5 Lesser Known BambooHR Features You Will Love | BambooHR Blog
I wish I could say that I’m always on the cutting edge of technology. But let’s be frank. I had my iPhone for months before I realized I could make slow motion videos with it. I had Amazon Prime for months before I realized they had a huge catalog of free videos just sitting there. And I went years—years!—without realizing Ctrl+Z was even a thing. So, don’t feel bad if you don’t know every single BambooHR feature.
The truth is, we’re constantly improving our software, and sometimes it’s hard to keep up. With this in mind, here are five lesser known BambooHR features we think you should be using:
1) Email Alerts
There’s a lot of information for you to keep track of yourself, let alone remind your colleagues about. Email alerts can notify coworkers of important details so you can focus on more important things like building the company culture, hiring, and retaining top talent.
It’s simple. You setup automated email reminders and choose who receives them (and when). For example, you can set up emails to remind managers of their employees’ birthdays and work anniversaries. Or you could set up reminders to check in with new employees every two weeks (or however often you decide) to make sure things are going well. Or let’s even say you track assets in BambooHR. When you give a new employee a computer, you could set up a reminder (for yourself or IT or whoever) in three years to look into upgrading their equipment. The list goes on and on.
2) Custom Fields
With custom fields, you can get rid of those superfluous spreadsheets floating around your computer and put them into your HRIS. We’ve seen everything from t-shirt size to favorite flavor of birthday cake. The possibilities are endless. If there’s a field you can imagine, it can be created in BambooHR. Employee nickname? Check. Hogwarts house? Why not. How much money is somebody willing to spend on ginger ale? A little odd, but sure!
There’s also a wide variety of types of fields that you can create: check box, currency, date, employee list, multi-row line paragraph, number, percentage, phone numbers, etc. And you can create custom approvals within custom fields. For example, if you create a custom field to determine if somebody is allowed to drive a company car (e.g. yes or no), employees could request to become a driver and get it approved through custom approvals. You can even translate each custom field to different languages. “Can I drive the company van?” “Nein!”
3) Point-in-Time Report
If only we could hop in our Delorean, plug in the flux capacitor, and travel back in time with Marty McFly. Well, what if we can? (Well, sort of) The Point-in-Time Report lets you view compensation and job information for employees as of any point in time. As long as you have data in the system, and it’s in a historical table, you can look at it from any specific date—even the future!
For example, if you (or anyone) want to know what each employee’s salary was in 2013—say, on December 24th—you can find out in a matter of moments. Or if you want to know what somebody’s title was in February of 2014—voila!—it’s there. And you can make a report of this in seconds. This feature is especially useful for payroll. Or if you want to convince your boss that you have an amazing memory when it comes to this very specific thing.
4) Payroll Change Report
Speaking of time, you can now save a ton of time thanks to our Payroll Change Report. For the payroll gurus out there, you can now (easily) get the payroll data you need out of BambooHR. The Payroll Change Report is now exportable to CSV and Excel formats. This allows you to work with whatever payroll system you want and avoid manual data entry.
The purpose of this report is to track any payroll related changes during your pay period so you can easily track what may need updating within your payroll system. For example, if a time-off request was made for a previous period, it will keep track of that. And so on. One cool thing about this report is that when you export the report, the current changes will be cleared from the list. This prevents you from exporting the same information again during the next payroll go-around. It’s a déjà vu-free feature.
5) iCalendar Feeds
One feature on BambooHR’s dashboard that gets used a lot is the different feeds. There’s the Who’s Out Calendar—which helps keep track of who is out of the office on any given day, but there are also feeds to inform you of co-workers birthdays, workplace anniversaries, and company holidays. What many customers don’t realize is that you can sync these feeds to your regular calendars (e.g. Outlook or Google Calendar).
If you’re like me and aren’t always in BambooHR when you have a question about who is in the office, this feature saves you time. For example, if a coworker asks you if so-and-so is in today, rather than logging into Bamboo, you can just check your calendar in a matter of a couple seconds. Or if you’re talking to somebody and they keep referencing presents their wife gave them this morning—but you’re not sure why she’s giving him presents—you can subtly scan the birthday calendar feed. “Oh, by the way, I meant to tell you happy birthday!” Awkward situation averted!
Customers can check out the following links to get more info on each feature:
And if you’re not a customer, and want to see these features in action, take our HR software for a spin.
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Bryson Kearl is an HR content creator at BambooHR. His role enables him to study HR's impact on organizations, and he is a diehard believer in the vital role HR plays in building company culture to achieve overarching business objectives.