One Washington, led by the Office of Financial Management, is an enterprise-wide transformation program focused on replacing 1960s-era technology with a cloud-based solution for finance, procurement, budget, HR, and payroll processes. Phase 1a of the program includes replacement of the Agency Financial Reporting System (AFRS) with a new, cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. A complete ERP system combines business functions (finance, procurement, budget, HR, and payroll) across an organization’s main resources – its people, money, information and assets – and provides decision makers with real-time enterprise information.

The program has selected Workday as it’s ERP vendor. Workday is a proven system used by nearly half of all Fortune 500 companies and many public sector organizations to integrate core business functions. The state selected Workday after a robust due diligence process. This process included evaluating other ERP systems, discussions with client references, and multiple rounds of system demonstrations. Workday will provide many important benefits to the state including: 

  • Increased cost understanding – by moving to a standardized chart of accounts, state leaders can track costs for projects and initiatives supported by multiple agencies such as wildfires or the COVID-19 response. 

  • World-class security – applications designed specifically for the cloud, such as Workday, have proven to meet the requirements of organizations in the most heavily regulated and risk-adverse industries worldwide. The cloud offers secure gateways for data access to protect sensitive information and security measures will prevent data loss and ensure proper authentication of user access to the system.

  • Real-time data and information – because today’s back-office systems are not integrated, period end closing activities and reconciliations can take weeks to perform. Workday will give agency leaders the ability to see data and make more strategic decisions based on real-time information. 

  • Enhanced user experience – state finance and accounting staff use 1960s-era “green screen” technology to perform critical business activities in AFRS. Workday will provide them with new and modern technology that is on par with private industry. This will also make it easier to attract and retain talent. 

  • Improved system support – AFRS is an antiquated system that requires support from a shrinking pool of skilled resources sometimes referred to as “COBOL cowboys” (due to their valiant effort to support this aged system). Workday is a cloud-based, software as a subscription system that will be regularly updated, maintained, and supported as part of the state’s investment. 

  • Business process efficiencies – by moving to a standardized set of business processes across the state, there will be less variation in how activities are performed. We expect these standardizations to result in faster work completion, increased accessibility to real time data, greater economies of scale, and reduced learning curves for staff who move to different agencies. In future phases, Workday will create greater opportunities for employee self-service, which will help better distribute workloads.