NEWS AND INSIGHTS
Integrations for a truly connected technology ecosystem: A conversation with VNDLY’s Chief Technology Officer
As companies continue to adapt to the dramatic changes brought on by the global COVID-19 pandemic, one major shift sweeping the industry is a faster move toward creating technology ecosystems that increase the pace of digital transformation. Organizations that had long-term plans are speeding those up, and companies that were still undecided have chosen to act now.
These swift changes, in response to the unpredictable nature of today’s workforce needs, must be supported by technology that helps users effectively manage their extended workforces across their entire organizations. They may also require platforms that can share data with other systems, ensuring accuracy around all manner of contractor and traditional employee data.
When companies invest in large, sweeping platforms, like Workday, to manage companywide departments and worker populations, they look for other platforms that integrate seamlessly and do not require engineering or maintenance provided by internal IT teams. Adopting those additional technologies that can integrate and become part of the ecosystem saves time and money, making the initial investment more valuable. For more insight into technology ecosystems and integrations, and specifically those between VNDLY and Workday, we talked with VNDLY’s Chief Technology Officer, Chuck Mobley.
VNDLY integrations helping workforce management
When companies decide to adopt multiple technology platforms to create an ecosystem, having a vendor management system (VMS) that easily integrates with existing technology can solve problems at many levels. VNDLY’s modern, cloud-based platform was built with native application program interface, or API, integrations to ease implementation and use. For many companies, the VMS platform becomes the central piece of technology that connects other departments, including HR, IT, procurement, finance and legal.
“When we talk about technologies working together, or creating ecosystem alignment, the main benefit is the ability to streamline operations and processes across the entire company,” Mobley said. “That guiding principle led us to build VNDLY with configurable, native API integrations for other products like Workday, allowing our clients to create the ecosystem that works for them using the technology tools they choose.”
To illustrate the capabilities and value of VNDLY’s integrations, Mobley talked about the company’s 22 native APIs built for use with Workday. VNDLY has created integrations for use with many other platforms, but the Workday suite is the most robust. The integrations cover a range of client needs, including creating job requisitions, managing onboarding and offboarding, updating cost centers and updating supplier information.
The key difference between VNDLY’s APIs and the data-sharing tools offered by other VMS providers, most often SFTP file transfers, is that they are built and maintained by VNDLY — no client development, coding or other work is necessary.
“It’s an important point to underscore that our clients don’t have to commit IT resources to the integrations in any way. We own them and take on all responsibility for keeping them up to date,” Mobley said. “So we’re changing the industry narrative with our API integrations — it’s plug and play. There is just no work the client needs to do.”
Diving into the details
When companies using Workday also use VNDLY, the implementation process is simplified because collecting some foundational data can be accomplished using API integrations. There is a simplified setup and update process for data like supervisory organizations, cost centers, locations and full-time employees. And with a more automated data exchange process, errors are reduced, resulting in higher-quality data around the company’s extended workforce.
Removing manual updates benefits VNDLY and Workday users at the same time.
“The real-time nature of our integrations sets us apart from our competition,” Mobley said. “When an update happens in VNDLY, we can send that over to Workday, updating that system automatically.”
This streamlines contingent worker data changes, lessening manual work for procurement teams.
A simplified recruitment process is possible when companies integrate these two platforms. When hiring managers publish job requisitions for non-employee workers in Workday, those items can be imported into VNDLY so they can be distributed to suppliers for candidate sourcing.
Companies need full visibility into their entire extended workforces, so VNDLY has created three components that can be integrated with Workday:
- Worker tracking — for headcount tracking only
- Contingent worker — used for standard contingent hiring scenarios using a supplier distribution model
- Statement of work — for managing project-based work
Using these tools can streamline onboarding and offboarding because once contingent workers are onboarded in VNDLY, they can be automatically set up in Workday using configurable integration workflows.
“When work details or situations change, VNDLY’s integrations automatically make the changes across systems,” Mobley said.
Compliance can also be managed more easily. Even though VNDLY can be the system of record for an extended workforce, some companies use Workday as their hub for managing all workers. This means that Workday becomes the system that feeds other systems within the company.
“Our integrations help maintain worker compliance because they allow the transfer of data to maintain a clear picture of worker movement. Whether it’s hiring, badging, assigning equipment or updating a location, our APIs ensure that downstream provisioning is happening correctly,” Mobley said.
Mobley said managing contingent worker provisioning has emerged as one of VNDLY’s clients’ biggest headaches. If all systems are not updated quickly and accurately, workers will not be in compliance. VNDLY’s APIs update Workday as soon as changes are made by procurement, which saves time and removes the worry. For companies tracking SOW-based workers, VNDLY allows incorporation of those workers into the tracking and management systems so they also remain compliant.
The API integrations currently available for Workday grew out of client need and are updated regularly. Mobley reminded that while these integrations are already providing a better user experience than that of the competition, VNDLY continues to innovate.
“Just because we have some great integrations doesn’t mean we’re done. We have a roadmap for more integrations and other ways we can improve our partnership with Workday,” he said. “We are all on this digital transformation journey together, so our API philosophy expands as theirs does. It’s not only about the APIs we have available today. It’s the use cases that we’re looking to solve for tomorrow.”