December 14, 2021

Kronos Outage: Your Best Response Plan

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Tags: HR

This article has been updated with new links to UKG communications on the outage.

Kronos Executive Vice President Bob Hughes released a statement on December 13, informing Kronos Private Cloud customers that service would be disrupted for several weeks due to a cybersecurity incident. Hughes said, “Given that it may take up to several weeks to restore system availability, we strongly recommend that you evaluate and implement alternative business continuity protocols related to the affected UKG solutions.” The affected tools include UKG Workforce Central, UKG TeleStaff, Healthcare Extensions, and Banking Scheduling Solutions. Customers with on-premises services are not affected.

The system outage is due to ransomware, and while it has not been confirmed, several outlets are speculating that it is linked to the Log4j Zero Day Exploit first reported on December 10. That vulnerability within the Apache Log4j 2 open source logging system has been linked to a growing tally of ransomware attacks.

The site hosing the original statement has gone down for maintenance, but a version of the email sent to customers was posted on Reddit, and UKG has set up a status update page for the outage.

Kronos Outage: A major pain for payroll officers

An outage of HR solutions that will last weeks could mean the lack of access to critical human resources data that ensures that the business runs and its employees are paid, including time tracking and scheduling software. And because the outage happened when many companies were running their payroll to pay out on December 15, payroll officers will be scrambling to restore time clock information that they lost access to. If the company has not backed up their HR data to a separate cloud or on-premise database, this could be a time-consuming and frustrating endeavor.

Also Read: Backup and Recovery: The Keys to Surviving Ransomware

Looking to the next few weeks without time tracking and scheduling software, companies will need to build work schedules and attempt to recreate much of the personal data stored for each employee, including time off requests, banking information, addresses, and contact information. 

How should Kronos Private Cloud customers react?

Many companies will resort to building schedules on paper or spreadsheets in the short term, but as Kronos pointed out in their statement, in order to get back to business as usual while also protecting private personal information, companies will need to implement one or more software systems to gather and store information. 

At minimum, companies will need:

While companies could implement a full-service HCM tool similar to Kronos, the length of time it would take to implement these tools, customize the software, and ensure full coverage for the entire enterprise can take months — and that’s with the careful planning and project management provided by a scheduled software implementation.

Companies reacting to a ransomware attack need to move quickly. Best-of-breed, standalone software with native integrations to other third-party HR software can patch up the gaping data hole left by the Kronos outage. Bonus points if the software includes a self-service portal where employees can enter their data securely and privately, saving HR team data entry time that can be better used getting schedules back to normal.

Also Read: The best HRIS software

Compare top HR software options

1 Rippling

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Rippling is the first way for businesses to manage all of their HR, IT, and Finance — payroll, benefits, computers, apps, corporate cards, expenses, and more — in one unified workforce platform. By connecting every business system to one source of truth for employee data, businesses can automate all of the manual work they normally need to do to make employee changes.

Learn more about Rippling

2 Paycor

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Paycor’s HR software modernizes every aspect of people management, which saves leaders time and gives them the powerful analytics they need to build winning teams. Paycor provides a full suite of HCM solutions with a single source of truth for employee data, so users never have to switch platforms, log-in to multiple systems, re-key data or open multiple spreadsheets. Everyday processes become simplified, allowing organizations to focus on their most important work.

Learn more about Paycor

3 Darwinbox HR Software

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Darwinbox is a unified HRMS platform that lets you manage the complete lifecycle of your employees – from hire to retire. Built for large enterprises, Darwinbox is used by 2M+ users across 700+ global companies such as Mahindra, Tata AIA, More Retail, Adani, Sembcorp, Kopi Kenangan, and more. It is a mobile-first platform that offers self-service capabilities and a great user experience to all your employees.

Learn more about Darwinbox HR Software

4 GoCo

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GoCo is modern HR, benefits, and payroll, built for flexibility and ease-of-use in mind. Manage records, performance, time off, onboarding, benefits, and more all in one place. GoCo is a secure, compliant hub for sending, digitally signing, and organizing your sensitive HR documents and data. Unlike other HRIS platforms, GoCo is built to be flexible enough to support existing processes, policies, and providers, so you don't have to change the way you work just to adopt a modern HR system.

Learn more about GoCo

5 BambooHR

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BambooHR is an award-winning HR platform that helps your growing organizations automate, centralize, and connect your people data all in one place. It gives you a one stop shop to manage data, hire talent, run payroll, and help employees grow.

Learn more about BambooHR

6 Bob

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Meet Bob, the modern HR platform for modern business. With Bob, HR teams get everything they need to operate efficiently and engage employees in one HRIS. Use automation and workflows to save hours on HR admin time. Connect employees from anywhere with a social media-like homepage that drives culture with communications, kudos, and recognition. Centralize all people data in one place for a holistic view. Share accurate reports for stronger insights and better decision-making.

Learn more about Bob


Visit website Work OS is the flexible, no-code Human Resources software that allows HR managers to manage the entire employee lifecycle in one place. Track the recruitment process, onboard new employees with the help of pre-made templates, safely store personal information, plan team-building activities, and use automations to speed up and simplify all these workflows and many more.

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8 Wrike

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Wrike's human resources software is used by more than 20,000 companies across 140 countries. Plan, manage, and report on your HR projects with Wrike's easy-to-use HR software. Keep track of recruitment, payment, onboarding, and management using ready-made templates, powerful workflows, and shared team dashboards. Automate your HR processes using approvals and requests. Enable your teams to share and check real-time updates. Start your free trial now.

Learn more about Wrike

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