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  • Kerry - HCM, Comp, Security, Reporting & More

Workday® Testing 2020R1- Releases and Service Notes

As a SaaS system with bi-annual releases, Workday® deserves careful attention to testing releases. Each release is awaited with bated breath - but often this enthusiasm is isolated to the latest and greatest features. Some release features are automatic, others require configuration. And some features are functionally inconsequential (Button Colors) while others have a “WOW” factor (Autocomplete Staffing Processes).

And the release features may have a big impact - even if the new optional bells and whistles are not adopted. Clients employ various testing methodology to accommodate releases. Methods vary from simple to complex, and some are specifically designed and integrated for Workday®. A How to Use What's New Resources® is helpful in testing design. Another helpful resource is Testing the Feature Release®.

Is there a best approach to ensure new release features are not only accounted for, but also tested thoroughly? The What's New Report® is a great tool start with, and it has been updated for the 2020 R1 release with new filters. The report can be copied and customized.

Keep in mind features scheduled for releases may be delayed from the published date. Updates to release features are in Community - Release section (Feature Delays for Workday 2020 Release 1®) There are also posts on features questions/answers often useful for testing.

What are the consequences if new functionalities are not fully tested? How are functional administrators and end-users being prepared? How are system administrators or configurators preparing? What new features will impact payroll, security, integrations? If you’re not asking such questions, be prepared to be surprised.

Aside from the 2x/yr. releases are the weekly updates. Once a week are Service Update Notes®.

These generally are bug fixes – discovered by customers or within Workday®. If you're swamped with day-to-day issues, these updates may be lesser priorities. And they are valuable and provide a solution for a current issue in your system. It’s a way-cool report that’s sortable, and easy to use.

I've often advocated for a central repository for system releases and in general, change management - Github®, Jira®, etc. with reporting capabilities.

It's great Workday® records almost every change to the system - who did what when (Audit Trails in Workday®). Intent or rationale it does not capture. I know, documentation is not sexy, and it’s not a lot of fun. But if it’s done correctly, it is invaluable in mitigating current problems, testing releases, and preparing for the future.

Having a central/shared source to store repeatable scripts/test cases makes testing easier for Workday® releases. This would include common test cases, repeatable test scripts, results, and relationships to releases, etc. How-To documentation for these resources is also a good idea.

A helpful tool for testing is the project plan in the Feature Release Guidebook® on under “Plan for the Feature Release”. Use this plan to fit an organization’s needs. A good project plan might include items in these categories:

  • Pre-product release activities

  • Communication and change management activities

  • Testing

  • Post-product release activities

The Feature Release Checklist® is also useful. This includes recommended reports and audits to run before, during, and after the delivery of a new feature release.

Contact us for more information or support for release management and testing insights:


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