Finance, Payroll and Scheduling work tirelessly to support 1530 staff members

Meet the teams in Finance, Payroll and Scheduling whose work touches every staff person and every facet of operations throughout the hospital.

The term ‘essential worker’ makes us think of doctors, nurses, grocery store clerks and delivery drivers but behind all of this are the people who track the shifts, track the expenses, pay the bills and keep the organization going. There was no option for staff in Finance, Payroll and Scheduling to stay home. These teams reported for duty as usual during the lockdown.

There were challenges for the Payroll team to navigate. They worked tirelessly to ensure that our 1500+ employees were paid properly. As examples, they were involved in setting up direct deposit for the 90 new surge staff and did payroll for the staff at the COVID-19 Assessment Centre.

Payroll also had to help track staff who were off work awaiting a COVID-19 test result or recovering from the virus. Payroll assisted with accessing federal benefits and WSIB, as needed. Some staff had to request a leave of absence and needed a record of employment for CERB (the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit). Working on both the federal and provincial benefit calculations for such a large staff is a huge job. The hectic pace in Finance was no different. Every year the hospital has a fiscal year-end of March 31 followed by an audit. These deadlines had to be met even during a global pandemic.

The Finance team had many late nights at the exact moment the Prime Minister was asking all Canadians to stay at home. An unexpected and large task was to upload all of the documents needed by the auditors to a secure portal as the face-to-face work couldn’t happen.

Our Finance team is responsible for tracking expenses and submitting applicable ones to Ontario Health for reimbursement. This function became even more critical in the pandemic where portions of costs that are over ‘expected daily use’ levels due to COVID protocols could potentially be covered by the province. Enhanced tracking efforts became a focus for the team.

It became critical for Finance to be nimble and be ready to quickly pay vendors who could commit to supplying Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) needed for our frontline healthcare providers. There was a lot of worry at the time about disruption to Canada Post delivery times.

To give you a sense of scale, the Finance department handles 2,200 invoices in an average month. A lot of time spent on forecasts of PPE with the Materials Management team and figuring out how to quickly purchase items as they became available in a suddenly ultra-competitive marketplace.

The team in Finance is linked to every aspect of running Guelph General Hospital. Remember, we are a $160 million dollar business employing 1,530 people.The Finance, Payroll and Scheduling staff people knew how important it was to support their colleagues in delivering direct patient care. They felt responsible for taking care of the frontline so that our healthcare providers could take care of the community.

This story originated on Guelph General Hospital’s Facebook page on December 8th, 2020 as part of its #behindthemask series to share how the Hospital is working hard to protect patients and visitors from #COVID19.