Task Naming Guidelines
The Why and How
Our goals are to bring consistency to how we name tasks and improve the discoverability of tasks in Workday.
The guidelines are to inform new task names, not to cause a renaming of all previous task names. As there are updates to particular product features, teams can consider the guidelines and see if they want to change task names as part of improving the experience for the user. If you do decide to rename a task, consider the impact across Workday and notify all stakeholders, including doc writers, education teams, services teams, and more.
Who Made These Anyway? And WHY?
These guidelines were developed in a cross-functional effort, with input from the following groups: product management, dev training, customer support, design, and doc writers.
They are intended for PMs, designers, writers, and anyone else involved in the naming of tasks in Workday.
The guidelines are just that—guidelines, not rules. Be aware of these, but don’t feel you need to follow them to the letter if they don't make sense for your use case.
Note that, in this version, our guidelines do not cover web services tasks.
We want to evolve these guidelines. As you have input, please reach out on #ux-product-content.
Best Practices for Task Naming
Consider Purpose and Complexity
- Think about the purpose of the task you are naming and who the users are.
- Leverage any language you know the user will understand intuitively: what words would they use to describe the purpose or action of the task? What might they expect the task to be called? What might they call it in their own words?
- Think about related tasks (if there are any)—what are they called? What nouns are used?
- Think about how long the task name will need to be. When possible, try to use fewer words and less technical ones.
Look in the Same Product Vertical
- With each task name, you make an intentional choice to either conform to or diverge from existing patterns. If you choose to be inconsistent with already-established patterns, have a good reason.
Look at Other Product Verticals
- Some users, such as implementers and Workday admins, see task names in many areas. For this reason, it’s important to search the task name you’re considering to make sure other, similarly-named tasks don’t already exist.
- Don’t give a task the same name as a report because this will cause confusion for users.
Plan for Search
- Think about what terms a user might use to search for this task. What keywords most accurately describe what the tasks does?
- If possible, remove extra articles and other words that might prevent a user from finding the right task.
- Don’t use overly long or complex words, or jargon that a user might not know. Try to use the simplest word that accurately conveys what the task does.
Think About Product Maturity
- When naming tasks, take into account how mature your product area is.
- If your product is more mature, try to be consistent with what's already in the product, as long as it makes sense for your user.
- If your product is newer and you don’t have a pattern to rely on, think towards the future—you’re setting precedent for naming of other, related tasks down the line. You may also find that, because your product is newer, simpler task names may already be taken by another product area. You may need to add modifiers or more details to differentiate your task.
Consider Permissions and Configurability
- Will the task name be configurable by customers? Even if a task will later be renamed by a customer, strive for a default name that sets a good example. Keep in mind that customers are more likely to change the nouns in a task name than the verbs.
- What are the security permissions for the task? These may impact whether you use “My” or other terms geared towards a specific user.
Take XO into Account
- What you name your task in XO will be user facing. Make sure your name does not sound like code.
- XO does not prevent you from creating a task name identical to another. So be sure to check what’s out there to prevent confusion!
- Class names may influence task names in the case of convenience tasks (for example, View and Edit are often default names given to tasks). Name the class what makes sense for coding purposes, and override the name the user sees if it seems more helpful.
Validate the Name
- If possible, test the name with users or get feedback on it in a Design Partner Group.
- Run the name by colleagues--your doc writer, other PMs, designers, content strategists.
Let’s Break It Down
Strong task names typically start with a verb and end with a noun phrase. Your task name will likely consist of a few specific types of words: verbs, nouns, modifiers, and abbreviations. Here are some things to keep in mind about using each one.
For notes on specific verbs and their usage in Workday, see the list of Verb Definitions below.
- Your task name must include a verb.
- Use the imperative voice: Do XYZ. Phrase the task name like you're talking to the user. Stick to the present tense.
- Verbs should describe what the user is doing in the task, or what the task is capable of doing.
- Does the verb encompass all that the task can do? Does it need to, or does it only need to describe the primary capability?
Nouns are people, places, and things. The nouns in your task name will give the user more information about what they are doing or acting on in a task.
- Nouns should answer some of the following questions: What is this thing? What does the user call it?
- Think about what nouns would be the most intuitive for the user.
- Nouns should be unique and specific. Search for the noun in Workday, and see which other tasks or reports contain this noun. If your user is likely to see these tasks or reports, consider how to differentiate your task name. Verbs will be repeated, but your noun phrase should be different enough so that when a user is searching and sees 2 tasks side by side, they know which task to pick.
My and Your
- Be consistent in the use of “My” in task names, particularly on the same page and within related tasks.
