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Workday removes barriers to in-house collaboration

June 2014 | By Sue Weekes
Amy Wilson
Amy Wilson


US enterprise software developer Workday has launched an end-to-end recruiting application that aims to increase collaboration between in-house recruiting teams and managers, and provide greater visibility into an organisation’s talent pipeline. 

Amy Wilson, vice president of human capital management at Workday, told Recruiter its research had revealed that recruiting teams and managers did aspire to be more far more collaborative, but that some existing applicant-tracking systems (ATS) or other recruitment technology were hindering rather than helping organisations. 

“Some of the ‘ahas’ for us were around where the recruitment process starts and ends,” said Wilson. “There’s a notion that managers aren’t involved in the process until the CVs come in, but it’s much earlier than that. Every manager was social and collaborative, and every manager was sourcing and not necessarily relying on the recruiter. So if everyone in the organisation is recruiting, everyone needs a tool to recruit better.”

Workday Recruiting is not a stand-alone product — it is integrated with the company’s HR and finance applications as part of the Workday 22 upgrade. So far, around 70 of its customers have signed up for the recruiting tool, including global companies with UK offices. Early adopters have been providing feedback on the product, including US consumer credit reporting agency Equifax and Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts. Wilson says that the first UK recruiting team to go live with the product will be its own.

Workday Recruiting includes a mobile interface that allows recruiting teams and hiring managers to collaborate and communicate regardless of location, and has social sourcing and recruitment analytics tools built in. Initially, Workday was going to build a tool that sat side-by-side with its existing applications. But its research led it to rethink “the whole DNA” of Workday, said Wilson. 

“For example, we wanted to look at: what succession looked like now we have external candidates in the mix; what workforce planning looks like now we can see the whole pipeline; what compensation looks like now we are providing offers to pre-hires; and what core HR and job requisition look like now we can provide more information and job posting,” she said. “Now it’s about the whole talent pipeline, and everyone can be involved.”

Another key issue identified by Workday was integration with other systems such as HR. Although in theory integrating systems is much easier than previously, Wilson reports that for some organisations, feeding data from an ATS into an HR system was a “full-time job”. 

“And that is just to get data in. If they want to get the data out and report on it across the talent pipeline it is impossible,” she said, adding that this was preventing these organisations combining their external recruitment and internal mobility strategies. “Some organisations have high goals around internal fulfilment rates, but we found there were borders between the two areas hindering people.”

Workday is still building its brand in the UK, and for the recruitment industry the tool marks the arrival of a significant cloud-based enterprise software player. While Workday Recruiting cannot be bought separately, it is geared to modern sourcing and mobile and social recruiting practices. For those evaluating their in-house systems, the tool is likely to attract attention to Workday’s suite of products. 

Launched in 2005 by Dave Duffield, who founded PeopleSoft, and Aneel Bhusri, who held several leadership positions at the company including senior vice president of product strategy, its strategy is to closely involve customers with product development. This approach includes holding Workday Brainstorm sessions, where customers get the chance to vote on new capabilities.

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