Shopping for a Student Information System? Check Out Workday Student.
Many institutions are beginning to reevaluate the technology they use. And one system that’s quickly gaining traction is Workday Student. Workday’s student information system expands on the company’s experience with HR, payroll, and business management solutions (among others).
Because of our experience integrating with Workday (we’re currently a Certified Select Partner) we wanted to give the company a platform to share about their system. Here are some highlights from a recent Nelnet Campus Commerce webinar.
An Overview of Workday Student
The Workday Student vision
Enable student success. Discover new insights. Focus on the experience. Maximize student engagement. These are just a few of the goals Workday had in mind when they built their student information system. But they didn’t just come up with those goals on their own. Workday Student was made with higher education, not just for it. Like us, Workday spent time meeting with higher ed institutions to find out what they wanted (and needed) from a student information system.
With insights from partner institutions, they built Workday Student from the ground up. Today, it includes features like configurable online applications, academic unit hierarchy, and modular processing – a whole host of features that could be added in to create a flexible foundation for each school. But the benefits of their solution go beyond the features themselves.
Prioritizing experiences and engagement
Workday treats the features of their systems like building blocks. They can be added and removed to suit the needs of the institution. Tweaked to create a customized, flexible foundation. But in every project, they place a special emphasis on experiences.
Each member of a higher education community has different needs, so Workday’s technology needed to be built to address them all. From students to administrators, the experience needed to be consistently positive and regularly updated with new, useful features.
Also core to Workday’s mission is the idea of engagement. Interactions need to be built in to a solution rather than added on at the end. With Workday Student, you can connect with students using notifications and groups. Track their academic and application progress. Respond to requests and improve communications. Guide their education journey with academic plans and appointments – all while keeping the student experience in mind.
Whenever possible, features are self-service. Students don’t have to rely on others to control their accounts. And they can do most of their planning in the same system.
Discovering new insights
As they discussed Workday Student with partner institutions, one sentiment that regularly came up was the desire to take all of the data at their disposal and make it actionable. So Workday made it happen.
For example, when students use the system’s planner to sign up for courses, registrars can use that data to measure course demand decide whether to open up new sections of a specific course.
Another highlighted feature is Work Study, which integrates Workday’s human resources, payroll, and student systems to make sure students participating in a work study program are on track.
Building product momentum for Workday Student
Workday Student includes a number of products and features – chief among them are Admissions, Advising, Curriculum, Enrollment, Financial Records, Student Finance, and Student Records. And over the system’s lifespan, Workday has introduced hundreds of product enhancements in an effort to make sure it’s always up to date.
Workday’s plan has been to start small. Introducing Workday Student to institutions with smaller populations allowed them to prove the system’s worth as they continue to expand – but the features themselves will be accessible across the board. Smaller institutions have access to the same products that larger institutions will (though, some of the larger ones may require more automation).
Agility in action – responding to 2020
When higher education went through a number of changes in 2020, Workday took two concurrent approaches to supporting their partner institutions: Immediate response and plan/recover.
First, they worked with institutions to address grading changes, deadline adjustments, student finance refunds, and instructional deliver mode. But after immediate needs were taken care of, they wanted to go further.
To help their partners prepare for future semesters, Workday spent time putting together model enrollment scenarios, understanding the financial health of their partners, and evaluating the viability of programs they had in place.
Like Workday, we believe student, faculty, and family experiences are so important. That emphasis on putting others first is one of the many reasons we’re especially proud to be a Workday Certified Select Partner. Because by putting students first, we’ll create smarter, more positive campus experiences.
This article was based on a webinar that features Workday and their student system. To hear the full insights and Q&A, watch an on-demand version of the event.