Workday updates to include pronouns, audio pronunciation of employees' names

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — As part of Penn State’s efforts to promote and foster equity, inclusion and belonging, Human Resources (HR) is rolling out new Workday features designed to support individual identities.  

Starting in mid-March, members of the Penn State community can record an audio pronunciation of their name in Workday. This optional new feature will make it easier for individuals to learn the right pronunciation of colleagues' names. With the new feature, you can search for and listen to the pronunciation of a colleague's name within an individual's Workday profile.

As names are an integral part of an individual’s identity, a person can feel excluded when others mispronounce their name. Further, when individuals have unfamiliar names, others may fail to use their names at all, which can be a barrier to connecting, networking and progressing at work. This new feature aims to address those existing barriers and make the workplace more equitable and inclusive for all.   

The feature will be integrated into the onboarding process for new employees when they provide other personal information such as marital status, race/ethnicity and military service in Workday. Current employees can record an audio pronunciation of their name any time in Workday

In addition, starting on March 20, individuals who have chosen to have their pronouns displayed using the settings in Penn State Accounts will have them automatically visible in Workday. Updates to pronoun selections and display options must be made through Penn State Accounts

Penn State HR is also providing increased language access to employees who now have the option to display the Learning Resource Network (LRN) interface in Spanish as well as English. Additionally, closed captioning for the content libraries in the LRN offer a wide range of language options, further enhancing access of these resources to those who may speak languages other than English and those with hearing and other disabilities. 

“We are pleased to have these new inclusion and belonging resources to help our employees learn the correct name pronunciation and pronouns of their colleagues. This is an important effort towards creating a more inclusive and welcoming environment for all employees.” said Jennifer Wilkes, vice president of human resources. “Further, increasing language access in the University’s learning resource network provides more employees access to the same resources.”  

To learn more about the latest Penn State HR diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging updates, existing programs and resources, check out the following knowledge base articles and websites: 

Employees with questions should contact human resources services at 814-865-1473 or submit an inquiry via WorkLion