Before deploying Workday in 2021, Formula 1’s HR function was using a mix of disparate legacy systems and manual processes. Alastair Goss, HR Systems Lead at Formula 1, said: “We could see there was efficiency to be gained from implementing a system that would connect all our sources of people data and do everything we needed, all in one place.”
As an organisation of a relatively small size, outweighed by a worldwide operational footprint and very high public profile, Formula 1 found their operational challenges were intensified.
Reaching new levels of agility and efficiency.
“The way we work isn’t straightforward,” Alastair continues. “We use contractors throughout the season to carry out some core work functions, such as broadcasting. In addition, we’re a publicly listed organisation which brings compliance complications.”
Because of this, Formula 1 wanted a system that would deliver a new level of agility and efficiency. Following a market review, Workday was selected as offering everything the team was looking for. And, as Alastair comments, “The more time goes by, the more the improvements we’re experiencing confirm we made the right decision.”
We could see there was efficiency to be gained from a system that would connect all our sources of people data and do everything we needed, all in one place.
Alastair Goss, HR Systems Lead, Formula 1
Speeding ahead with an improved employee experience.
Phase one went live in September 2022 with Workday Human Capital Management, Workday Payroll, Workday Absence and Workday Recruiting. And, as Alastair Goss explains, “Phase two followed in January 2023, with Workday Time Tracking, Workday Talent and Workday Learning.
With the brilliant support of our implementation partner, CloudRock, we quickly began to gain visibility and connectivity across all our data sources. Before Workday, we’d held all our data separately – performance data, absence data, core data, payroll data, recruitment data and more. By bringing them all together, we no longer needed to take data from one system and put it in another. It was just there.”
This had a huge impact throughout the business, not just at head office. Alastair continues, “Most of our employees are UK based but travel all over the world. So it’s been fantastic for them to have an app that enables them to provide and access data from anywhere on the planet.
“It’s also helping the working experience of our people. For example, if they’re away for a Grand Prix weekend, it’s really easy now for them to book time off from their phones on the journey home. That’s really positive for them.”
Early days – but great benefits, right off the starting grid.
Better connectivity enabled by Workday is also empowering Formula 1’s HR function, in Alastair Goss’ words, “by enabling us to do a better job of servicing our finance team on headcount reporting and reforecasting work we do with them.”
“Some aspects of this are simple on the surface but still significant. For example, with upcoming new starters, it’s now very straightforward, with everything on the same system, to say when a new joiner will be coming on board, when we’ll start paying them and what that means for our budget.”
Alastair expects many more significant developments in the months and years ahead. As he says, “I feel we’ve only scratched the surface with Workday reporting capabilities, but we’re already seeing improvements in the quality of data we can provide to important areas of the business.
“It’s certainly an area we’re set to grow, develop and build on, and it’s already proving hugely beneficial.”
CloudRock, our implementation partner, were utterly invaluable – they bent over backwards to make sure we delivered on what we set out to do.
Alastair Goss, HR Systems Lead, Formula 1
Integrating Workday into every working environment.
Looking ahead, Alastair Goss is excited by the potential Workday offers for integration with other systems. One example that’s already up and running is also related to improving employee experience.
As he explains, “Thanks to Workday, we’ve already been able to integrate LinkedIn Learning into our wider solution, putting continuous professional development opportunities literally at our people’s fingertips. That’s a tremendous benefit for them.”
He’s also looking forward to a new project, underway this year, that will bring Workday into the everyday working environment for all at the organisation.
“This will see integration with Microsoft Teams,” Alastair continues. “Given the speed we often need to move as an organisation, it’ll be a real win for us in areas like booking leave or performance reviews. It’s yet another source of added agility and efficiency.”
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