In Their Words: Workday Customers Share How They’ve Managed Change

The ancient philosopher Epictetus has been attributed to the wisdom that, “It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.” The same goes for the business world. When faced with an unpredictable situation that requires rethinking strategy, or presented with an opportunity to drive growth, business leaders must be ready to embrace change and use it to make their organizations even better.

In recent surveys, CEOs said continuous innovation and a willingness to change are necessary to thrive. If businesses do not disrupt themselves, it’s a pretty sure bet something else will. These changes also need to happen simultaneously across multiple parts of the business, requiring both speed and organizational agility.

Workday customers deal with change, including shifting competitive landscapes, new business models, and mergers and acquisitions. A key reason they choose Workday Financial Management and Workday Human Capital Management is because these applications were designed to provide the agility and business insights to support and even drive change.

Read on to learn how some of our customers have managed change with the support of Workday.

Cardinal Health plans to continue to grow and innovate, and mergers and acquisitions are an important part of that strategy.

CardinalHealth_logo_600x315 Cardinal Health helps its customers—including pharmacies, hospitals, and doctor’s offices—reduce the costs and complexities of healthcare with logistics services, medical products, and more. The company has 36,000 employees worldwide.

Cardinal Health plans to continue to grow and innovate, and mergers and acquisitions are an important part of that strategy. Cardinal looked to Workday to facilitate a smooth transition for new employees and to deliver tangible dollar and time savings back to the business.

“Prior to Workday, setting up an acquisition as a legal entity could take as much as six months,” said Kelly George, director, HRIS, M&A and governance at Cardinal Health. “Today, we are able to commit to the business that, on the day the acquisition closes, all acquired employees will be in Workday. Not only does that create a seamless and positive experience for the acquired employees, but it provides our executive team with highly valued insight into headcount reporting, attrition, and retention trends for the acquired business that just weren’t possible prior to Workday.”

Leadership sought greater visibility into Abbott’s global workforce to identify gaps and align the right skill sets with roles to fill the talent pipeline.

Abbott_logo_600x315Abbott Labs, a globally diversified healthcare company, began its transformation in 2013, when it spun off its proprietary pharmaceutical arm and separated into two Fortune 200 companies.  With over half of its employees and business outside of the U.S., and 75% of growth occurring in emerging markets, the company realized it needed to rebuild its talent pipeline and bench for succession. Leadership sought greater visibility into Abbott’s global workforce to identify gaps and align the right skill sets with roles to fill the talent pipeline. The business also required technology that was flexible enough to manage organizational change and integrate new businesses acquired as a result of M&A activity.

“We knew we had a good tool with Workday, as our employees and leaders immediately saw value,” says Patrick Lalor, divisional vice president of global HR service centers & HR IT solutions. “We are no longer constrained by the availability of data or who gets access to it. Now we can just manage the business the way we want and have the tools and visibility into where problems lie. With Workday, our employees and business leaders are having dialogues they’ve never had the opportunity to have before.”

With Workday, Vassar gains a flexible system and insights into its real-time finance and human resources data.

VassarCollege_logo_600x315Vassar College recognized the growing concern around student debt and the financial burden of attending a top quality university. To address this, Vassar shifted its business model in recent years with the goal of providing an education to students who have limited ability to pay. As a result, 60 percent of Vassar’s student body receives substantial financial aid, with Vassar providing $70 million a year in aid to students.

To make this possible, Vassar had to rethink its revenue operations, and find a way to refocus its finances on the academic program and student financial aid. With Workday, Vassar gains a flexible system and insights into its real-time finance and human resources data, to help meet its objectives for providing a more affordable, high quality education.

“If we were going to make this a sustainable program we had to become very much like many businesses, even though corporate or business is a dirty word in higher ed,” says Bob Walton, vice president of finance and administration at Vassar College. “That’s where Workday came in. We began to think about how we could become more efficient, how we could modernize, and how we could begin to do things differently by putting a lot more of the control of our services and the experiences on campus into the hands of the students and faculty directly.”