Federal payroll workers are falling back on Excel spreadsheets, Google and, in some cases, pen and paper to make up for the litany of problems with the Phoenix pay system which, several staffers say, is weakening the integrity of the entire compensation system.
Workers from offices in Winnipeg, Edmonton and the central pay centre in Miramichi, N.B., who spoke to CBC News on condition of anonymity, said they’re often forced to come up with creative solutions to the pay system’s glitches.
“They do what they have to do,” said Donna Lackie, former national president of the union representing the pay workers, who recently visited the centre in Miramichi.
“If one is able to discover a tool for a certain pay function, they share that with each other.”
Some were even using Google to try to find answers to their Phoenix questions in the pay system’s early days, she said. Since its debut 18 months ago, tens of thousands of public servants across Canada have been improperly paid.
One staffer, who has worked in the federal pay system for more than 25 years, told CBC she questions all the transactions coming out of Phoenix.