Your Vision Achieved Part 1: Planning for a Superior Workday Employee Experience

Leaders who achieve their vison have thought through how to optimize their people, their processes and their technology.  Workday delivers a modern interface with easy to use click icons, making the application one of the highest rated applications on the market today.[1]  The enterprise software implementation, however, is not without it’s pitfalls.  Often, leaders delegate implementing their vision to resources who often overlook how to effectively deploy a suite of applications.  They fail to realize that employee experience is a priority.  It affects everything. 

A key component to successfully deploying Workday is having a strategy on how employees will use the system.  Creating a superior employee experience does not magically happen.  It must be planned and considered during all phases of the deployment.  In this first, of a two-part series, I will show how to plan in order to create a superior employee experience when deploying Workday. 

Define a Project Mission Statement:   A Superior Employee Experience

Project mission statements are used to align resources to achieve an overall goal.  It answers the question, why are we doing this?  With mission statements, achieving a leader’s vision begins taking shape.  Resources begin to understand the business objective and begin to formulate in their minds how the vision can become a reality.  A mission statement that includes, “we will create a superior experience for our employees”, will prioritize their objective to focus on the employee.  It adds that employee experience is of utmost importance, it won’t be ignored when making crucial design decisions on what will be implemented and how.

Example Mission Statement: “We will deploy Workday such that Workday provides information to the employee at the right time and to the right person.  Information is accurate, processes accelerate decision making, and the employee experience is superior.”

Develop an Employee Experience Strategy

Strategy determines how to achieve the vision and the mission statement.  It sets the priorities for the project and how project decisions are made.  A strategy that prioritizes creating a superior employee experience will define how employees will interact with Workday.  A Workday deployment strategy includes whether mobile will be deployed first or in a subsequent phase.  Take for example an ambulance company whose majority of employees do not sit at a desk 8 hours a day.  For this company, the Workday deployment strategy will prioritize the use of Workday’s mobile capabilities.  The strategy would outline that mobile is first.  It would state that the company will maximize the Workday configuration to enable its employees to use mobile devices.

In a recent posting, Workday’s Senior Vice President for User Experience, Joe Korngiebel, describes how important the employee experience is to Workday.  He states, “companies recognize that people are more likely to engage, produce, and get value from their software investments when their software works the way they expect it to.” He argues that the younger generation expects to use their mobile devices for work, but with Workday it is important that all employees have a comfort level.     

Key Point: “Creating a superior employee experience considers how employees will interact with Workday, what devices will be used, and what is the priority of maximizing Workday to meet the needs of the business.”

Develop a Workday deployment strategy by knowing who is going to be doing what and when in Workday.  Create a strategy to decide how the project will be planned to meet the business needs that are unique to your company.

Base Decisions: Creating a Superior Employee Experience

A key component to creating a superior employee experience is to make the implementation decision making process centered how employees will use Workday.  Plan to focus design decisions around whether the decision will create a positive employee experience or a negative employee experience.  Deciding whether an approval process requires a certain number of approvals, or who should initiate a business process, all impact the employee experience.  An optimized business process design greatly enhances the employee experience; whereas, over engineered processes greatly decrease the employee experience. 

Deciding how to control information, and designing process flow, such that the employee experience is superior in Workday is crucial to the overall success of the project.  It affects a number of key success factors, like user adoption.  By planning to make decisions centered on creating a superior employee experience, the Workday application will deliver the right information to the right person at the right time.

Measure: Creating a Superior Employee Experience

Create key performance indicators and align the project work activity to measure how well the project is creating a superior employee experience.  Look for indicators that determine and show that a superior employee experience is created.  An important indicator is how well data conversion is going.  Data conversion creates a superior employee experience by ensuring data is accurate and complete.  A key indicator for creating a superior employee experience is when data is taken for granted.  Because when its wrong, the employee experience is severely damaged.

Side bar:  Can you imagine what the employee experience would be like if they see they see that they are in the wrong position, with the wrong pay and report to the wrong manager?

Planning for a superior Workday employee experience requires thoughtful consideration on how employees will interact with Workday.  Don’t assume Workday will magically create a superior employee experience that matches your company’s needs.  Though, Workday provides the tools to create a superior employee experience, developing a plan to achieve it cannot be overlooked.  Part Two will outline what is most important when creating superior Workday employee experience and the tools Workday provides its customers to make it happen.


[1]  Gartner, Inc., “2016 Magic Quadrant for Cloud HCM Suites for Midmarket and Large Enterprises,” by Ron Hanscome, Chris Pang, Jeff Freyermuth, Helen Poitevin, Melanie Lougee, Sam Grinter, 16 June 2016.