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Scottish Fire and Rescue Service

Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) is the world’s fourth largest fire and rescue service. They deliver frontline services across Scotland responding to fires and other emergency incidents. They have a total of 8000 staff, including full-time fire fighters and 3,400 Retained Duty Service (RDS) crew and volunteer staff to serve the remote, rural communities of Scotland.

Manual data collection slows productivity and accuracy

The process of managing employee and payroll data for the organisation’s full-time, part-time and volunteer staff was manual and cumbersome. RDS crew members (many of whom have primary employment in other fields), logged their hours at the fire station, on paper, which was then input into a spreadsheet and used to determine pay calculations along with call-out fees, bank holiday payments, etc. This paper-based and manual payroll process was replicated, with some variation, across all 274 stations in Scotland, generating over 3000 spreadsheets that need to be tracked, updated and verified, resulting in a time-consuming and frustrating process for everyone. SFRS desperately needed a digitised solution to streamline and improve the process, making it more efficient and freeing up time spent working on the process and responding to queries about pay.

SFRS was already using Nintex for its community safety enforcement and community engagement processes, and knew the Nintex Platform on Office 365 could provide a solution. They were also keen to ensure any solution aligned with their move towards mobile cloud solutions.

SFRS: Using the Nintex Platform to digitise and automate payroll processes

As a digital transformation specialist and cloud-solutions provider, plus a Nintex Premier Partner, Synergi were a natural choice and had already worked with SFRS on previous Nintex projects.

Synergi developed an easy to adopt and maintain mobile app solution that enables Watch Managers and Officers in Charge to quickly record hours for their crews in attendance and add any remote crews if needed. Advanced workflows on the Nintex Platform then support the entire RDS timesheet process. All data captured is validated against the internal systems, and the details are routed to the RDS crew for approval/amendment. The solution uses the profile and role data with HR info to accurately calculate pay, which means staff can be updated and informed on expected monthly pay, whilst Watch Managers and Officers in Charge can submit incidents to relevant managers for final review.

Finally, the solution provides central administrative and payroll teams with full visibility into the calculations and final outputs for approval, enabling the outputs to integrate with the finance systems.

Improved crew efficiency and experience

Since going live on June 18, the system has saved over 10,000 manual hours annually, freeing station and payroll managers from tedious excel data manipulation.

It eliminates the time and frustration involved in having to correct pay after a payroll run by avoiding the human errors and inaccuracies in payroll calculations. Plus Management also now has much-needed intelligence on RDS payments status and forecast.

Perhaps most importantly, the Nintex solution helps give visibility to the RDS crew as to what pay they can expect each month, significantly improving the employee experience and helping with recruitment of future staff. Overall the new solution has greatly improved the timesheet and payroll process for everyone involved, meaning they can now spend more time on their core mission.

The Nintex based solution fits with our modern desktop strategic plan by enabling quick adoption of mobile cloud-based technologies.

Stuart Chalmers, ICT Business Services Manager, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service

Our firefighters are overwhelmingly positive about the solution because it is very intuitive, saves them precious time and allows them to be paid correctly and on time.

Stuart Chalmers, ICT Business Services Manager, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service


Saving 10,000 hours p.a.

No more hours of manual work on tedious excel data manipulation.

Limited payroll errors

Improved accuracy and integration with HR info on payroll data..

Improved employee experience

Providing visibility on expected pay.

"Ask me about this project."

Rod Fraser, Microsoft Solutions Consultant, Scotland

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