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Avoiding Lawson Absence Management Mishaps

On upgrading from Time Accrual (TA) to Absence Management (LP).
Jan | 30 | 2009

Jan | 30 | 2009


Many Lawson clients will soon be faced with upgrading from Time Accrual (TA) to Absence Management (LP). According to my less-than-scientific methods, very few clients have yet made the plunge. The plank is burning; Lawson is decommissioning TA at the end of May 2010.

To be sure, LP offers a great deal more functionality compared to its predecessor (including proper FMLA leave plans that I discussed a while back). However, many people don’t understand a few interdependencies among the codes. In this article, I discuss one of the most commonly made mistakes made during LP projects.

Codes Galore

LP offers clients the ability to set up the following types of codes:

  • Reason codes
  • Service codes
  • Reason classes
  • Service classes

This is completely overwhelming, but that’s the way that Lawson decided to go. What’s more, service codes should be linked to pay codes on PR20.4 to ensure that only certain hours count when calculating eligibility for leave (via LP251).

Reason codes

The major point of the reason code is to decrement balances, but this can only happen with the proper connections, as we will see. Reason codes (set up on LP09.2) need to be established before they can be linked to service codes, although you can do this on the fly.


Service Codes

After establishing reason codes in the previous step, it is now time to link them to service codes. On LP08.2 Service Code, service codes can be tied to reason codes.


Note how the REG service code (linked to the REG Regular pay code on PR20.4) is left blank. Why? Because employees paid regular hours do not have those hours decrement any plan balances. Service code SICK, however, is the opposite; its hours decrement employee sick balances.

Service Class and Code Relationships

It’s imperative to link service codes and classes via LP08.3. This (along with the previous two screens) will decrement employee leave balances for LP time used. In the screen shot below, I have done this for the LOA service code and class. These need to be set up for each plan—if balances need to be decremented.


Payroll Rule

Along with the proper service class on the PR rule, it is imperative to link the service class to the payroll rule.


LP03.5 enforces the payroll rule (see below) for the time records entered. LP03.5 determines if an employee can “go negative”, one of the nice features of LP.

Time Record

Let’s look at the example of Mike Portnoy, the real-life drummer of Dream Theater but a fictitious employee here. Mike has several types of pay on PR36.


The PR140 shows the gross to net for this pay period:


Next, his LP140 shows the hours taken (transaction type = 61):


Look at the second page of the LP140 output:


Now, let’s see the third page:


And, finally, the fourth page:


It’s absolutely essential that you see Type 61 transactions. If you don’t, then employee balances will not decrement.


LP can be a beast with all of its codes and interdependencies. Listen to experienced and knowledgeable consultants (like me, on most days) and test, test, test before going live.

This piece originally ran on the Lawson Guru newsletter.


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