Workday adds composite reporting to Financial Management suite

Composite Reporting, with its simple interface, is likely to be a selling point as Workday pitches its financial software to various enterprises across industries.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor

Workday rolled new composite reporting with an familiar interface for its financial software along with industry specific features.

The headline feature for Workday Financial Management, Composite Reporting, headlines a series of updates on deck for Workday 23, which also covers the company's Human Capital Management and Student software.

As noted in a recent interview with Workday Chief Operating Officer Mike Stankey, large enterprises are increasingly looking at Workday Financial Management, but broad deployments in the Fortune 500 will take time.

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Composite Reporting is likely to be a selling point as Workday pitches its financial software to various enterprises across industries. Composite reporting pulls data from various sources such as actuals, budgets, stats, headcount and rolls them together across organizations. Workday's idea is to build these reports for enterprise leaders outside the finance team in real-time using its in-memory architecture.

As for the user interface, Betsy Bland, vice president of Workday's financial management products, said the design of the reports "brings the familiarity of a grid interface." The spreadsheet-ish design of Workday's Composite Reporting lessens the learning curve and makes the reports more accessible to analysts and executives. Big data company 1010Data takes a similar approach with its interface.


The reporting features, created with Workday design partners Netflix, CEC Entertainment and Life Time Fitness for the last 18 months, are interactive and easy to configure with drill down options. Finance managers select who can drill down and take action on the reports.

"We wanted to come up with a better way to pull together data and reports and burn the binder," said Bland, referring to the printed reports that get circulated around companies today.

Along with the composite reporting, Workday also added new features for the banking and insurance, software and education, government and non-profit industries.

For instance, the financial reporting for banking and insurance has to include average daily balances over various time periods. Software companies need advanced revenue recognition functionality as well as fair value calculations. Non-profits and educational institutions need to allocate overhead costs associated with grants.

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