Workday is a piece of work

Students and faculty receive Hamline’s new payment system with gripes and groans.

Hanna Bubser, Senior Columnist

This past summer, I worked at my on-campus job. That means I was present for the transition from Piperline payments to the Workday system. At the time, the change was rather quiet. Since there weren’t as many students on campus, there were fewer employees for work study supervisors to keep track of.

However, there were still plenty of bumps. My job at admission did a great job of offering us instructions before we started using Workday. That way, we knew what to expect. Unfortunately, practice is different than actual application. When it came time to start using Workday, there were still some kinks to be worked out.

It was a bit tricky to stay on top of for a while; I would forget to clock out here and there, or I’d slip up and not submit a timesheet. I credited this to the system simply being new, but once summer came to an end and students filed back on campus, I realized that the learning curve was starting all over again.

This is because the students who had been away for the summer were coming back to campus to find an entirely new way to track their hours. Perhaps the biggest change was the structure of the system.

With Piperline, students were able to add their hours after the fact. This means that they could enter in the correct number of hours they were at work after their shift was over. There was room for error because each student had to remember the exact time they got to work and left, but it was also convenient for students if they preferred to fill out their entire timecard at once before submitting it.

Workday operates on a “live” basis. This means you are in charge of remembering to “clock in” when you get to work and of “clock out” as well. I recognize that we’re all adults and keeping track of small things like this is our responsibility. But I know for a fact from fellow student workers that it isn’t too difficult to forget to log in and clock in or out. Returning students aren’t as comfortable with it as they were with Piperline. It’s going to be an adjustment.

Another issue with Workday is actually something that we’ve dealt with head-on here at The Oracle. Workday requires a faculty or staff member to be in charge of the “hiring” process. This seems like a no-brainer, but it isn’t as simple as it seems. For on-campus jobs, this makes sense. The individual who hired you is in charge of listing you as an employee on the Workday website, which ensures that you will get paid. All is well.

When it comes to student organizations like The Oracle, however, it makes things tedious. As students, we have operated the hiring and payment processes of our organization in the past. With Workday, our faculty adviser is put in a position that they haven’t been in before, leaving them with the responsibility of making sure everyone is hired and getting paid.

In a smaller setting, this might be fine. For larger student organizations, it mixes things up. It puts our advisor in a role that has never technically been theirs before. In short, it can be frustrating. On the flip side, I’ve already mentioned that Workday is still relatively new. This means that there is still time to settle in. It’s not as if these issues are being ignored; they’re being discussed by the Hamline community every day. With conversation, much can be achieved. With Workday, we can hope that this is no different, for the sake of our paychecks.