EDITORIAL: Workday improves campus, yet has issues
Over the summer, the University transitioned to Workday, a portal that functions as a one-stop shop for students and other campus employees to log work hours, maintain a record of their financial transactions, view paychecks and have a seamless space for working multiple jobs. It can also be useful when requesting an absence, accessing work benefits and finding a job on campus. This board commends the University for its use of Workday and its attempt to provide employees and community members with a safe, reliable and easy-to-use interface for all things concerning on-campus jobs. However, Workday is plagued with numerous quality-of-life issues that make its use difficult and cumbersome to adjust to, especially for students who do not necessarily have time to devote to learning the nuances of the program.
Previously, a student employee had to fill out a physical timesheet, have it signed and dropped off at a different location, sometimes far away from the student’s workplace, creating problems for those with tight schedules. With Workday, employees can submit their time and have it approved online. If the employer is comfortable with it, one can also log the week’s work hours of the week after Friday and log future hours, which is a convenient feature to ensure a well-documented and compensated work week. Additionally, Workday has a responsive help email — firstname.lastname@example.org — which can be a resource for students. The University Information and Technology Services office is helpful in answering questions about the software. In this regard, Workday effectively simplifies the way work on campus is recognized and compensated.
However, students have found problems with searching through the massive number of things Workday claims to manage. For instance, one has to search for very specific phrases to find certain tasks, such as searching “payment elections” to set up or make changes to direct deposit. This is inconvenient to anyone wishing to simply deposit and save their hard-earned money.
On the one hand, Workday is an efficient piece of software in that it standardizes how employees log hours for their payroll. Conversely, it does not prominently display one’s hourly wage for a given job, only on the payslips for each week. In addition, payslips and tax documents from the pre-Workday era are not available — or at least, none of the editors have found them after extensively searching and browsing the Workday help site. This is ironic, considering it is an application centered around finding the most important documents surrounding one’s job. On an application that consolidates nearly every aspect of one’s employment on campus, exclusions such as those described above are problematic. Ways to confront the lack of access to vital information concerning one’s wages and taxes include hosting more training sessions for employees required to use the software and in-app tutorials for navigating access to important documents and logging hours.