Newsletter December 2014

On behalf of the team at Strategic Software, we would like to wish you and your families a Merry Christmas and our very best wishes for the year ahead.

Holiday Opening Hours:

Close December 23rd at 5.00pm

Reopen: 6th January2015 at 8.30am.

Staff are available to answer our software support phone 03 2112595 on all but statutory days. For any other assistance please contact Debbie on: 027 2112596


Christmas/New Year’s Statutory Days

Christmas Day – 25 December 2014, Boxing Day – 26 December 2014

New Year’s Day – 1 January 2015, Day after New Year’s Day- 2 January 2015

Employees are entitled to a paid day off on a public holiday if it would otherwise be a working day.  These public holidays are separate from and additional to annual holidays.  An employee cannot be entitled to more than four public holidays over this period, regardless of their work pattern.

Working on a Public Holiday

If an employee works on a public holiday they are entitled to at least time and a half pay for the time they actually work on the public holiday.  You must also provide a whole day’s alternative leave at a later date, if the public holiday

is a day they would usually work.  Call us with any queries.

Christmas Payroll Processing

As we close from 5pm on 23 December and return 6 January, we would greatly appreciate it if you could advise the hours for wages as early as possible in the week commencing 15 December.  This will enable us to set up the wages due during the fortnight.  We will contact all payroll clients over the next week.

Any wages that are due on the statutory days will be set up to go out on the night of the 24 December for wages due 25 – 28 December and on 31 December for wages due 1 – 4 January. These can be paid earlier if you wish.

Excessive Annual Leave Balances

With staff planning their leave over Christmas/New year, it is a good time for employers to review leave balances. Staff with excessive leave outstanding should be encouraged where possible, to take leave.  Any discussions around annual leave should in the first instance be based on ‘good faith’.   Discuss with the employee their plans; they may be planning a holiday that will use up the outstanding leave.  Where a mutual agreement for taking of outstanding leave cannot be reached the Holidays Act does have provision for the employer to request the employee to take leave.   If you are in this position we recommend that you call us or your employment advisor to discuss your options.  Employees do have the option to cash up one week of annual leave per year, if they have outstanding leave available, and at their employer’s discretion.


ABM 8 

ABM 8 has now been released.

We will be testing ABM 8 with all client customisations and specialised reports, before rolling it out to clients. Some customisations may require updating to run with ABM 8 and we will discuss this with you as part of our testing process. ABM 8 has a fresh new look – all the traditional tool bar menus have been replaced with ribbon type menus.

In addition to this all existing ABM reports have been rewritten and have a new look to them, and there are new reports in all modules. Work has also been done on trying to speed up some reports.  Some screens also have new layouts e.g. the products location grid is now moved to the product details screen. The intention is to try to provide key information with less mouse clicks.

Reports –

Users can now set up the reports they frequently use in a Favourites list and run the reports from this list rather than selecting the reports from all reports each month. Users can have a favourites list in each module.

Jobs –

When a job is closed you are asked if you wish to write off the work in progress immediately.

New job type – Stopped job allows for the job to not have any new costs added to the job but can be invoiced.

We are excited about the new look ABM 8 and will be demonstrating it to you when we have our ABM User group meeting early next year.

Special Christmas offer:  A special 25% discount is available on additional ABM user licenses if order and payment is received before Christmas. Also a 50% discount is available on Document Management and Intercompany Transactions modules if order and payment is received before Christmas.


Tips on increasing productivity

  1. Reduce distractions – Turn off email notifications and only check emails when you have time to action them.
  2. Only touch something once and don’t try multi-task – Following on from the item above, if you stop a task half way through and then try to pick it up again, it takes time to find out where you left off. Try and only pick up and start a task if you believe you can complete it.
  3. Have stand up meetings – when meetings are held standing, it keeps people focused on the purpose of the meeting and stops wandering discussions that are unrelated to the topic.
  4. Delegate work – Identify which tasks can be passed on to others. If you explain any time frames, then others will likely take it very seriously. Make sure you also give them the resources they need to complete the task.
  5. Create a to-do list for the following day – At the end of each day create a list of the tasks for tomorrow. This should mean the tasks needed are fresh in your mind and you are not having to think about it.
  6. Do the hardest task first thing in the morning – Once the hardest job is out the way, the rest of the day gets easier.


“I was concerned when changing from a payroll system that I knew so well to a new one. I needn’t have worried, the team at Strategic were able to recommend, install and train me on a new system that gave me improved reporting and helped with budgets. They made it easy and hassle free. I use Strategic Software for ongoing support as what could take me 5 hours takes them 5 minutes and I am confident with the result.”

Debbie Hodges, Office Manager
E. Hayes & Sons Limited

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