If you’ve ever tried outlining business-critical processes or managing key business activities within the Workday system, you know that the the configuration process can get a little complicated — especially without the right team, skills, and resources.

Fortunately, this is where Workday Configurations come in.

Read on to learn more about configurations in Workday and what they can do for your organization.

What is Workday Configuration?

Workday Configurations are outlined within the Business Process Framework (BPF), and they provide flexible, easily adaptable solutions to design critical business processes and other business flows to meet the specific needs of any organization. Each outlined Workday business process (BP) contains an automated workflow with a set of configurable tasks that can be tailored to the specific Workday application you’re working with.

Workday BPs can be helpful in managing key business activities, such as hiring an employee, sourcing materials, or recording a business transaction. Here are a few key Workday applications that are often configured with custom Workday BPs:

  • Workday Human Capital Management (HCM)
  • Workday Financials
  • Workday Supply Chain Management (SCM)

How Can Workday Configurations Improve Your Operations?

Here’s a quick look at 4 ways Workday configurations can improve your operations…

  • Easier Navigation: Businesses seek configurations that offer user-friendly solutions, maintain alignment with previous software, and provide a greater sense of familiarity across teams.
  • Increased Productivity: With more familiar features, users are more likely to adopt new systems, reducing learning curves, improving employee learning, increasing efficiency, and enhancing overall employee productivity.
  • Meeting User Needs: With well-defined Workday configurations, users can personalize their own experiences and cater their Workday solutions to organizational needs across job roles, responsibilities, and preferences.
  • Creating a Seamless Brand: Workday can be used to create a consistent and cohesive brand look (and, we all know people love consistency!), making it easier for companies to provide brand-specific content and offer the resources needed for improved brand recognition and loyalty.

Key Features of the Workday Business Process Framework

The Workday Business Process Framework offers easy-to-use tools that enable users to configure and maintain core business flows, making it easier for them to connect their Workday applications and any other external systems or services.

BPF uses a reliable runtime engine to establish and evaluate process definitions, condition rules, roles, and step by step instructions to help users better manage their Workday processes.

Here are a few main benefits of the Workday BPF:

  1. Uses a single framework to configure, maintain, and extend more than 550 pre-built processes.
  2. Define Workday functionality within the system and between users.
  3. Provides an audit trail to help users keep track of changes and approvals in transaction data.
  4. Gives users the functionality needed to modify process flows with no code required.
  5. Separate and scale process flows to fit local, national, or global requirements.

How to Configure Workday

Configurations in Workday require the right approach, employees, implementation and support teams, and business process administration procedures to be successfully implemented, integrated, and maintained.

Choosing the best approach for your organization and its needs is a crucial step in lowering administrative costs, improving system and operational support, and enhancing the efficiency of your business operations.

Here are the main Workday Configuration and Business Process Administration approaches:

Centralized Business Process Administration

With a centralized business process, one group, department, or function in the organization is tasked with building, configuring, administering, and maintaining all Workday functions.

Whether an organization chooses to have its IT department handle all things off or pass the torch to a centralized Workday HCM or Financials team, the chosen group will carry all the responsibility of the configurations and system maintenance.

Centralized BPs enable users to:

  • Simplify change management procedures and controls
  • Align business strategy with Workday Security groups and models
  • Use fewer technical resources to carry out configurations

Here are a few key things to consider with centralized business processes:

  1. Clearly define business requirements to keep up with changes in the system.
  2. Establish support teams (i.e., primary, secondary) to maintain proper business functions and administration.
  3. Build support teams based on technical and contextual business knowledge.
  4. Maintain service level agreements to minimize system disruptions.

Decentralized Business Process Administration

Decentralized business processes require multiple groups or departments to handle the construction, administration, and configuration of Workday operations within a single functional area.

Decentralized BPs are often common in larger enterprises whose business model has clearly defined functional and departmental responsibilities.

With decentralized BPs, users can:

  • Improve change management processes and reduce system risk
  • Increase the speed of operation or system changes throughout their organization
  • Use better access controls to keep track of security groups and operations

Here are a few main considerations to think about with decentralized BPs:

  1. Manage and maintain speed of organizational changes.
  2. Build customized, segment-based security groups.
  3. Track system changes to determine cross-functional impact.
  4. Determine necessary technical requirements and change control procedures.

Critical .vs. Non-critical Business Process Administration

With this approach, organizations divide Workday administration roles and responsibilities by the criticality of the associated business processes and define the criteria of each critical process, including financial and regulatory considerations.

This model manages critical BPs with a centralized approach, and uses decentralized BP administration to monitor and manage non-critical operations.

