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What Does it Take to Make Bidirectional Workday Greenhouse Integration Successful?

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Your time is important. So, let us give you a quick glimpse into what we’ve covered in this blog. 

An insider view of high-growth startup CTO’s decision-making,

  • To achieve seamless Workday Greenhouse integration
  • Aligned with their headcount forecasting, recruitment strategy, and future integration roadmap
  • With the help of an extended team of Greenhouse integration specialists


That led the startup to pave the way from here, 

  • Manual data entry of newly created and approved job requisition and positions from Workday to Greenhouse
  • Manual data entry of new hires from Greenhouse to Workday

To here, 

  • Automatic data sync of job requisition and positions from Workday to Greenhouse
  • Automatic data sync of new hires data from Greenhouse to Workday

In essence, you will learn what it takes to make Greenhouse ATS integration with Workday and vice versa free from technology debt and successful, with the help of Greenhouse integration specialists.

So, let’s get started.

When did the startup realize the need for Workday Greenhouse integration? 

Growth can easily backfire if you’re not prepared for it.

The client was North America-based one of the fastest-growing startups witnessing tremendous organic growth (and not growth fueled by the pandemic).

They had been using the Greenhouse platform to track applicants and Workday was their core HRIS.

To be specific, their HR team used to create job requisitions and positions in Workday and their recruitment team used to kick off recruitment for that created positions from Greenhouse.

Manual data transfer between these systems wasn’t taking a toll until their workforce increased 2X in just two quarters.

And when their headcount forecasting presented an unbelievable number of positions required to be filled to remain aligned with forecasted business numbers, the talent acquisition department issued ‘code red’ to management.

That triggered the need for bidirectional Greenhouse Workday integration so that recruitment teams could optimize candidate stages and the entire pipeline of data flow across Workday and Greenhouse.

While intensifying recruitment practices on a non-integrated HR system had already started causing damage to candidate experience, the whole thing turned into a more tech challenge and less HR challenge.

And that’s why CTO needed to step in.

How did the CTO approach Greenhouse ATS integration? 

The problems were known to everyone.

  • Created job requisitions and positions in Workday needed to be synced with Greenhouse with manual entries for kicking off recruitment.
  • New hires data needed to be transferred from Greenhouse to Workday manually.


And the solution was also known to everyone – integrating Greenhouse and Workday with the help of Greenhouse integration specialists.

But the deciding factor was an approach and how well they could navigate the approach through a lot of challenges!

Dealing with challenge #1: Lacking in-house expertise and having a non-flexible project deadline 

While CTO had easily comprehended what needed to be done to achieve real-time data sync between Workday and Greenhouse, what concerned him the most was a serious expertise gap within his organization that could turmoil the entire project timeline.

He drilled down the multiple options for easy decision-making for the two most important factors – team and solution.

After intense evaluation, he opted-in for deploying a team of Azilen’s Greenhouse integration specialists as their own extended integration team for carrying out custom integration.

Dealing with challenge #2: Undefined integration roadmap 

While discussing the potential approach with our HRTech integration team during the discovery phase, the startup CTO discovered that their integration roadmap was not yet defined.

What he had summed up was just Greenhouse Workday integration. But seeing the growth of his startup, multiple other integrations could require to be carried out in near future.

An undefined integration roadmap potentially increases your tech debt as rework might require on your already executed integrations while accommodating additional integrations.

To avoid such circumstances, we worked on defining the complete integration roadmap.

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Dealing with challenge #3: Reassessing the integration solution 

The client had already concluded to go for custom integration. But since the integration roadmap was now clear, reassessing the integration solution was inevitable.

Here, we suggested to them our in-house HRTech Integrator and presented how it would perfectly fit their use case and roadmap.

Dealing with challenge #4: Data mapping between Greenhouse and Workday 

For accurate data sync, data mapping is crucial. Because the same field value in Workday gets stored under a different field name in Greenhouse.

Let us explain the importance of data mapping with the following example of a use case.

(Both Greenhouse and Workday offer useful resources. Our Greenhouse integration specialists refer to these resources for meeting interoperability and compliance standards. The credit to the following mapping example goes to Greenhouse.)

Use Case: Workday job requisition and positions data sync with Greenhouse

In Workday, the recruitment team creates a job requisition that corresponds to single or multiple job positions.

To create a job requisition, the team needs to configure a scorecard, hiring team, interview plan, job post(s), department, office, and more.

This set of configurations applies to all job positions the team creates under that job requisition.

Because of this multi-level structure, you can either import job positions or import both job requisitions and job positions from Workday to Greenhouse.

Scenario #1: Importing job positions only  

Scenario #2: Importing job requisition and positions both 

Since the client generally had multiple job positions associated with a single job requisition, we proposed carrying out the import of both job requisition and positions from Workday to Greenhouse.

But that required custom data mapping as the field named ‘job position’ in Workday corresponds to the field name ‘job opening’ in Greenhouse.

Similarly, for the use case of Greenhouse data sync with Workday, our Greenhouse integration specialists mapped fields belonging to the candidate’s personal and contact details, job title, work history, education, skills for accurate data transfer into Workday.

How did the business workflows turn out at the end of integration? 

We achieved the successful integration for two use cases within 3 weeks. And the startup has been capitalizing on it, happily.

Here, we are sharing the achieved business workflow with regard to use cases.

Outcome for use case #1: Workday job requisition and positions data sync with Greenhouse

When an HR team in Workday creates and submits job positions along with job requisition and it gets approved, the payload gets transferred to Greenhouse.

This contains created requisition and all job positions linked with that particular requisition. So, when it gets transferred to Greenhouse, it corresponds to fields as per our mapping.

For example, requisition A in Workday maps to Job A in Greenhouse, position A-1 in Workday maps to Opening ID-1 in Greenhouse, position A-2 to Opening ID-2 and so on – under the umbrella of Job A in Greenhouse which is called Requisition A in Workday.

Outcome for use case #2: Greenhouse new hires data sync with Workday

The data-sharing architecture was set up leveraging webhook. Webhook enables Greenhouse to send candidate data to Workday as soon as a certain event takes place.

So, with a trigger of an event (recruiter clicks on ‘mark candidate as hired’ in Greenhouse), Greenhouse uses an http post call to deliver a JSON payload to an endpoint URL.

However, to listen to the Greenhouse https request, we set up a listener service in Workday using Workday Studio.

This way, after an applicant is marked as ‘hired’ in Greenhouse, his/her records get synced with Workday in real time.

6 key takeaways from a successful bidirectional Greenhouse Workday integration  

  • Treat integration as a tech challenge and not an HR challenge.
  • Integration is a matter of time. The faster you achieve, the higher ROI you seize. 
  • Replace an ‘integration need’ with an ‘integration roadmap’.
  • Make a wise decision between ‘Build’ Vs. ‘Buy’ for effective ROI against the roadmap.
  • Scalability must never be compromised.
  • What works for others does not always work for you. So, go specific!

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