FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

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About Workday

Yes. Workday's accessibility functionality will enable you to:

  • Magnify text on a responsive interface that optimizes content based on your device's screen size.
  • View Workday with high color and contrast, improving legibility for all users.
  • Use compatibile assistive technology like a screen reader for text-to-speech output.
  • Use keyboard support to navigate through Workday without a mouse.

Penn State is providing feedback on accessibility to Workday based on user engagement testing conducted with employees in need of accommodation.

Employee self-service enables employees to update key information about themselves such as contact information, emergency contacts, direct deposit accounts, preferred name, legal name, citizenship status, gender, ethnicity, etc. Some personal information updates may require supporting documentation and/or approval by HR Shared Services.

Supervisory organizations are the primary foundation of Workday, as they show who reports to whom. Employees belong to a supervisory organization overseen by their Manager. A Manager in Workday is anyone who supervises one or more direct report(s). All employees at Penn State must be in a supervisory organization, as this is the structure used to run business processes, collect data, and designate workers to their manager and appropriate support roles. Supervisory organizations drive the following: visibility into the employee record, access to processes and tasks, business process routing and approvals, as well as reporting relationships.

All employees - including faculty, staff, technical service, and students - must belong to a supervisory organization. Once an employee is hired, they become a ‘Member‘ of the supervisory organization into which they were hired. A Manager of a supervisory organization is hired into the supervisory organization above (superior to) the one that he/she manages. The Manager of a supervisory organization is never a member of the supervisory organization that they manage. 

Organizations, based on the reporting hierarchy, are then arranged into superior and subordinate organizations. This structure creates an organizational chart throughout the entire University. 

Your Workday inbox will contain all activities that are required of you and you can act on these activities directly from your Workday inbox. You can choose to receive an email to your Penn State inbox, notifying you when there is an item requiring action. You can manage your email notification preferences in Workday. To manage your email notifications, click on the cloud icon in the upper right-hand corner. Click My Account and then click Change Preferences. 

Yes. As of March 23, 2020, Penn State went live with Workday Recruiting, the University's new recruiting technology. However, internal technical service job bidding will continue to take place in the Electronic Job Management System (EJMS).  

Yes. Penn State went live with the Workday Mobile Application in May 2021. Through this convenient and time-saving application, Penn State employees can perform many of the popular self-service tasks done through the desktop system on the go.

For a list of benefits, features, and directions on how to download the app, Penn State HR has created a dedicated Workday mobile app web page.



Penn State IT will service all technical issues that may arise related to the Workday Mobile, including downloading, installing, or authenticating. For questions regarding Workday data or processes, please submit an Inquiry via the WorkLion portal.

Workday is Penn State's cloud-based HR-Payroll system. This software, which includes human resources, payroll, benefits, recruiting, and time tracking, serves the needs of Penn State employees. 


Workday’s user-friendly interface is designed with faculty, staff, technical service, student employees and graduate assistants in mind. Depending on your role, you can access and update information such as direct deposit accounts, benefits elections, and tax withholdings through a web browser on your computer or mobile device. Most employees, except for internal technical service job bidding, will use Workday to apply to open positions at Penn State. Some employees also submit time worked and time off through Workday. All information is secured but highly accessible.



Yes, all categories of faculty, staff, technical service, and student employees will use Workday. Through cloud-based access, Workday gives all employees greater access and control of their personal information. 


Yes, as of Fall 2018, Benefits open enrollment takes place in Workday.


Workday allows you to delegate your Inbox items to another full-time employee for a period of up to two weeks without any additional approvals. If you need to delegate your inbox tasks to a part-time employee or for a period of longer than two weeks, your HR Consultant must approve the delegation. Instructions for how to delegate your inbox tasks can be found by searching for “Delegate Tasks” in the WorkLion Knowledge Base and clicking on the article titled “Approve and Delegate Tasks in your Inbox”.  Faculty "managers" should discuss delegation options with their HR Strategic Partner. Time worked and time off approvals can be delegated to a unit-based Timekeeper, depending upon unit guidelines. Performance reviews cannot be delegated.

In Workday, there are two types of supervisory organizations – job management or position management – based on staffing models. If you have employees who belong to both types of organizations, then you will have two organizations that report to you. 


Pay history began accumulating in Workday in January 2018,  at the start of the calendar tax year. Pay history for the years 2011-2017, such as pay stubs and W-2s, are now being housed in a tool called MyPayHistory. You can access this tool from the WorkLion portal or by going directly to the website. These records will be maintained in accordance with Penn State's data retention policy. 


Yes, Workday's full website is mobile friendly and provides responsive design when accessed through an internet browser on a desktop or mobile device.

Errors, in red, will not allow you to complete the task until corrected.
Alerts, in orange, notify you of a potential problem, but will still allow you to complete the task.

Penn State and Workday hold information security as a very high priority. Workday delivers world-class infrastructure, policies, and procedures to ensure your data is secure and protected. Security threats and risks are mitigated through strong internal controls and a comprehensive security program. Workday consistently passes rigorous third-party compliance audits, including multiple SAS70 Type II audits, and certifies to the US Safe Harbor program for data privacy. Still want to know more? Read Workday’s full security report.

Time Tracking

As an exempt employee, you are not required to submit time to receive your regular pay in Workday. However, it may be necessary for you to submit time for other reasons, such as:


  • You worked on a University holiday

You will need to record hours worked and, under Compensatory Time, select either Comp Earned (for double comp) or Comp Paid (for half comp/half pay).

  • You earned Holiday Comp Hours when a holiday falls on a day you are not normally scheduled to work

For Time Type, select Holiday Comp Earned for Scheduled Day Off

  • You worked during a campus closure, are deemed essential, and therefore earned comp time

For Time Type, select Campus Closure Compensatory Hours Earned


For more detailed holiday and campus closure policy information, visit HR 34 and HR 105.

Time periods, monthly or biweekly, are locked after 3 months.  If you need to submit time, add time, or make a correction to your timesheet for a locked period, please open a Neocase inquiry requesting to have the time submitted and/or the details of what needs to be entered or submitted.  The WorkLion Management Office will take care of the request and your timesheet will still go to your manager or timekeeper for approval.