A German software company has been chosen to test out its replacement for the Phoenix pay system.

The Treasury Board of Canada announced Friday SAP beat out other shortlisters Ceridian and Workday after several months of evaluation.

“Today’s announcement is an important milestone toward building an efficient next generation solution that is better aligned with the complexity of the federal government’s HR and pay structure,” said digital government minister Joyce Murray in a news release.

“I am focused on moving this forward while taking the time to get it right.”

The Phoenix pay system by IBM has caused tens of thousands of federal public servants to be improperly paid since it launched just over four years ago.

The government announced plans to replace it in 2018.

“Our members have been called on to support building a new solution that serves their needs, and I am pleased to see that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel,” said Debi Daviau, president of federal public servant union PIPSC, in the release.

Neither the government nor SAP explained how the software differs from Phoenix nor how long the test may take.

Public Services and Procurement Canada is leading the government’s efforts to stabilize Phoenix.

As of its last update Jan. 22, the government said nearly half of federal public servants had some kind of pay issue and it was working on nearly 200,000 issues beyond what it considered normal.

Some employees have more than one issue.

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