This is part of a special advertising section featuring case studies offering solutions to HR technology challenges.
Chesapeake Energy Corp., the second largest producer of natural gas and the most active driller of new oil wells in the United States, fosters an atmosphere of energy and innovation. Approximately half of its 12,000 employees work in the field -- on a rig, visiting wells or driving a truck -- in 18 states. The other half work at the company's Oklahoma City headquarters, where the average age is middle 30s, much younger than the industry average.
"Having a workforce that is very tech-savvy enables us to be more innovative, because our employees have grown up with technology. And they are asking for more," says Williams Espino, senior director of HR technology.
Mobile Management -- Anytime, Anywhere
To more easily connect its rapidly growing workforce to the company's automated workforce-management system, Chesapeake is deploying the award-winning Kronos Workforce Mobile? solution to about half of its workforce. Employees in the field can punch in and out on their company-issued mobile devices, view their timecards and schedules, check their accrual balances and request time off. Using mobile phones or tablets, managers can see employee schedules and quickly respond to workforce-management issues, including approving employee timecards and time-off requests.
"We're really excited that field employees will be able to enter information on the fly, wherever they are," says Espino, "and managers will be able to respond right away."
With the mobile devices, an employee's email request for time off is less likely to get buried in a manager's inbox or be overlooked because managers are away from their computers. Managers have the functionality at their fingertips to review and approve requests as they occur.
Timely, Accurate Labor Tracking
Another benefit, says Espino, is field employees using their mobile devices to easily allocate their time to specific locations, jobs and departments throughout the workday. Chesapeake shares the maintenance of a number of wells with multiple owners, making accurate tracking of employee time at each well critical for accurate billing.
"This functionality alone is a game-changer for us," says Espino, noting the company has more than 330,000 property codes.
Using the mobile devices, field employees can enter data as they begin and finish work at each location. In addition to more accurate time tracking, the mobile functionality allows Chesapeake to accelerate the billing process for maintaining wells.
GPS Expands Visibility
Chesapeake plans to implement the mobile solution's GPS functionality to automatically capture the locations where employees are punching in and out. By validating where a field employee is entering labor-level information, the company can ensure the right property is billed when an employee enters information into a mobile device. Down the road, the company envisions also having its trucking division employees use the mobile devices' GPS functionality.
Espino sees mobile technology use growing further, at the company and elsewhere. Within a few months, Chesapeake doubled the number of mobile tablets it deployed with managers.
"Usually, IT is driving technology, but we're finding that our employees are driving this," he says. "Our employees are asking for functionality because they can see the apps that others are offering, so they expect this level of functionality with day-to-day processes and with our systems."
Now, Chesapeake employees can enjoy workforce-mobile functionality every day, in the office or in the field.
Kronos Workforce MobileTM was named a Top HR Product by Human Resource Executive® at the magazine's 2011 HR Technology® Conference in October. To learn more about Workforce Mobile, visit
Company: Chesapeake Energy Corp.
Headquarters: Oklahoma City
Primary Business: Natural gas and oil production.
HR Technology Challenge: The company needed rapid response to workforce-management issues and fast, accurate tracking of employee time by location.