Now Solutions Brings HR App to DB2
June 14, 2005 Alex Woodie
Companies can now run the database portion of Now Solutions human resources and payroll software on IBM DB2, including DB2/400, the company announced last week. Now Solutions’ emPath software provides an array of capabilities for tracking employee hours and benefits, and now supports all major database platforms on all major server operating systems.
Based in Forth Worth, Texas, Now Solutions has been developing human resources and payroll software since 1972, when a company named Argonaut released its first HR and payroll package. This package was modified for client-server computing in 1994 by Ross Systems, which acquired the Argonaut package in 1990. Then, in 2001, Now Solutions bought the HR and payroll software and assets from Ross Systems, and released the first Web-enabled version of the product, emPath 6.0.
In 2004, Now Solutions introduced emPath version 6.3, a HR management system written in a combination of Microfocus COBOL and Microsoft C#. This new release introduced self-service capabilities, such as a Web-based time clock that supports the full array of timekeeping and payroll rules, as well as new privacy tracking features. These features bolstered the package’s repertoire, which included recruiting, position control, benefits, absence and attendance tracking, employee reviews, career planning, payroll, self-service, and document workflow capabilities. The software complies with all American regulatory mandates, such as Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity and the Family Leave Bill, as well as Canadian requirements, such as Record of Employment and T4/T4As.
Last week, the company announced that emPath version 6.3, which itself runs on a Windows server, will now work with DB2 databases running on Windows, Linux, Unix, and iSeries servers, in addition to Microsoft SQL Server and Oracle databases. With one-third of the marketplace using DB2, supporting IBM’s database was a good move strategically, says Kent Orgain, Now Solutions’ vice president of development.
Luiz Claudio Valdetaro, chief technology officer with Vertical Computer Systems, Now Solutions parent company, says support for DB2/400 was added to make it easier for customers to integrate emPath with other applications running on the iSeries server. “If a user already has DB2 running on an iSeries server and decides to install emPath for DB2 running on a different platform than iSeries (for example, Windows), this customer would have to manage two database platforms,” Valdetaro says via e-mail.
There is one little “gotcha” for organizations that want to run the emPath database on their iSeries server, however. iSeries shops will need to license IBM’s DB2 Connect, which provides an access point to DB2 running on iSeries and zSeries mainframes, to connect the emPath application with the DB2/400 server. Pricing for DB2 Connect Enterprise Edition starts at $3,975.
Now Solutions, which says it’s working to support DB2 on zSeries for a future release, says emPath licenses typically range from $50,000 to $800,000. For more information, visit www.nowsolutions.com.
This article has been corrected since it was first published. Luiz Claudio Valdetaro was misidentified, and his name was misspelled. IT Jungle regrets the error. [Correction made 6/17/05.]