Every year at the PDS conference the Brainstorming event occurs. This is where all the attendees meet in groups, organized by specialty, to discuss ideas that they would like to see implemented in future releases of Vista. The groups include, benefits, human resources, payroll, technical and system administration. Each attendee is asked to bring their top five “wish list” items to discuss with their team. The discussions can be lively, and many times solutions are found for a particular item during these discussions. Each idea is voted on and the top five items from each team is submitted for future consideration to be implemented in the base Vista product. Actually, all ideas are reviewed by the PDS team, but the top five will receive greatest consideration.

As for the type of ideas that you might submit*, they can range from small or large. You might want to submit an idea to make navigating the system easier, maybe a way to retrieve data in a different manner, or perhaps you have an idea to add functionality to the salary administration process. If you don’t have five ideas to submit don’t worry, bring what you have, but don’t forget to talk to your users as they might have ideas of their own you will want to submit. 

Now, to answer the question, does it work? Absolutely, the PDS Brainstorming process has been in existence for many years and I can say that many of my ideas have been implemented.  I’ve listed some of the ideas that I have submitted over the years that are now in base product.  

  • Translation – ability to change the labels
  • Location security – ability to secure by location
  • Alphabet look up – a different method of looking up values in a table
  • Additional names – different names for W-2’s, paychecks and other defined codes
  • Elimination of the requirement for Home phone number
  • Rich text posting
  • History editor – select which columns should write to history

Recently, in release 7.0.2, my wish list item of being able to secure user fields was implemented. I’m also excited that one of my long-standing wish list items is going to be released in the upcoming payroll beta, the ability to specify an alternate ACH deposit for special payroll runs, such as a bonus.

You can see that the PDS Brainstorming process does work. PDS makes it a priority to review ideas and take user ideas and implement them whenever it makes sense. So, start thinking about what you would like to see in Vista. It may be that you will see your idea in a future release.

*PDS is pleased to announce a new process for collecting Wish List ideas utilizing the service center.  All registered attendees will be receiving an email explaining the details in the coming weeks.

Meribeth Carter
US Director, Human Resources Operations
Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP