P.F. Chang's Impacts Overall Business with UltiPro®

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Tuesday, November 1, 2011
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With more than 360 locations and approximately 27,000 employees, P.F. Chang's China Bistro Inc. owns and operates P.F. Chang's China Bistro and Pei Wei Asian Diner. P.F. Chang's China Bistro features a blend of high-quality, Chinese-inspired cuisine and American hospitality in a contemporary bistro setting, while Pei Wei Asian Diner offers a modest menu of freshly prepared pan-Asian cuisine in a more casual environment.

To support both its large, diverse workforce and its overall business, P.F. Chang's needed a unified human capital management solution that would cost-effectively optimize HR administration as well as enable its HR and payroll teams to operate more strategically.

After evaluating Ultimate Software's end-to-end HCM functionality and business-intelligence capabilities, the company decided to switch from a payroll service bureau to UltiPro in February 2009. Today, P.F. Chang's is pleased with the range of business efficiencies as well as Ultimate's high level of customer service.

"I absolutely believe we chose the best HR technology provider, not just for the software, but also for Ultimate Software's people," says Nancy Mailhot, chief people officer for P.F. Chang's China Bistro Inc. "It's clear that Ultimate's employees are committed to the customer. Change can be uncomfortable, especially for a large, complex business like ours, but the talented people we have worked with at Ultimate Software have made a huge difference with our successful transition."

Now that P.F. Chang's is leveraging UltiPro, the HR and payroll teams have a comprehensive view of critical information related to the company's people-oriented processes, including costs. One testament to the success of the deployment was the production of more than 54,000 perfect pay advises.

P.F. Chang's now has a 360-degree view of its workforce data as well as transparency and control of these processes. Additionally, P.F. Chang's has been able to make a range of operational enhancements that have resulted in improvements in costs, efficiencies and informational quality.

"I understand why some companies may shy away from the responsibility of handling their own payroll, but without this capability, a lot of details are invisible to them," says Eric Niman, director of HR administration for P.F. Chang's. "Since we made the switch to UltiPro, we have gained new insight into our information, improved our processes, and taken our operations to a new level of precision and efficiency. UltiPro has been very good for our business."

Because UltiPro is integrated with its point-of-sale system, P.F. Chang's has been able to reduce the time and effort that store managers need to spend on payroll. Using the UltiPro portal, branded by P.F. Chang's as "PeopleXpress," managers can quickly handle new hires, rehires, and transfers over the Web.

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Business results have included streamlined communication, better quality of workforce data, eliminated delays when processing changes and reduced calls to the HR team. The restaurant franchise also is in the process of rolling out UltiPro to its employees and plans to launch more of UltiPro's people-centric functionality later this year.

"The beauty of UltiPro is not just in how we are using it today, but also in the huge potential that it gives us for tomorrow as we continue to roll out more of UltiPro's functionality and reporting capabilities," says Niman. "We now have the technology foundation to build our HR program for long-term results, and UltiPro is our channel to deliver value across the organization to every one of our employees."


Organization: P.F. Chang's China Bistro Inc.

Headquarters: Scottsdale, Ariz.

Primary business: Franchise of upscale and casual dining restaurants.

HR Technology Challenge: Creating process efficiencies for payroll and HR administration, as well as easy-to-use, effective reporting and business intelligence in order to provide strategic insight into the overall business.

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