On trend: Organizing around teams

On trend: Organizing around teams

Posted by Walt Sokoll on August 30, 2016.

A startling 92 percent of companies responding to Deloitte’s 2016 Global Human Capital Trends research rated redesigning the organization as very important or important, making it the No. 1 trend in this year’s report. One of the primary ways we see this organizational restructuring playing out is in the rise of teams—companies moving away from traditional hierarchical organization structures and empowering networks of teams centered around customers, products, markets, or missions.

The 2016 Trends report cites two primary drivers of the move toward teams. First is that teams are generally smaller, engage people better, and can be faster and more nimble in delivering on a mission. Second, digital capabilities are helping teams stay better connected, both within the team and with external customers, vendors, and other business partners.

We have also seen a number of the organizations we work with using Workday to support these more dynamic and team-based organization structures. Workday enables companies to group employees using various standard hierarchies and to also use its Custom Organization functionality to track teams. Despite the word “custom,” the tracking of teams can be done with delivered Workday functionality and really only requires simple configuration of the software.

For example, at one of our large regional health system clients, Workday is supporting teams at the organizational level. A variety of patient-centered teams exist, and team members change often in pursuit of the best patient experience. Workday makes it easy for HR to keep employee records and org charts up to date to reflect minor reorganizations of managers and teams. HR business partners—on-the-ground HR liaisons stationed in the facility they support—simply generate a report on a particular org structure, flag any changes, and enter them into Workday, which is a simpler and less time-consuming process than they had before.

Another example: a global real estate company that wanted to track the success of the teams that generate revenue for the organization. The company implemented Workday HCM and Workday Financials. Using the Custom Organization feature, it was able to segment people who may or may not report up through the same organizational hierarchy and allow for reporting on the aggregate revenue they generate in a specific market. The flexibility to move people quickly between teams and still track the revenue being generated by each team has enabled the organization to make better business decisions about how it deploys talent.

Finally, a global insurance company developed a special high-potential talent program and wanted to track the success of the individuals who participated. High-potential executives were placed on separate teams to engage in enhanced professional development opportunities. These individuals remained in their traditional corporate organizations, but the company also used the Custom Organization functionality in Workday to track members of these teams. Talent Management processes were conducted separately for the executives participating in these programs. This enabled the organization to easily determine the effectiveness of the program based on the individual team members’ performance.

The trend data and our own experience show that dynamic teams are becoming a crucial part of success for many companies. We expect this trend to continue to gain momentum. Workday’s ability to track the performance of teams in aggregate, to track the performance of the individuals on the teams, and to quickly and easily move people between teams provides our clients the ability to more efficiently and effectively deploy teams within their organizations.


Walt Sokoll leads Deloitte Consulting LLP’s US Workday HCM Practice. He has a wide range of additional consulting experience including software selection, technology roadmaps, business process design, and organizational assessments.

As used in this document, “Deloitte” means Deloitte Consulting LLP, a subsidiary of Deloitte LLP. Please see www.deloitte.com/us/about for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries. Certain services may not be available to attest clients under the rules and regulations of public accounting.

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