There are a multitude of reasons why you may need a new HR technology.

Maybe you…

  • Never had one to begin with (please don’t tell us you’ve been using Excel for all of your HR needs!)
  • Aren’t happy with your current solution
  • Want to move to SaaS* (software as a service)
  • Need more software functionality

*Software as a Service (also known as “SaaS,” “on-demand software,” and “web-based software”): A licensing and delivery model in which the software is centrally hosted and offered on a subscription basis.

If you’ve selected Workday®, great*! You’re well on your way to a customized HR technology solution that will increase your efficiency and better your processes.

*If you haven’t selected an HR technology solution just yet, let us help. We will learn about your goals and walk you through the entire selection process.

What happens now?

Get excited because you are ready to embark on a Workday® implementation! Use this guide to get an idea of how the process works and get valuable tips for a successful go-live.

Before you begin…

Whether you are going live with Workday® for the first time or this is one of many times you’ve deployed Workday® products, as with most things, careful preparation before you begin an implementation is key.

iconMake sure data is accessible and clean it up if necessary

iconEnsure you have the right team, which should include:

iconSet realistic expectations

Not preparing properly for a Workday® implementation can lead to disaster (believe us, we’ve seen it all!). Read more about why failures occur and how you can avoid one.

Phases of a Workday® implementation

A Workday® implementation is typically completed in six phases: plan, architect, configure, test, deploy, and support.


Phase 1: Plan

iconKickoff meeting to establish:

  • Internal and external teams
  • Roles and responsibilities
  • Budget
  • Timeline and project plan
  • Project scope

iconCommunication and buy-in from all levels

IJA’s role:

We help you prepare for and lead the kick-off meeting, set realistic expectations, and help define scope, roles, and responsibilities.


Phase 2: Architect

During the architect phase, the team will need to determine the Workday® framework and build the foundation, or initial, tenant. In order to determine what the proper framework should be, you’ll hold SOP (standard operating procedure) sessions, or business process sessions. This is where you and your team will discuss business processes and define Workday® requirements.

IJA’s role:

We help you determine what your Workday® framework should be by leading SOP sessions, creating new and documenting current processes, and aligning the framework with your unique business needs.


Phase 3: Configure

During the configure phase, specific modules are built out within Workday® and the tenant is configured to meet your organization’s needs. For example, if you use a software for Payroll, an integration must be built to ensure that both systems communicate correctly. In customer confirmation sessions, the functionality is presented and stakeholders will give confirmation that the project is on the right track.

IJA’s role:

We identify where integrations need to be built, review technical requirements, and ensure the project stays on track in terms of requirements, time, and budget.


Phase 4: Test

During the testing phase, the team will test the software to confirm that it meets the expected requirements and is free of bugs or defects.

Testing occurs in multiple phases. Some phases include unit testing, end-to-end testing, and parallel testing.

iconUnit testing: Each unit of the software is tested. If each individual piece works, they should all work together.

iconEnd-to-end-testing: The entire process is tested from start to finish, typically an entire employee lifecycle.

iconParallel testing: Payroll testing occurs parallel to current system processing to ensure that employees are going to be paid correctly when the system goes live.

Want to learn more about testing?
Read about our Workday® testing approach.

IJA’s role:

We are with you every step of the way – helping to select the testing team, defining the process for defect tracking and resolution, and providing test scripts for the team.


Phase 5: Deploy

This is where the magic happens! After a blackout period*, your new Workday® tenant is deployed. This will typically take place on a weekend for minimal business disruption.

*What is a blackout period? Typically two weeks or more before going live, you’ll enter a blackout period, where no changes can be made to the data within your software. This ensures a seamless transition.

IJA’s role:

We support the deployment process and provide risk mitigation strategies. Once deployed, our implementation team remains with you through the hypercare period, ensuring your team has all the support it needs.


Phase 6: Support

Whether it’s making changes after new Workday® releases, adding new integrations, or making adjustments for growth or new needs, there may come a time when you need additional support post-deployment.

IJA’s role:

IJA acts in a production support role to keep your system up-to-date with the latest functionality from Workday®. We also help in keeping your day-to-day operations run smoothly.

The following steps are completed throughout multiple phases of the Workday® deployment process:

iconData migration
Configure and testing phases

Data is extracted, cleaned up, and moved from legacy systems to Workday®.

Configure and testing phases

Integrations are built to ensure that other systems you use communicate correctly with Workday®.

iconChange communication and management
Throughout entire process

Change can be overwhelming and is oftentimes met with reluctance. Communicating change as it relates to Workday® early, often, and clearly is important. A team should be in place to facilitate the change from start to finish.

Check out our change management white paper to learn more about our approach.

Throughout entire process

Similarly, the proper training builds a strong foundation, empowering employees to navigate and utilize the new system effectively once live.

How long does a Workday® implementation take?

A Workday® implementation can take anywhere from 8-18 months.

What does a successful Workday® implementation look like?

The following are the signs of a Workday® deployment done right:

  • The software works correctly and meets your needs and requirements
  • The project was completed on time and on budget
  • Employees know how to use the system and have adopted it
  • Time and money are being saved due to greater efficiencies
View some of our Workday® implementation successes

We’ve helped countless organizations through a successful Workday® implementation.

Learn more about what we can do for you.

Additional Resources