The critical .vs. non-critical approach gives users the ability to:

  • Use enhanced flexibility and control create new functionality for BP management operations
  • Distribute tasks and responsibilities to reduce administrative burden
  • Offer improved system support for risk management and compliance initiatives
  • Enable least-privileged access principles to keep sensitive data secure

Here are a few things to consider when using this approach to Workday configuration:

  1. Continually manage and update business criticality ratings to monitor changes.
  2. Determine the groups responsible for establishing and monitoring ratings.
  3. Align oversight and governance processes with overall business needs.
  4. Monitor support needed for security administration teams in managing security group and criticality rating change management processes.

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Other Workday Configuration Examples

Now that you understand what Workday Configuration is and have a better idea of each configuration approach, let’s take a closer look at a few Workday Configuration examples.

Workday Rule-Based Configuration

Rule-based configuration allows system administrators to create and maintain configurations that are more defined and easier to monitor and gives them the visibility needed to outline precise business process definitions to align with any relevant criteria.

Essentially, your company or organization can use any available field to initiate the condition rule and drive the appropriate business process.

With rule-based configuration, Workday users can:

  • Improve tenant performance by specifying business process conditions and eliminating repeated executions that waste valuable time.
  • Improve visibility, testing, and troubleshooting by limiting the steps needed for business process configuration and eliminating the need for multiple condition rules and extra steps.

Workday Security Configuration

In Workday, security groups are crucial in deciding who gets access to certain business information, objects, and processes, creating security roles, and constraining employees to their outlined roles and responsibilities within the organization.

Workday, without proper security configurations, information may end up in the wrong hands, placing your company and your information at risk.

Security configuration in Workday allows users to:

  • Define which employees have access to which information, objects, and processes
  • Categorize employees into user-based, role-based, process-maintained, or standard worker groups
  • Assign security roles and groups to a worker’s employee record
  • Add and constrain users to certain roles, groups, or responsibilities (i.e., location, supervisory organization, etc.)
  • Create custom groups, if needed

Workday SSO Configuration

Workday SSO, or Single Sign-On, provides safe and secure single sign-on access to on-premise or cloud applications by using a single login credential. Workday offers two different configuration options for SSO: IdP-initiated SAML SSO or SP-initiated SAML SSO.

With Workday SAML configuration and SSO solutions, users can sign into their Workday system without the need for additional passwords, sign-on checkpoints, or user keys.

Workday SSO and SAML configuration enables users to:

  • Eliminate the need for external sign-on tools or requirements
  • Provide single sign-on access for employees
  • Use adaptive authentication criteria (i.e., location, IP address, Device ID, etc.) to improve SSO functionality and security
  • Limit number of devices a single user can use to access the Workday system
  • Provide user authentication for relevant, reliable external sources (i.e., Databases, Directories, etc.)

Workday Payroll Configuration

Workday Payroll is one of the most widely used applications in the Workday HCM suite, and it provides the right resources and functionality needed to maximize your company’s Workday investment.

And, by using Workday’s core record system to manage Payroll and HCM data and keep up with record changes, users are able to maintain comprehensive control over their data and associated business processes.

Workday Payroll configuration gives users the opportunity to:

  • Create balances, accumulations, and balance periods to meet reporting needs
  • Use pay groups to segment employees based on organizational needs
  • Configure security roles and permissions to improve visibility and collaboration throughout the Workday system
  • Manage pay edits, overdue calculations, and specific earnings for certain employees or security groups

Getting Started with Workday

Whether you’re just getting started on your journey with Workday, you’ve been live for years, or you find yourself anywhere in between, our team of senior-level Workday consultants is here to help. They have extensive experience in virtually every Workday module, application, and tool, and, even better, they want to help.

Your system. Your needs. Our expertise. That’s the name of the game at Surety Systems.

How Can We Help?

Need help configuring your Workday system to keep up with information, roles, and requirements for new hires? Our consultants have you covered. Just need an extra hand navigating security group or system configuration requirements? They can help with that too.

And, to give you a better idea of what to expect when partnering with us, we’ve included a snapshot of one of our Workday Configuration consultants:

Surety Senior Workday Configurations Consultant

  • 5+ years of Workday experience as a Techno-Functional consultant 
  • 10 years of IT experience in Energy, Finance, HealthCare, Higher Ed and Engineering technology fields
  • Expertise in Workday Configurations, Integrations, reporting, security, testing and migrations
  • Expert knowledge in Workday Core HR, Staffing, Academics, Student, Core & Advanced Compensation, Payroll, Benefits, Absence, Time Tracking, Talent & Recruitment modules
  • Experience maintaining all the Business process definitions across domains and any configuration changes required

Wherever you find yourself in your Workday journey, our consultants have the right skills and experience to lead you to success — the first time.

Contact us today to learn more or get started with one of our Workday experts!