Workday Adds Smart Analytics, Mobility to Its App Suite

New-gen capabilities help companies hire the right people, manage workforces and keep financials sharp by providing insights derived through facts.


Workday, which specializes in enterprise cloud applications for finance and human resources departments, has smartened its cloudwares by adding mobility, advanced data science and machine learning algorithms into the mix.

How do those new-gen capabilities help companies hire the right people, manage workforces and keep the financials sharp? By providing insights derived through facts, finding fact-based trends and offering predictions, and recommending a scientific-based course of action.

Workday's new mobile capability for its core application went live Nov. 4 for iPhone and iPad users at the company's Workday Rising conference. The new analytics application suite, called Workday Insight Applications, will become available for all users in 2015 with the launch of Workday 24.

To get this new set of smart apps off the ground and into the cloud, the Pleasanton, Calif.-based company introduced SYMAN, a home-built intelligence kernel that uses a predictive engine, a recommendation engine, matching algorithms and search relevancy throughout the Workday core app. As a result, users are now seeing smarter, analytics-based features and functionality across the entire Workday platform.

Workday Insight Applications brings improved data visualization and the ability to pull in external data sources using Workday Big Data Analytics, Workday Vice President of Technology Products Dan Beck told eWEEK.

Key new features in Insight Applications include:

--Smart recommendations to address specific business scenarios: Workday Insight Applications will take the historical data in Workday, combine it with preconfigured sources of non-Workday data, and then will apply data science and machine learning algorithms in order to produce predictive insights and recommendations for specific business scenarios. With these recommendations, customers can expect to more accurately address a range of business questions and challenges such as selecting an internal career path for a top performer at risk of leaving or proactively identifying travel and entertainment expense policy abuse.

--One complete system: Insight Applications will be completely unified with Workday Financial Management and Human Capital Management, enabling decision-makers to take action on recommendations and see the impact of their decision--all in one complete system that does not require separate data warehousing, data cleansing or business intelligence tools.

--Adaptive applications that get smarter over time: The new app also will learn from new actions taken and new data introduced for each business scenario. As a result, the relevancy and accuracy of predictions and recommendations delivered over time will improve to account for new patterns and behaviors in the context of each user, the individual's role the organization, and the decision he or she is making.

--SYMAN, an intelligent information engine: SYMAN takes advantage of the latest methodologies in data science and machine learning algorithms to automatically map, classify and normalize similar definitions across multiple sources and structures of data.

--Industry Trees: These are preconfigured job classification taxonomies. Through SYMAN, Workday offers industry trees, which are taxonomies organizing hundreds of job positions and job categories for more than 20 industries representative of its customer base, including consumer packaged goods, education, financial services, government, health care and software and Internet services.

--Universal Data (preconfigured public content): Workday Insight Applications will also provide access to a range of public data sets that will be preconfigured for customers to apply to business scenarios.

Workday is scheduled to make select Workday Insight Applications generally available to customers in calendar year 2015. For more information, go here.

Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor-in-Chief of eWEEK and responsible for all the publication's coverage. In his 13 years and more than 4,000 articles at eWEEK, he has distinguished himself in reporting...