Workday moves to testing phase

Thousands of hours have gone into configuring the Workday software system that will be used for financial, human capital and payroll management processes at Iowa State. Now it's time for testing -- and lots of it.

"The work in the configure and prototype phase was building the Workday system to be specific for Iowa State," said Kristen Constant, interim vice president and chief information officer. "Now we're transitioning to the testing phase and preparing the whole Iowa State community for this change."

Building a foundation

Hundreds of Iowa State employees were involved in the initial architect phase, which gathered ISU's requirements for the system, and the configure and prototype phase.

"We listened to what the requirements were during the architect phase," Constant said. "We moved into configure and prototype, where we built what that should look like, based on the feedback from Iowa State."

Constant said the prototype was examined to make sure what was built in Workday matches Iowa State's needs. The scope of the system has been defined, including how it integrates with other campus systems and entities (such as Ames Lab and the ISU Foundation).

"The foundation has been laid and now we're refining it," Constant said. "This is a big step because now we know what it's going to look like. We now need to test it to make sure it's working right."

Fine tuning

Constant said the WorkCyte team will be taking the system through its paces, tackling business processes -- such as hiring a new employee or purchasing equipment -- from start to finish.

"The testing phase begins with very specific cases and moves to broader, cross-system, end-to-end cases," Constant said.

By starting small and building on the testing scenarios, Constant said the WorkCyte team will be able to tailor the information delivered later in workshops and demonstrations.

"That culminates 10 months from now with extensive training," Constant said. "The WorkCyte team is using this testing phase to prepare for going live with the new system in July 2019."

Awareness campaign

Expect to see more about Workday as the change management team ramps up its outreach efforts, offering employees a closer look at the system and how it will work. That includes more workshops, demonstrations and communication through multiple channels (website, videos, social media and more).

"Many more people on campus will become involved," Constant said. "We'll be preparing them for what's coming."