Reliance Standard and Matrix Receive US Patent for Workforce Optimization Tool

  • Absence Radar recognized for innovation in absence management

Absence Radar, a technology platform that ensures employers have critical information to plan, staff and manage productivity, has been awarded a United States patent. Developed by Matrix Absence Management, Absence Radar is a fixture on Reliance Standard integrated absence and employee benefits programs.

“That’s the challenge, but then again, that’s also the fun”

Leveraging an intuitive calendar interface and just-in-time notifications, Absence Radar provides Human Resource teams and department managers a detailed, current, at-a-glance view of paid and unpaid employee absence so they can make business-critical workforce decisions in real time.

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“Our industry coined the phrase ‘absence management’ decades ago, but until recently that has really meant tracking employee absence while maintaining compliance with Federal and State regulations,” said Mark Marsters, senior vice president and chief operating officer of Reliance Standard, and president of Matrix Absence Management. “With Absence Radar, we’ve put 360-degree visibility directly into the line manager’s hands so they can staff, train and plan instead of just reacting. It’s unique technology and process, and we knew it was patent-worthy.”

With Absence Radar, employee absence data is permissioned based on each company’s unique organizational structure, so managers receive access only to their employees. They are notified of any new absence requests and any changes to existing absences, including scheduled, continuous and intermittent leave for FMLA, State paid and unpaid leave, company-sponsored leave and disability. Each notification also provides direct, one-click access to each employee’s claims examiner, as well as customized instructions to help facilitate the return to work process, including any restrictions.

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“Our product development has always been driven by our clients’ feedback and their evolving business and HR challenges,” Gordon Smith, chief solutions officer for Matrix, said. “We were first in market with automated leave status notifications a decade ago, but we hadn’t yet gotten a fix on making the data usable and contextual. The fully integrated Absence Radar calendar is the game-changer. It puts all available data in front of the people who need it, in real time.”

The interactive Absence Radar calendar displays 12 consecutive months of absence data – past, present and five months into the future. It also shows employees returning to work from an approved leave, and callouts if the returning employee has a work restriction.

“We’ve received high marks from brokers, consultants and – most importantly – our clients since Absence Radar debuted in 2018,” said Tim Suchecki, national practice leader for Reliance Standard. “Radar was developed with specific and ongoing producer and client feedback, so adoption was streamlined compared to typical technology launches.”

“The most dynamic opportunity is that Absence Radar takes information and makes it actionable at the people-leader level, not just Operations or HR,” Suchecki said. “With the adoption of fully integrated HCM systems, and our ability to integrate with those behind the scenes, this isn’t an absence management tool so much as it is a strategic productivity tool.”

“Advances in access and customization and convenience across every business and consumer tech platform have significantly raised expectations across the board,” Gordon Smith observed. “People expect a comparable level of convenience and capabilities with any product or service they engage. Those expectations don’t change just because you are an insurance company.”

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