County of Marin - News Releases - ATOM Project

For Immediate Release
September 24, 2019

County Ramps Up Software Modernization

Technical upgrades now in final months of implementation

San Rafael, CA – The County of Marin is in the home stretch of a software system implementation that will streamline and modernize the way the County’s administrative staff handles human resources and payroll for more than 2,100 full-time and part-time employees.

ATOM logo with the words finance, payroll, budget and HR The Board of Supervisors authorized staff training to begin in October.
The Marin County Board of Supervisors received an update on the Administrative Technologies of Marin, or the ATOM Project for short, during its September 24 meeting. The Board authorized staff training to begin the week of October 7 as employees prepare to switch from paper timesheets to an all-electronic format.

Eager to increase electronic efficiencies and keep up with technological advances, the County created the ATOM Project, tapping expertise and innovation from multiple County departments. From the start, the ATOM team has encouraged innovation on how the County can provide quality service to residents with its limited resources.

The Board approved a $14 million “not to exceed” project budget in December 2014 and then entered into a contract with vendor Tyler Technologies. Using Tyler software, the project is designed to enhance and standardize business processes and provides operational effectiveness and efficiency.

Staff’s update to the Board included good news that the project is under budget. However, Tyler acquired another company with whom the County had already contracted for a timekeeping component of the bigger project. Tyler needed time to integrate systems with the acquired company, ExecuTime, requiring adjustments to the County’s implementation timeline. This summer and fall, the integration has gone through testing and performed well.

“As we began Phase 2, we experienced delays due to a merger between our HR/payroll and timekeeping systems,” said Roy Given Director of Finance. “We opted to wait until our vendor could integrate two systems. Because we were patient and thorough, we’re confident that our results will be better in the long run. There are a few areas we need to finalize prior to going live.”

ATOM’s Phase 1 was completed in 2016 and involved the finance component of the software module. It is used by more than 300 County employees, or about 10 percent of the workforce. Phase 1 came in at about $1 million under budget because of the savings of staff time and backfill costs.

Phase 2 is the human capital management and payroll component. It is slated to be switched on in the first quarter of 2020, and the project is under budget by approximately $2.5 million.

Assistant County Administrator Angela Nicholson said the Phase 2 implementation plans have been driven by accuracy, automation, and consistency.

“In many of our tests, we were able to match results from our current system with the new system penny to penny,” she said. “We are working with the vendor to resolve a few outstanding issues before we go live and complete the switch.”

Supervisor Judy Arnold serves on the Board’s ATOM Project subcommittee with Board President Kate Sears. “I want our Board, our employees, and the public to know that our County employees who are working on ATOM are dedicated to getting it right,” Arnold said. “This has been an exercise of partnership, patience and progress.”

The ATOM project is aligned with the County’s 5 Year Business Plan.


Angela Nicholson
Assistant County Administrator
County Administrator's Office

3501 Civic Center Drive
Suite 325
San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 473-4396
Email: Angela Nicholson
County Administrator website