Man working at a computer

The client: Barndoc Healthcare Limited

Established in 1996 Barndoc runs the GP out of hours service for the 680,000 residents within the north London boroughs of Barnet, Enfield and Brent.  Patients that phone Barndoc for out of hours urgent care are dealt with initially by a team of call handlers. They are then clinically assessed by a GP or registered nurse and, depending on their condition, they are given self care advice, referred to another service, such as A & E, or offered an appointment with a doctor or nurse at one of four designated hospital bases. The organisation also manages calls to the NHS Barnet out of hours District Nursing service, runs Cricklewood GP Health Centre and supplies GPs for the North Middlesex Urgent Care Centre under a contract with North Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust. Additionally, Barndoc provides elective referral management services on behalf of NHS Barnet and local GPs from its main call centre based in Cockfosters, North London.

Barndoc has approximately 240 staff, a combination of GPs, nurses and support staff across 6 locations.

The supplier: RotaMaster

IQUS Limited, founded by practising GP, Chris Jones, in 1999 is a well established software house providing workforce management solutions to UK healthcare organisations.  IQUS is a recognised market leader in the provision of enterprise level rota management software – with its flagship product, RotaMaster.

The brief

Barndoc was running a manual, paper timesheet system to record staff attendance which was causing problems in terms of its inadequacy to accurately record proof of presence.  In 2011 when Barndoc’s Finance Director, Alan Levett decided to look for an alternative solution, having been highly satisfied as RotaMaster users for 5 years, he turned to IQUS as an obvious first port of call.

Alan explained, “The paper timesheets were often illegible making the deciphering task extremely time consuming and cumbersome. We had the usual problems that all organisations have with unauthorised absences and late comers. We wanted a fair and accurate system that would be fully integrated with Rota Master.

“We saw time and attendance monitoring as a natural add on for RotaMaster so we approached IQUS and they too had recognised the synergy. IQUS were already developing a new time and attendance module for RotaMaster and we agreed to work closely with them to shape its development from a user perspective.”

The solution: The RotaMaster Time & Attendance module

Biometric Proof of Presence and Attendance Monitoring

Barndoc went live with the new Time & Attendance module in July 2011. The module is, of course, is fully integrated with RotaMaster and automatically captures Barndoc’s workforce time and attendance data using the very latest biometric, fingerprint recognition technology. The data is processed directly in line with Barndoc’s pre-configured HR policy rules to their RotaMaster database.

The nature of out of hours healthcare means that staff can potentially be coming and going at all times of the day and night and Barndoc is no exception. Each member of the circa 240-strong Barndoc workforce have had their thumb prints captured and linked to a unique identification number which is stored in the Rota Master database. As Barndoc staff arrive and leave work they clock in and out by touching the thumb pad on a wall-mounted device. The device requires mains power but needs no connections to internal computer networks or telephone lines as it works via GPRS (mobile phone technology) and is supported by IQUS 24/7.

Barndoc’s Alan Levett said, “This completely eliminates the need for human intervention or manual processes. It is also totally abuse proof. People cannot leave their thumb at home or with a colleague. The rules have been set within the system and we have had wide acceptance by staff. They can see it is completely fair and accurate.”

Comprehensive Exceptions Screen

Having configured the system with Barndoc’s HR and payment policy rules the system picks up where expected attendance times differ from what is happening in reality. In some cases the system is set up to automatically adjust wages – e.g. for lateness – but in other instances the system will highlight exceptions to the manager for review and action.

Alan Levett continues, “Of course there are times when our managers need to ask staff to work overtime and there are other times when staff choose to arrive early or stay late for whatever reason. Rota Master flags each incidence with the relevant manager. The manager only sanctions the pay if the overtime was authorised. It is a much tighter system all round.” 

Output to IRIS Payroll

The attendance data that is captured automatically at Barndoc is fed into their IRIS payroll system. Barndoc is saving a lot of time in payroll processing not only because it’s receiving better quality data automatically, but the new Rota Master Time & Attendance Module has eliminated all need for manual logging and human intervention.


The module comes with a suite of time and attendance reports but IQUS offers a bespoke report building service for Rota Master users, as every organisation is different and has its own set of unique reporting needs.

Alan Levett added, “The report set that comes along with the software as standard is comprehensive, but there have been one or two additional requirements for us. IQUS designated a direct contact for us to work with on bespoke reporting and the turnaround has been fast and they have been very willing to listen to new ideas.”

Barndoc's top five

Barndoc was asked to list the top five business benefits the organisation is seeing as a result of implementing the Rota Master Time & Attendance Module:

£17,000 Annual Savings For Barndoc

Having five monthly payroll runs under our belt, we can predict that in terms of eliminating unnecessary payments for unauthorised shift overtime and lateness Barndoc is forecast to save £17,000 in the next 12 months.

Significant Payroll Efficiency Improvements

Having removed the need for all the manual tasks associated with monitoring and policing time and attendance data, Barndoc has significantly increased productivity and cost efficiencies within the payroll team. Alan Levett explained, “Because all Barndoc’s proof of presence data is captured automatically now, the time it takes to administer the monthly payroll task has been reduced significantly.”

Accurate Payroll Forecasting

Alan Levett told us, “We book our shifts 2 months in advance.  Since implementing this module we now have rostering and payroll working in harmony which means we can predict pay roll costs 2 months ahead.  This is probably the biggest advantage of all to come from our new time and attendance set up because previously we had to wait until we’d run the payroll to get an accurate picture.  In the current climate all organisations are under pressure to keep a tighter rein on costs and Barndoc needs this information to be able to have meaningful conversations with commissioners about the resources required to run our services.”


Users of the Rota Master time and attendance module have the flexibility to configure the software with their own policy rules. They can also choose where to enforce automatic pay adjustments and where to report exceptions for action by their managers. The management team at Barndoc is very pleased with this level of flexibility.

A Fair & Accurate System

Alan Levett said, “We have got exactly what we wanted – a fair and accurate time and attendance system. We get what we pay for!  We have far better quality data, the data is fed directly into payroll automatically and we have staff acceptance across the board. It is a fair and accurate system which places emphasis on staff taking responsibility for their shift attendance and complying with company procedures.”

A professional organisation

Chris Jones, Managing Director of IQUS Limited said, “I am very pleased to see Barndoc enjoying so many significant benefits from this new module. It is a privilege to work with such a professional organisation that appreciates that the smart use of technology can lead to significant improvements in cost and productivity efficiencies. Having worked closely with Barndoc and other RotaMaster customers to fine tune this key module, we have developed a very clear understanding of what users need from time and attendance software  and we are proud to be launching this key module to our user base.”

The final word

The final word goes to Barndoc’s Alan Levett, “I would highly recommend RotaMaster to any organisation wishing to improve time and attendance efficiency, increase control and reduce the costs associated with unauthorised hours worked, absence and lateness.”