Otago primary principals say the Ministry of Education's
attempt to provide transparent progress reports on the Novopay
system are "too little, too late".
Yesterday, the ministry released data to ensure school
payroll administrators, principals and boards would have easy
access to transparent progress reports from the Novopay
Group manager Rebecca Elvy said there had been a significant
improvement in the past week, a backlog of issues from
earlier pay cycles having been cleared.
Updates would be loaded on to www.novopay.govt.nz each day.
Principals and payroll administrators would be able to track
how the call centre was performing, processing volumes,
progress dealing with issues and figures relating to what
happened in each pay cycle, she said.
"We've gone from a priority backlog of almost 8000 a month
ago to just over 600.
"I expect that remaining number to be cleared within the next
couple of days.
"When that backlog is cleared, the processing centre will
begin work on salary assessments and overpayments."
The Otago Primary Principals' Association was not impressed,
president Brent Caldwell said.
"Novopay's transparency on the backlog of issues is too
little, too late, and amounts to little more than a public
relations exercise in damage control.
"The graph shows issues highlighted in pay periods 12 and 13
only, with no mention of new issues in pay periods 14, 15 and
Schools were focused on whether their teachers and support
staff would be paid correctly, Mr Caldwell said.
"Spare a thought for those staff who have been overpaid or
who are waiting salary assessments.
"They will be dismayed to see that their issues are not to be
addressed until the backlog is addressed."
It was vital Novopay ensured all staff details were correct
before end-of-year and start-of-year staffing returns were
due, in order to avoid another crisis, Mr Caldwell said.
Ms Elvy said Talent2, the company behind the payroll system,
had provided additional resources which were demanded by the
ministry, and understood performance improvements must be
Associate Education Minister Craig Foss has told the
Education Ministry and Talent2 to lift their game and resolve
outstanding errors with Novopay.
Mr Foss said yesterday he had spoken to Secretary of
Education Lesley Longstone andTalent2 chairman Andrew Banks
about the errors.
"They are in no doubt about my expectations, and
disappointment, and some of the issues that we've had to
face, and how that's impacted on many New Zealanders in the
"I'm fully expecting them to lift their game and I have
commitment that they will."