back to article Canadian uni blamed users after Workday HR switch, but some teaching assistants say they're still waiting to be paid

Teaching assistants at Canada's McGill University spent Christmas waiting to be paid as the institution struggled with a new Workday HR and payroll system, according to the Association of Graduate Students Employed at McGill (AGSEM). The association said that more than 460 TAs were not paid within the first 30 days of starting …

  1. Kimo

    Ohio State just made the switch to Workday. Can’t wait to see what fun ensues.

    1. Blackjack Silver badge

      For such a wonderful system I wonder how many bribes were paid?

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ah the joy!

    A previous employer switched from a reliable home-grown system to Workday. After a few years of pain -- for us employees, that is -- they switched to something else.

  3. don't you hate it when you lose your account

    Do they have

    Any connection to Oracle.

    1. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

      Re: Do they have

      Or the wonky financial software that the UK post offices had?

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

  4. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    "outdated systems"

    Translation: working.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      And with a UI designed to be efficient and functional rather than pretty

    2. Strahd Ivarius Silver badge

      "not cloudy"

      (and that explains why it was working properly)

  5. gobaskof

    Computer says no

    The biggest issue is a lack of competent staff to override a failing system. Departments are staffed by people with total confidence that all systems are bug free with no ability to override. At the University of Bath my wife did not get paid for demonstrating (TA work) for the first 6 months of her PhD due to being an edge case (non-UK non-EU student with full right to work in the UK did not compute).

    What was amusing was about 3 months after this they overpaid her just as the holidays were coming up. They then demanded the money back instantly. I had great fun crafting emails giving them hoops to jump though to prove that the money was paid in error. Reasonably I asked for the money to be deducted from future pay cheques. The cash was not that huge but due to the summer break it was likely to taker 4-5 months for her to repay it. Now they were the ones out of pocket the problem was quickly escalated to the smarmy manager who pointed out that this money while small was going to be 4 months of income for my wife. I simply thanked him for understanding that the money was significant for us and not for him and thanked him for agreeing to take the money from future pay cheques. I was so polite the smarmy prick couldn't think of a way to say that he never agreed to this.

    It is amazing how the speed of escalation shifts when the debt is owed to them. From my experience most payroll systems screw up occasionally. Unfortunately trusting a human to fix a problem manually is "outdated thinking".

    1. JimboSmith Silver badge

      Re: Computer says no

      A mate of mine works for a company that moved to Workday. He is working for a different department at the moment because he was supporting a new team before the pandemic hit. However he's never been moved in Workday to his 'temporary' new manager. Therefore his old manager has to deal with holiday, pay issues etc. He's been told/found out that his company Workday isn't configured to allow for multiple managers. This is possible he tells me but the company haven't bothered. His HR department are uninterested though as he's only 'temporarily' with that team. That posting was supposed to end just under a year ago so very temporary.

      1. fizzywig2020

        Re: Computer says no

        We have Workday and have (in some instances) 15-20 managers for teams - Workday can absolutely support multi-manager!

        There just has to be a willingness to work at the solution.

        1. JimboSmith Silver badge

          Re: Computer says no

          Yes as I say he was aware that Workday can support multiple managers. It's his company who haven't implemented that feature in Workday.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Grinds my Gears

    Workday sounds like a great idea but is implemented by people who have no clue and ends up being an absolute pile of shit.

    Win win for workday as they sell their solution and then sell extra consultation for fixing it.

  7. YetAnotherJoeBlow


    Does nobody know how to cut a manual check anymore?

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Wondering...

      They might if they knew what it was. There's probably a shortage of people who know that. Or who know that the job of paying employees isn't the computer's, it's the employer's.

    2. Dave314159ggggdffsdds Silver badge

      Re: Wondering...

      You missed the key line in the article - in some cases at least, they were waiting for signoffs from academics on hours worked by the TAs. If the academic just didn't bother* signing off the timesheets after repeated requests, demands, etc, it's not something technology can resolve, and nor is it a situation where getting a known payment out is the problem.

      *Or tried to get clever. I've known academics evade budgeting restrictions by refusing to sign off work they'd commissioned, because the amount wasn't subtracted from their budget until they did. When it was eventually signed off, the uni accounts dept tried to tell me that I wasn't getting paid because the Prof had exceeded his budget by 5x. Obviously I just laughed at them, and then enforced the late fees I'd been willing to waive...

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