Integrated Service Center

Workday Releases

Last updated Saturday, March 13, 2021

Current Release: Workday 2021R1

Twice a year, in September and March, Workday – UW’s integrated, cloud-based human resource and payroll operations system – releases major feature upgrades designed to increase functionality and enhance the user experience. On this page, learn about what changes you can expect; what steps, if any, you might need to take to prepare for the new upgrade; and what dates Workday will be unavailable during this routine maintenance.

Workday releases are named for the calendar year in which they became effective + their release number (i.e., R1 for Release 1 in March or R2 for Release 2 in September).

Workday Unavailable During Release Update
Just like any major software upgrade, there is necessary downtime while the changes are implemented. Workday will be unavailable for use the weekend of the release from 11:00 pm on March 12 through 5:00 pm on March 14. Employees and administrators should make plans to anticipate this downtime.

New Features and Enhancements in Workday 2021 Release 1 (2021R1)

Like its predecessors, Workday’s spring release, 2021R1, centers around back-end improvements (which end users won’t notice), a few exciting changes came in this round of planned updates.

Some of the more noticeable updates include:

  • New Look for “Enter Time” Calendar: Employees who enter time in Workday will see several changes to their “Enter Time” calendar, including a more prominent summary of their time balances and more appropriately named buttons. Select the graphic below for details.

  • New “Table View” Option for Workday Reports and Tables: Improving the accessibility and usability of Workday reports and tables, especially for those who use assistive technologies, employees can now turn on “Table View,” which spreads report and table results over several easier-to-navigate pages rather than on one result-heavy (scroll-intensive) screen; users can also expand or collapse rows to better control how information is displayed in reports and tables.

And department administrators might be interested in a few improvements in the HCM space, including:

  • New BP “Progress Pop-ups”: Now when you submit a step during a business process, instead of being directed to a static “Up Next,” “View Details,” “Successfully Completed,” or other landing page that appears during business sub-processes, Workday displays a pop-up window that both confirms the action taken was completed and provides a link to open the next step/sub-process (when applicable). Please note: this is a cosmetic change only and all steps and routing for business processes remain the same.
  • Improved Visibility of Period Activity Pay Comments: Period Activity Pay comments (those comments added in the Activity column during the Manage Period Activity Pay Assignments process) are now displayed in two new locations when reviewing the Compensation tab details accessed from the Worker’s Profile page: on the Current Activity Pay tab and on the Historical Period Activity Assignments tab. Admins can continue to see PAP comments via Worker History.