Mission to Launch: IRP Student's timeline explained

Mission to Launch: IRP Student's timeline explained

July 12, 2022

At UBC, we are working towards the next step in modernizing our enterprise system infrastructure. The Integrated Renewal Program, Student (IRP Student) is tasked with delivering a renewed, reliable, and secure student information system as a foundation to support the university’s academic mission. 

While the renewed student information system (Workday Student) will not be launched until the 2023/24 academic year, there is a lot of work to do and milestones to reach along the way. This article will break down the various stages of IRP Student’s high-level timeline, highlighting key activities throughout the project. The graphic below illustrates the program’s history, the launch sequencing, and ongoing periods of Hypercare. 




UBC has been working to modernize its systems for several years. As early as 2004, planning proceeded for the replacement of the Student, HR, and Finance systems were underway. It became apparent, however, that there are significant interdependencies between the projects. As a result, the Student Academic Systems Initiative (SASI), HR Finance Renewal Program (HR/FIN), and Procurement Modernization governance structures were integrated into one program, forming the Integrated Renewal Program (IRP). In May of 2018, a key milestone was reached with the decision to implement Workday as the foundational system for HR, Finance, and Student Administration. 


  • Planning and Architecture phase – determines how Workday Student would be implemented at UBC by reviewing current business processes and conducting gap analyses to accommodate UBC’s needs.  
  • Design stage – focuses on engaging with key UBC community experts and committees to make several design decisions that will inform how Workday Student will function.  
  • Build stage – involves incorporating design input into Workday Student, its integrations, and newly created point solutions.  
  • Testing stage – entails testing the final system to ensure Workday Student and all applications function as expected to support UBC processes. During this stage, the project team will also finalize the training materials and kick-off end-user training.  
  • Go Decision – involves a final stage of rigorous checks to ensure the system is ready for launch  


In November 2020, IRP successfully launched the renewed HR and Finance systems in Workday. The 2021-2022 bar indicates all the ramp-up and preparatory activities including the Planning and Architecture phases. During this time, some product gaps in Workday Student were identified, and it became evident that due to the complexity of UBC’s processes and requirements, a number of these gaps would need to be addressed with a broader ecosystem approach.  

The Configure and Prototype stage of the program includes both the Design and Build Milestones (milestones 3 and 4 respectively). The Design and Build stage will continue through the remainder of 2022 before moving into the Testing period and then the Go Decision in July of 2023.  

Beginning September 2023, this is followed by the period when prospective students apply to UBC using EdPlanner BC (EPBC), a mandated, provincially managed service for undergraduate students in BC.  Applications first go through EPBC in September and will be stored until Workday Student is online, and will then be integrated with our renewed system.  



Workday Student (WD STU) is the name of UBC’s new student information system. However, in addition to the Workday component, the new system will incorporate existing and newly created applications (point solutions), which will work together to meet the University’s student administrative needs. Workday Student will be launched in three stages: 

 Launch 1 – Initiate (October/November 2023) 

 Launch 1 initiates the systems that admit undergraduate students to UBC and prepare them for the 2024 winter session. 

Launch 2 – Activate (February/March 2024)  

Launch 2 activates systems that support students to study, advance, and graduate from UBC.  It is important to note that between Launches 1 and 2 the current SIS and Workday Student will run in parallel, meaning both systems will be live. The existing SIS will be processing, supporting, and finishing the 2024 summer session and Workday Student will be exclusively used from the 2024 winter session onward. 

Launch 3+ - Align (Fall 2024)  

By September 2024, Workday Student will be the sole student information system. However, although the system will be fully launched, this will only be the beginning. Launch 3 and beyond will include initiatives to create continuous improvements and enhancements to UBC's systems – allowing us to grow and improve for years to come. 


After each Launch there is a Hypercare phase that will continue based on need. Hypercare is a period where additional dedicated resources are available to troubleshoot issues that arise and support the community through the transition to the new system.


*Reflecting on our experience so far in working with Workday and seeing how our design is shaping up, we realize that we have to embrace change and be confident in our ability to adapt. Workday Student, along with IRP Student’s functional requirements, are evolving quickly and this could mean that we may have to adapt our approach throughout the project timeline.