WILs get sneak peak of Workday
CASTLE ROCK – On Wednesday a group of employees, representing just about every school and department gathered together for a sneak peek of the new tool that will revolutionize the way we do business here in the Douglas County School District.
The 99 employees were selected by their school and department leaders to be Workday Implementation Leads (WILs). They will help provide communication, training and support to staff in their buildings during the RPM Workday implementation.
Workday is a human resources, benefits and payroll application that will modernize many of the business processes for the District through automation, streamlining and standardization.
While it is a big project, the WILs left the training excited about what is ahead.
“I was nervous, but now I’m really excited,” said Danielle Milone, the principal’s secretary at Redstone Elementary.
Milone and her counterpart at Cougar Run Elementary, Andrea McNamara, said they were impressed by the application’s sleek design.
“I think the tool will be pretty easy to use,” Milone said. “I think it will be really good.”
“This is the iPhone of school business,” McNamara added. “It is simple. It is easy. It is moving us forward into 21st Century Education.”
During the kick-off, the WILs had an opportunity to hear how Workday will benefit DCSD, focusing on what will change and what will stay the same.
Currently, school and department staff are forced to use paper-driven, labor-intensive processes when it comes to new hires, change of statuses and separations, as well as many of the other business processes they do on a daily basis.
“It is hard to make sure that all the pieces get to all the departments,” McNamara said. “I think this will bring that all together in one place, to make sure that everyone gets what they need.”
“I believe the people in the schools will be pleasantly surprised by the upgrade,” added Valerie Locke, the Information Technology specialist that is leading the Workday training efforts. “It will be much simpler for them to have all of their resources in one place.”
One of the many benefits of the new system is that it will allow DCSD to move to a bi-weekly paycheck. The WILs were extremely excited about this improvement, because of the impact they see specifically with new hires.
“When processes don’t take place in a timely manner, for instance Human Resources has the paper work, but payroll doesn’t, that can delay someone’s paycheck. That is someone’s livelihood and their rent and their grocery money. It puts us in a very bad spot,” McNamara said.
Executives pledge training, support
Chief Financial Officer Bonnie Betts, Chief Human Resources Officer Brian Cesare, and Chief Technology Officer Gautam Sethi introduced the project.
“One of the big messages was that there is going to be a lot of support for the WILs. The support is not just coming from the trainers. It is coming from the top down,” explained Locke. “Brian, Bonnie and Gautam gave them a very strong message that we are here to support you, which I very much appreciated and I have never seen before in an implementation.”
Locke and her team will be working to build resource for the WILs, includingvideos that are DCSD specific. Right now WILs have access to general or "generic" videos and documents so they can learn about the system over the next six months.
“Whatever their learning style is, we’re going to make sure that information is there for them,” Locke said.
District-wide training begins in March 2015
In March, the WILs will then begin teaching the staff at their schools and departments.
Learning from previous implementations, the goal of the WILs during DCSD’s Workday rollout will be to set a foundation of training, so that every employee is confident with the tool on April 1.
“[We will] take it slow, guide them, hold their hand, and be patient,” promised Milone.
“I’m excited. I can’t wait,” Milone added.
The WILs will attend monthly meetings to hear project updates, learn about the new functionality, and help build a training strategy to meet the needs of their school or location.
All employees can expect further information about the RPM Workday project in coming weeks via their WILs.
Revving Up Your Workday
The current software that DCSD uses to manage human resources and payroll operations (Oracle) has become obsolete and requires replacement. As a result, DCSD is implementing a new system called Workday to manage these processes. Workday will enable DCSD to improve the way it administers and delivers information to faculty and staff. This system is designed to be Responsive. Productive. Measurable. This is why we have coined the implementation of the system “RPM.”
DCSD is committed to making sure that all employees are prepared to use the new system to “Rev up their Workday” when it goes live on April 1, 2015.
Each site has designated Workday Implementation Leads (WILs) who will serve as the contact person for any questions or concerns that may arise during the transition period.