Integrated Service Center

Workday Releases

Last updated Monday, September 20, 2021

Current Release: Workday 2021R2

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.

Just like any major software upgrade, there is necessary downtime while the changes are implemented. Employees and administrators should make plans to anticipate this downtime.

New Features and Enhancements in Workday 2021 Release 2 (2021R2)

Though, like most Workday releases, many updates for Workday 2021R2 center around back-end improvements (which end users won’t notice), a few larger-scale changes came with this round of planned updates. Some of the more noticeable updates include:

  • Larger and Centrally Located Search Field: The Workday search field is now slightly larger and found front and center of the screen (previously, it was positioned at the upper left of the screen), generally improving overall visibility and readability.
  • Enhanced Search Functionality: When using the search field, you can now select one of two new “pre-search” filter buttons to help narrow down search results and more quickly find what you’re looking for: select “People” before entering a person’s name or select “Tasks and Reports” before typing in a report number or a specific task you wish to initiate.

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

  • Report and Task Pages Now “Pop-Ups”: Reports and standalone tasks (those tasks initiated independently of a larger business process, such as Complete Form I-9, Add Additional Job, Return Worker From Leave, etc.) now open in a pop-up window rather than a separate page. This is a cosmetic change only – you can still use report prompts to filter report results the same way you always have and all task steps and routing remain the same.
  • Several Updates When Adding Additional Jobs: Unit administrators who can add or view additional jobs for employees will notice a handful of cosmetic changes to the Add Additional Job business process, including:
    • After selecting the “Job” menu item from the Worker Profile, the “All Current Jobs” tab has been renamed “Jobs” for better clarity.
    • When using the newly renamed “Jobs” tab, the Jobs table now displays not only the employee’s current job(s), but also any future-dated jobs and/or in-progress additional jobs, as well as a job’s location (e.g., Seattle Campus), providing better visibility into an employee’s employment record.
    • The “Jobs” tab now also includes a new “Add Job” button that can be used to initiate an Add Additional Job business process to make it easier to add an additional job.
    • Additionally, several non-required “Do Not Use” fields are no longer included in the Add Job process (such as “Company Insider Types,” “Workers’ Compensation Code Override,” “Exclude From Headcount,” etc.) to reduce clutter and generally improve workflow.

R wha...?

Workday releases are named for the calendar year in which they became effective + their release number:
  • "R1" for Release 1 in March
  • "R2" for Release 2 in September