How data and automation are differentiating the student experience.

Streamlined workflows and better data help faculty members at the University of Queensland (UQ) make more informed and faster decisions, giving them more time to focus on their students.

Standardized people processes now run in half the time

1 million approvals in the first year support speed and agility

35,000 online learning course enrollments

Workday deployment won an Australian HR Excellence Award

UQ is one of Australia’s leading research and teaching institutions. Its faculty is recognized for empowering students to thrive as innovative thinkers and leaders. But creating this high-quality experience takes time and requires faculty to have access to rich data.

Like most large, complex institutions, UQ had many disparate manual and paper-based processes, and different working arrangements spread across its campuses and research centers. As a result, staff members wasted time tangled up in clunky processes. “We didn’t have any type of standardization across our people processes,” says Chief HR Officer Al Jury.

Workday was a transformational implementation for the University. It really handles the complexity that sits within higher education.

Chief HR Officer

Automation frees faculty to focus on teaching.

Jury has a finger on how Workday is making UQ more efficient because the technology measures how long business processes and transactions are taking within the university. “Since going live, many of our main processes have been halved in time with automated workflows—1 million approvals in the first year—supporting speed and agility,” Jury reports. “Now faculty staff are less burdened by admin, and have time to do the research and teaching that mean the world to our students and the university. They can devote themselves to creating a fantastic student experience, adding to UQ’s reputation as a leading university.”

With all HR processes on a single dashboard, people leaders have data at their fingertips. “By offering data visualization on a dashboard, Workday makes it easy to perform tasks, such as performance appraisals, that previously were very difficult,” says Jury. “The dashboard system came into its own during the pandemic. We had immediate, up-to-date information about where people were and their flexible working arrangements.”

It’s a huge benefit now that everyone can easily access people processes in one place.

Chief HR Officer

Accurate compensation data supports pay equity.

When inclusivity is one of your values, ensuring fair and equitable pay is a high priority. “Pay equity is very important to the university,” explains Jury. “With our old systems, many of our managers couldn’t access compensation data or even just regular workforce data about their people in the way they can now. 

“Real-time, accurate data about your people and their skills is critical to making appropriate business decisions about issues such as compensation, which can affect loyalty and retention. That immediate visibility of salary parity results in better compensation decisions,” Jury says.

The Workday product has really been proven to be fit for purpose in higher education.

Chief HR Officer

Modern tools boost the Gen-Z employee experience.

Jury says that having a world’s best-practices system is important to the university’s postgraduate students, who are also employees. “We engage with them in the same way as our broader university staff, with a modern platform that helps them easily update their details and lets them do all their onboarding learning online—at their convenience. We’ve had 35,000 people take up online learning through Workday. 

“The fact that we’ve invested in a modern system tells them that we are leveraging technology and are committed to developing the workforce of the future,” Jury concludes.

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