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UW Finance Transformation

UWFT 2022 Milestones: Accelerating toward go-live

December 14, 2022

Looking back, 2022 started out as the year that UW Finance Transformation (UWFT) was dedicated to charging full-steam ahead, accomplishing our goals while looking forward to go-live in July 2023. While I like that steam engine analogy, I can’t help but feel like this year has moved more like a high-speed train, with each month passing by in the blink of an eye. But despite its swiftness, it’s important that we pause to reflect on and celebrate our accomplishments and milestones in 2022. 

We began the year on the tail end of Configure & Prototype (C&P), the fourth stage within UWFT’s Implementation Phase. C&P focused on iteratively building, refining and validating the new financial and supply chain processes and systems. By the time we wrapped up C&P in March, we had successfully advanced Workday® and side system readiness, mapped business processes across nine end-to-end process areas, expanded learning opportunities to help prepare our stakeholders for change, introduced new tools and resources, and so much more. The successful completion of C&P helped pave the way for the next stage of the program — Test.

UWFT’s Test stage began in April with end-to-end (E2E) testing and the goal of thoroughly testing finance and supply chain business processes in the future-state Workday® Financials system, as well as in the many non-Workday systems needed to perform our finance and supply chain work. E2E testing has gone through three cycles, with the third and final cycle ending this month. During this time, our testers have been busy ironing out bugs and implementing fixes to ensure everything works as smoothly as possible at go-live. While E2E testing is nearly complete, Test stage will continue through March 2023, as additional types of testing, such as payroll parallel testing, user acceptance testing and supplemental integration and remediation testing (SIRT), are currently in process or scheduled for completion.

Throughout this year, we’ve also worked to define our new operating model, which tells us where and how work gets done. It includes a “levels of shared” approach to finance processes and activities, establishing four levels of shared where work is done: enterprise-wide, organization-wide, shared environment (SE) and unit level. In the future state, more finance, procurement and supply chain work will occur within an SE — where processes are performed by a pooled set of resources on behalf of one or more local units — or higher. 

In August, we rolled out Workday® Adaptive Planning Release 1 (R1) to UW Academy (UWA). This planning and forecasting tool is meant to improve, prepare and maintain UW’s future-state financial budgets. Adaptive R1 is focused on FY24 planning. Office of Planning and Budgeting (OPB) users and administrators of major areas were the first wave to receive training and subsequently — with the support of Unit Readiness Leads and UWFT change managers — are cascading training to a second wave of UWA unit budget planners. To date, approximately 400 Adaptive R1 users have received training. Adaptive R2, which focuses on FY24 managing and FY25 planning, will launch shortly after go-live for the entire enterprise. 

Running parallel to all these accomplishments, we’ve invested significant time and effort into preparing everyone across the University who will be impacted by this historic transformation. Our Organizational Change Management (OCM) team has conducted various types of knowledge sharing and engagement events. Additionally, our Technical Change Management (TCM) team has implemented enhancements to their engagement plan to better support units on their remediation efforts; this included defining a tier structure to prioritize systems, workshops, office hours and launching a monthly newsletter for system remediation support, among other things.

We achieved many more accomplishments this year, some of which are highlighted below with others featured in the UWFT 2022 Annual Report.

What a list! Yet, these are just a few select highlights from 2022. Our teams have accomplished so much more this year, and they certainly didn’t do it alone. Collaboration is key in everything we do, and for that, I want to thank all of you — particularly our stakeholders and change champions from all the units, schools and colleges across the enterprise — who have worked alongside our program members to help drive collective success. As we get closer to go-live, I ask for your continued support, effort and especially patience as we work together to deliver one of the biggest changes in this great University’s history. Together, we’re investing in its future.

Enjoy your holidays — especially this opportunity to spend time with family and friends. Also, get some rest. In 2023, that high-speed train is going to transform into a rocket ship as we accelerate on the journey toward our future state. Here’s to a successful 2023!

*Cited data as of 12/12/22

Editor’s note: If you have questions or comments about the UWFT program, send an email to uwftask@uw.edu.

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