The Client

The Client

Mackay Sugar, esteemed as Australia's second-largest sugar milling enterprise, boasts an impressive annual turnover surpassing $300 million. The company operates three prolific mills located in Racecourse, Marian, and Farleigh. Its diverse revenue streams are composed of raw and refined sugar, molasses, and renewable energy. Primarily, Mackay Sugar excels in the production of raw sugar, with an average output of 800,000 tonnes each year, catering to both domestic consumers and international markets. Additionally, the company maintains a significant stake in the sugar refining sector, holding a 25% share in a joint venture with Wilmar that spans across Australia and New Zealand.

The Business Problem

The Business Problem and Outcomes

Project Initiation and HCM Implementation:
Mackay Sugar faced a challenging commencement of its Human Capital Management (HCM) system implementation. However, with strategic recovery efforts, the project was successfully realigned. The deployment of HCM modules was executed smoothly, effectively accommodating the seasonal nature of the business, which frequently necessitates the re-hiring of a substantial workforce. Smart WFM facilitated these processes by consistently optimising the Performance Management process and providing advisory services for ongoing improvements.

Issue: Manual Timekeeping and Award Interpretation
The manual entry of time records and interpretation of awards was a significant administrative burden.
Solution: Smart WFM addressed this by configuring rules within the HCM system to automate calculations, including rounding and overtime, based on Mackay Sugar's specific awards. Moreover, geofencing and geotagging capabilities were integrated, ensuring precise punch tracking through the mobile app, and enhancing compliance and reporting accuracy.

Issue: Leave Management
The existing manual leave process was cumbersome, involving paper forms and requiring manager approvals.
Solution: The introduction of an automated time-off request feature within the web and mobile platforms, along with the implementation of workflow automation, now routes requests directly to the appropriate managers. This change has effectively eliminated paper forms, reduced approval delays, and improved visibility of employee leave schedules, while automatically updating the accrual leave balance.

Issue: Work Order Tracking
The lack of an integrated system for tracking work orders against time entries posed difficulties in labour allocation and cost control.
Solution: A new field was added to the timesheet interface, allowing employees to tag time entries with corresponding work orders during clock-in. Managers were also provided the flexibility to manually adjust these tags, offering a refined approach to tracking labour hours against specific work orders.

Issue: Payroll Process Complexity
The payroll process was hindered by a system not fully aligned with Mackay Sugar's payroll specifications.
Solution: Smart WFM configured a payroll export format tailored to interface seamlessly with Mackay Sugar's payroll system, ensuring accurate and efficient payroll operations.

Through these solutions, Smart WFM has not only resolved existing issues but has also positioned Mackay Sugar at the forefront of digital workforce transformation, fostering a more efficient, compliant, and transparent working environment.

The Technical Solution

The Project

Smart WFM has adeptly delivered comprehensive end-to-end Human Capital Management (HCM) and Workforce Management (WFM) implementation services for Mackay Sugar. Our extensive range of services encompasses solution design, intricate award interpretation, advanced scheduling, and recruitment, alongside core HR and Performance Management integration via Dell Boomi.

Our engagement with Mackay Sugar extended to meticulous implementation within the Time and Labor Management (TLM) and accruals module, encompassing award interpretation, enhancement of the leave request process, and the application of geofencing/geo-tagging functionalities for mobile app users.

Workforce Composition:
- Active Employees: 605
- Seasonal Employees: 1,000 during peak periods

Technology Deployment:
- UKG Workforce Ready for seamless HCM and WFM operations
- SAP for robust payroll integration

Industrial Relations Framework:
The project catered to a variety of employment arrangements, including:
- Shift work for trades and non-trades personnel
- Day work for trades and non-trades personnel
- Traffic officer arrangements

Project Milestone:
The go-live was successfully executed in approximately May of 2022.

Ongoing Engagement and Additional Services:
To ensure sustained optimisation of Mackay Sugar's HCM and WFM processes, Smart WFM continues to provide Support and  Managed Services (SMS), leveraging UKG technology to enhance operational efficiency.

Quote from client:

For the past 20 months, our interaction with SmartWFM has been integral to the successful implementation of UKG Ready. Initially involved in the implementation stage, the HCM team seamlessly transitioned into providing support for our ongoing development with UKG. Their dedicated understanding of our processes, and their effective utilisation of all possible resources to their disposal before proposing solutions, has significantly contributed to the success of the system at Mackay Sugar. Charl Grobbelaar Human Resources Advisor


Agriculture Digital Workforce Transformation Project

2 min read

Agriculture Digital Workforce Transformation Project

The Client As Australia's largest cooperative in the grain industry. The organisation is intricately woven into the entire grain value chain,...

Read More
Retail Operational Excellence through Integration

3 min read

Retail Operational Excellence through Integration

The Client A leading Australian retailer operating a diverse portfolio of supermarkets, liquor stores, and other retail outlets, committed to...

Read More
Global Vendor Augmentation Services

1 min read

Global Vendor Augmentation Services

The Client As the world's leading global supplier of WFM technology our client has been established for over 40 years. Evolving considerably over...

Read More