Workday customers should all have their calendars marked for September 9th 2017, the second of Workday’s semiannual releases (referred to as “W29”) for 2017. Each semiannual release comes with major changes to the Workday platform and includes enhancements that have a significant impact on business processes and reporting. This upcoming semiannual release includes major user experience redesigns and added features and functionality enhancements for HCM (Human Capital Management) and Financial customers. The Workday 29 Release will have a major impact on your current Workday environment and new features will enable better user adoption for your team. 

Three Reasons Why Workday Semiannual Releases Should Be Your Team's Top Priority:

FinServ Consulting has extensive experience advising clients' IT, HR, and Finance departments through Workday releases. The table below highlights some of the key updates in the upcoming Workday 29 Release:

Note: Per Workday’s forward looking statement, these updates are subject to change and not guaranteed as part of the release. 

The table above only scratches the surface of the many W29 release updates that may be applicable to your firm. It’s critical that your team thoroughly researches and tests the new updates in your Preview environment.

FinServ has advised both Workday HCM and Finanical clients through Major Semiannual releases. As part of our methodology, we have organized the release preparation into five key steps. Clients must  Assess the release's impact on their business, Plan release feature testing and rollouts, Test both new features and current configurations, Document required environment configuration changes and lastly, Communicate to users what the release means for them. 

Assess: Determine how the business will be impacted by the release. Whether you’re an HCM or Financials customer, you’ll need to wade through the Workday Community (Workday’s FAQ page) to determine what release features will have the greatest impact on your processes.

FinServ recommends breaking out the enhancements into three categories:

Plan: After identifying the key features related to your business and categorizing them into the three groupings, prioritize testing. Build a plan for how your team will configure, test, and adopt the functionality. We advise clients to commit to a Workday project plan with dates, time estimates, and resource allocations to ensure Major Enhancements and Behind-the-Scenes Enhancements are functioning properly and Future Functionalities don’t take a backseat to competing team initiatives.

For example, to ensure the Worker Profile is configured appropriately, clients will need to configure a Worker’s:

Test: Your team will need to devote significant hours to test the new Semiannual releases’ impact. Testing in Workday’s Preview tenant is the surest way to ensure a smooth Workday Semiannual release. Your preview tenant should be configured exactly how you would like your environment to function with the new release. FinServ advises clients to do three types of testing prior to the release date:

Document: Your team will need to easily recreate the configurations into Production come September 9th. We recommend that clients create a spreadsheet detailing all the Major Enhancements and the steps taken to configure these features. It is also important that all user guides are updated to include new processes and enhancements.

An example of effective Major Enhancements documentation:

Communicate: New enhancements, like a change to the user interface, should be communicated to your workers. Appropriate and timely communication will ensure users understand how they will be impacted and how to navigate the latest version of Workday. The new release is also an excellent opportunity to remind employees that they have a robust platform that caters to their HR and Finance needs – they should use it!

By following these steps your team is well on their way to an easy Workday 29 Release. In addition to release consultations, FinServ Consulting offers operational assessments and Workday implementations. FinServ has experienced HR and Finance consultants that have worked with clients on vendor selections and implementations of various HR and Finance platforms.  For more information on Workday or for general HR and Finance platform inquiries, please contact info@finservconsulting.com

About FinServ Consulting

 FinServ Consulting is an independent experienced provider of business consulting, systems development, and integration services to alternative asset managers, global banks and their service providers. Founded in 2005, FinServ delivers customized world-class business and IT consulting services for the front, middle and back office, providing managers with optimal and first-class operating environments to support all investment styles and future asset growth. The FinServ team brings a wealth of experience from working with the largest and most complex asset management firms and global banks in the world.

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