In 2020, UofL embarked on a multi-year web improvement project to completely overhaul, modernize and improve the university’s digital presence for students, faculty and staff and students. In order to simplify and enhance the day-to-day lives of employees, the decision was made to transition away from the university’s outdated PeopleSoft HR software to a newer, more accessible system that can stand the test of time in the coming years.
In regard to this necessary change, President Bendapudi stated, “a university can only be a great place to work if it is able to provide the resources necessary for its people to be most effective.”
PeopleSoft, an enterprise management system developed nearly 30 years ago, has several inefficiencies that contributed to increasing costs and a poor user experience. In addition to these problems, the parent platform service, Oracle, recently announced that they will stop supporting the PeopleSoft HR software by 2031. Given these challenges, the university began the search for a new and improved enterprise management system.
When tasked to find a replacement for PeopleSoft, the Information Technology Services team worked diligently to identify the system that would best address the needs of employees, as well as the great place to work goals of the 2019-2022 Strategic Plan. After working with various members of the campus community and engaging over 77 stakeholders across 20 departments for feedback over the last year, the Workday software was selected as the best system for the university and its employees.
Workday is an industry leader that provides a unified system for Human Capital Management (HCM). The implementation of the modern cloud-based system will offer timely and cost-effective functionality to employees while simplifying and standardizing numerous HR processes across the university. The functionality of the software will improve hiring processes, reduce payroll calculation and processing errors, upgrade security and provide users with a more positive overall HR and payroll experience.
While introducing the Workday software to Staff Senators in November of 2020, Mary Alexander-Conte, director of disbursement services, stated, “it’s going to make our lives a lot easier, both internal to payroll and external to all of our departments.”
In addition to its user-friendly dashboards, Workday also includes mobile-friendly technology that will allow employees to access and change personal information, view paystubs, find business directories and access various HR polices and information all from their personal mobile devices. The intuitive mobile interface will provide users with immediate access to time entry and approvals, and Workday’s bi-annual system updates will ensure that employees always have access to the most efficient and reliable HCM system available.
Other leading educational institutions and organizations have already taken advantage of the host of benefits offered by Workday, and now UofL has begun the phased transition to the software. Over the next six years, Workday will be integrated across several areas of the university in phases. First, Workday’s HR software will be used to replace our Peoplesoft HR system. After Workday HR is implemented then the university will start the Workday Finance journey.
Starting in July of 2022, all units and departments will utilize Workday HR. In the coming months, readiness and development sessions will be conducted along with the university’s software implementation partner, Huron. To get the campus ready for the Workday HR system, the project team will leverage the project web page, training sessions, video guides and step-by-step aids to assist employees during the transition.
Employees are also encouraged to share questions and feedback with representatives of UofL’s Change Ambassador Network. The Change Ambassador Network kicked off in April under the leadership of Melissa Shuter, executive director of operation support services. The 50 employees serving as change ambassadors in this network act as representatives for every unit and department across the university, and also include representatives from the Faculty and Staff Senates, Commissions, and lead fiscal officers. The feedback collected through the change ambassadors, as well as town halls, will be used to refine and improve the system moving forward. Additional information including the current implementation timeline, the list of change ambassadors and FAQS can be found on the UofL Workday website.
As part of the Great Place Journey campaign kicked off by President Bendapudi to keep the campus community informed about each of the major projects and initiatives happening in the university, regular updates about the implementation of Workday and other major university initiatives will be regularly provided to the campus community via UofL News, the UofL Today employee newsletter and the Student News and Events newsletter.