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Case Study > Preferred Parking

Charlotte-Based Parking Management Company Finds Its Spot with isolved

Preferred Parking logo

If you’ve parked at a Carolina Panthers game, pulled into the Spectrum Center for a concert or spent any time in the Carolinas, chances are you’ve been a Preferred Parking customer.

Founded in 1961, Preferred Parking manages parking operations for over 200 properties across North and South Carolina. With valet, lots, garages and more, the intricacies of talent and workforce management are quite complex. Not only does each property require unique upkeep, but also requires keeping up with complicated HR and payroll and talent and workforce management needs. It’s why when new leadership moved HR and payroll to Paychex, they spent just one year there before swiftly moving back to isolved.

“There are many moving pieces to parking payroll and HR operations and isolved helps us manage it uniformly so when I was taking back payroll, I required it to be with isolved,” said LeAnne Phifer, senior manager of employment and office services at Preferred Parking. “One particular garage manager, for example, may oversee multiple garages. This means we need to properly attribute time and attendance percentages to each specific location. And, to further complicate matters, one of those properties might be owned by us outright while another may be one we service for a third-party owner – so the labor needs must be allocated properly.”

“Managing locations for other owners means HR as a service is a line of business for Preferred Parking and isolved makes it incredibly easy to allocate payroll, talent and overall HR accurately across any location or employee type.”

Preferred Parking employees are often required to clock in and out of different locations and, with 24/7 operations, isolved allows them to do that on-the-go while isolved Time & Attendance automatically accounts for first-, second- and third-shift pay differences. isolved also ensures that various pay structures are adjusted automatically based on location. This was a very different situation before isolved.

“I am very pleased with isolved,” said Phifer. “The platform is very user friendly, and employees are comfortable with it. When I started, the company was doing payroll in-house and everything was manual. There were paper time cards all over the city of Charlotte. I’d get 100 timecards to manually tally. We needed to get with the times and get the process automated. I went from spending 24 hours a week on payroll back then to 3 hours a week, from start to finish including time and taxes.”

In addition to location allocation, Preferred Parking employs a broad range of employee types, from full-time employees like maintenance individuals and 24/7 call-center representatives to part-time employees checking parking lots and event staff collecting funds and directing traffic. While Preferred Parking employs 120 employees year-round, high-volume days like Panthers games may see upward of 100 event attendants “on the clock.”

“Event-attendant numbers obviously dipped tremendously during the pandemic, and now we are trying to build back that talent pool,” said Phifer. “During the height of the social-distancing measures, we relied heavily on isolved’s expertise in Paycheck Protection Program and maintaining business continuity amid unprecedented times. I attended isolved webinars on how to move forward almost weekly from March 2020-May 2020.”

Now that events are back to “normal”, Preferred Parking can easily onboard new employees digitally. This helps meet the consumer-like expectations of employees and gets people working, and paid, faster. Quicker onboarding also improves Preferred Parking’s customer experience in the process due to fully staffed and expertly managed operations.

“I love the onboarding experience,” said Phifer. “Rather than doing paper onboarding, new-hire paperwork and filling out state and federal tax forms manually, isolved has saved us at least 8 hours per employee when it comes to onboarding.”

The next step for Preferred Parking is to onboard employees from isolved Go (the mobile app) to isolved Adaptive Employee Experience, a progressive Web app (PWA) approach to ensure the employee experience is always accessible and available.

“People are creatures of habit so when we moved from paper time clocks to app-based time clocks many years ago, there was resistance,” said Phifer. “Now that we’re moving from an app to the Adaptive Employee Experience, the user experience is improved but it will take some time to get employees comfortable again. We’re excited though for an employee to have the same experience on their phones in the field as they do on their desktop with connectivity never being a problem.”

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