Workday: How effective is your HR
How effective is your HR department, and how does it manage the hybrid workforce?
01 November 2023
Every big technology company needs an origin story, the humbler, the better. Workday is headquartered in the tree-lined Pleasanton, an easy hour’s drive from San Francisco. Co-founder Dave Duffield used to run his company PeopleSoft from the town, but sold the company to Oracle for $10.3 billion in 2004 after what was said to be a relentless chase by Larry Ellison. Duffield bid “tearful goodbyes” to his 300 or so employees, and headed north. He then met up with Aneel Bhusri, his old chief strategist at PeopleSoft, at a Truckee diner in Lake Tahoe, and it was there, perhaps over its famous classic buttermilk pancakes, where the pair hatched the plan for Workday. It would go on to compete with PeopleSoft, and others, in what’s known as human capital management. They opened the office back in Pleasanton three years later, and an IPO followed in 2012, valuing the company at $9.5 billion.
Duffield (83) is now CEO emeritus, and has spent his time spreading around his vast wealth, of which over $300 million went to companion animal welfare charities. Bhusri has also done very well – Forbes said he was worth $3.1 billion as of 2021. Both men also still hold 67% of the company’s voting shares, the better to insulate it from a hostile takeover, and Bhusri is still at the helm as co-CEO, along with Carl Eschenbach, who it’s thought will eventually take over as sole chief executive.
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