increase retirement plans to benefit police and firefighters. Those decisions will be made in the next month.

Softly’s biggest request comes in the form of a need to upgrade the human resources computer system.

The current system is the same one they were using in 1996.

“Payroll programming is on PeopleSoft,” he said. “We have to go out for a myriad of programs to help with what we do. It’s a home-grown system. Keeping up is challenging with systems that are all disconnected from each other.”

He noted that some are so old they are not even supported by companies any more.

Softly said there is a redundancy of data throughout the city, and it takes many systems to put them under one roof.

The process to find a new integrated human resources system was started in 2019. They received 10 bids. That was eventually narrowed to three, according to Softly.

Softly has had in-house demonstrations on all three systems and has looked at the efficiency, level of services and the number of systems the data department would need.

“Workday is our No. 1 choice,” Softly said. “Utah County uses Workday as well as Intermountain Healthcare and Vivint.”

The cost for the human resource system would be $2.18 million.

“Upgrading what the city was on was higher (in price) than getting a new system,” Softly said.

Borget and Softly left the information with the council to discuss. The costs would be spread over five years and come from the general fund, energy department and public works, with a total cost each year at $470,271.

Daily Herald reporter Genelle Pugmire can be contacted at, (801) 344-2910, Twitter @gpugmire

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