October 09, 2018
In the New with Workday
By: Colin Anderson

Every year I like to take time around Workday Rising to reflect on the past year and what we’re focused on for the next. 2018 has been focused on innovation across our business—simply put—how we deliver better outcomes together with our clients and how we can do it faster and more cost effective. Continuing into next year, innovation is going to be an even stronger focus, and I’m excited to share our thinking around this.

Together with some of my colleagues, I’m happy to share that we’re launching a blog series to highlight many of these areas: Workday Financial Management, Workday Prism Analytics, Workday Planning, Workday Learning, and much more. But given all the market excitement around the Workday Cloud Platform, it feels like the best place to start.

Over the last year, we’ve been very busy and productive in pushing the boundaries of possibility with the Workday Cloud Platform. "Transformative" may be an over-used word, but it applies here because, we’ve focused on our clients’ business transformation and their ways of working using the Workday Cloud Platform as an accelerator. We too, as Accenture DayNine, are using Workday and the Workday Cloud Platform for our own internal operations.

In the past 12 months our teams have focused on three areas:

  1. People Development: 15+ global consultants within our practice have hands-on experience creating new tools, processes, and development methods for the Workday Cloud Platform

  2. App Research and Delivery: In-house work and client projects

  3. Tools and Processes: Creating templates and accelerators as we continue our research and delivery work (e.g. source code control, libraries of lessons learned)

Accenture’s Four Workday Pillars
Last year, we broke our Workday efforts into four segments:

  1. Meeting the needs of specific industries

  2. Connecting the geographic landscape

  3. Making room for more innovation

  4. Unlocking the power of the ecosystem

While those four pillars were relevant a year ago, our work during that time has shown that we’re on the right track toward further enhancing the Workday Cloud Platform and its Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) possibilities. I’d like to share how much we’ve accomplished within those four pillars.

Meeting the Needs of Industry Specialization
This was natural for us because Accenture’s business model is built on industry-aligned strategy management and consulting. We view the Workday Cloud Platform as an accelerator to Workday’s rapid product development and find ourselves in a unique position to extend the platform to industry segments.

@Workday Cloud Platform is an accelerator to Workday’s rapid product development & @Accenture is uniquely positioned to extend it into industry segments.


Consulting and business advisory services are a prime example. Within our Workday practice, we are using Workday to manage our project portfolio and resource management. Thanks to the Workday Cloud Platform, we can expand our use of Workday to include detailed project health by workstream, including health plans at the workstream level as needed. The development and roll-out of these "health indicators" help us proactively manage our project portfolio and ultimately drive better delivery for our clients.

It’s important to note that while we have seen this success within Accenture DayNine, these capabilities can translate to other companies in and beyond professional services. We are working closely with our industry and safety experts to develop an application that encourages a culture of safety. We created a prototype application that allows employees to submit safety observations—both positive and negative. This complements Workday’s delivered safety incident reporting by giving workers a way to mitigate and avoid incidents.

Connecting the Geography Landscape
Clearly, technology must transcend geography. And just as clearly, Workday is very strong in localization. To enhance its strengths, we are in the beginning stages of re-platforming many of the Workday Financial Management localization accelerators we have built over the years to become more robust in Workday’s native environment. We look forward to sharing more about this in our coming blog about Workday Financial Management.

Making Room for More Innovation
Our work in the past was focused on "Applying Innovation Now" by combining Accenture’s Innovation Architecture with Workday.

We’ve worked with some of our most progressive clients to extend Workday to their most important talent imperatives. For example, one of our clients recently embraced working from home as an option for its employees. To ensure that employees deliver the same customer service as those who are office-based, they developed a process, enabled with the Workday Cloud Platform, that created:

  • A one-stop-shop for employees to request the ability to work from home
  • Business assurance on the requesting employee’s qualification
  • HR accountability on payroll and tax implications
  • Proper employee infrastructure from IT (from high-speed-internet to monitors, etc.)

We are working with a multi-national company that is rolling out an entirely new paradigm for how they view employee and team contribution, augmenting traditional “anytime feedback” with questions such as, “Does the employee demonstrate and practice our core values?” and “Does the employee align and work to deliver our business goals?” With the Workday Cloud Platform, we’ve been able to build this "performance feedback" capability, allowing our client’s people to quickly and easily submit feedback.

We’re also using the Workday Cloud Platform to help companies be more efficient and effective with campus hiring and job fairs. With a campus hiring and job fare app we developed, candidates can scan a QR code and apply for a job on the fly. The app also tracks all the people recruiting teams met with at a campus event and helps determine who should progress and who should be politely thanked for their time.

Unlocking the Power of the Ecosystem
The Accenture Technology Vision 2018 discusses making business "frictionless" and we believe the Workday Cloud Platform is the game-changing tool to help accomplish this.

@Workday Cloud Platform is the game-changing tool to help accomplish frictionless business. #techvision


For example, we believe that entering employee feedback should be seamless, and so to make this experience more natural, we built a Workday integration with Slack (which we’ll be extending to teams).

We believe in making it easier to get the basics done. Say an employee wants to find out about family leave. How do they request it? How long does it last? What forms do they need to fill out? What other departments do they need to contact? We have begun experimenting with bots and machine learning, surfaced via multiple workspaces, to pull information from knowledge bases like Workday, to surface and deliver answers to the employee as easily as possible.

Where We Go from Here
What we’ve already been able to accomplish with clients and within our own practice is proof that the Workday Cloud Platform is transformative. We are excited and looking forward to co-creating the future with many more clients to come, we know it will only get better from here. We’re eager to learn your feedback, let us know what you’d like to accomplish and see with the Workday Cloud Platform. Let’s go further together!

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