- “My” is usually used for ESS and MSS tasks in Workday.
- We don’t use “your” in task names.
- Abbreviate only when necessary.
- Only use abbreviations if you are sure that your users know and use the abbreviation.
- Only use abbreviations to replace long or difficult words. For example, in some cases it makes sense to use Org for organization. It would not make sense to use Ben for Benefits.
- Your abbreviation should still sound professional and not too casual.
Grammar and Punctuation
- Use title case.
- Don't use periods at the end.
- Avoid using articles in task names (e.g. a, an, the).
Checklists and Tables
Task Name Checklist
When you’ve named your task, use this checklist to confirm that it follows the guidelines.
|Consistent||Verb that begins task name is consistent with how the verb is used in product.|
|Descriptive||Verb covers what the user can do in the task—it’s appropriate for the capabilities the user will have.|
|Specific||Nouns are specific and not too technical, and abbreviations used are absolutely necessary.|
|Intuitive||Words are as straightforward and non-technical as possible—the user would describe the task this way themselves.|
|Unique||Not too similar to task names in your own or other product areas (that your user is likely to see), but unique enough that in a list of search results, the user can pick out the right task.|
|Validated||Validate the name with users, DPGs, and colleagues (PMs, designers, doc writers, content strategists).|
Dos and Don’ts
|Register Workdog||Create Register Workdog||Don’t use two verbs. There’s no requirement to begin a task that involves creation with “Create.”|
|Register Workdog||Workdog Registration||Don’t write your task name as a noun phrase; include a verb.|
|Find Puppy Class & Find Advanced Puppy Class||Find Puppy Class & Find Puppy Course||Don’t give a task a name that is too similar to another task name. Consider how your task differs and try to use that in the task name. |
Don’t have multiple tasks that perform the same function and have different names.
|Create New Workdog Account||Create a New Workdog Account||Don’t include articles in the task name.|
|Create New Workdog Account||Create WAP (Workdog Account Parameters)||Don’t use jargon, language that is too technical, or unnecessary abbreviations.|
|Change My Workdog Benefits||Change Your Workdog Benefits||Don’t use “Your” in task names.|
|Add||1. To take something that already exists (e.g. a phone number, a document) and put it in Workday. |
2. To add more things to something that already exists in Workday (e.g. a row in a table or grid).
|Add Phone Number |
Add Row for Copy Expense Report
|Archive||To hide something from view or move it to a place in Workday where it is not readily available.||Archive Goals||Items that are archived are still available in Workday.|
|Cancel||To annul or stop something.||Cancel Business Process |
Cancel Pending Alternate Name Change
Cancel Open Enrollment
|Something that is cancelled is not deleted, and a record of it may still remain in Workday. |
“Cancel” may be appropriate for things in draft mode or things that have already been submitted.
In some cases when a process is already complete, it may be better to use “close” or “rescind.”
|Change||To substitute or modify all or part of something.||Change Benefits |
Change My Emergency Contacts
Change Candidate Personal Information
|Change and edit have similar meanings. In some cases, you may want to use the verb “Edit” instead.|
|Correct||1. To make a change to an item or task once it has already been approved. |
2. To fix something after submission but prior to approval.
|Correct Time Off |
Correct Leave of Absence
|A “Correct” task is often related to another task that requires a business process.|
|Create||To make something new, such as taking some data or item that doesn’t exist and originate it in Workday.||Create Expense Report |
Create Academic Plan
Create Cost Center
|Delete||To permanently erase or get rid of something.||Delete Benefit Plan |
Delete Custom Worktag
Delete Stock Plan
|Once a thing is deleted, it must be recreated from scratch because it no longer exists in Workday. |
In some cases, an item can never be truly deleted from Workday, and “Remove” should be used instead.
See also “Remove.”
|Edit||To modify an aspect of something. This might include adding, removing, substituting, or changing some part of a larger whole.||Edit Academic Period |
Edit Job Application
Edit My Expense Transactions
|Depending on the details of submission or approval, editing may be allowed before or after submission, or both.|
|Find||To locate or return something or a set of things.||Find Bank Statements |
Find Course Offerings
|Often used in report names.|
|Fix||To enable the administrator of a customer tenant to correct data.||Fix Time Clock Event Error |
Fix Invalid Review Credit Card Transaction Events
|Used only for tasks that Workday creates in the event of a customer reported bug. |
Do not use “Fix” as a synonym for “Correct”.
|Maintain||1. To perform upkeep on or make changes to a set of things. May include other actions such as add, create, change, remove, substitute. This is more comprehensive than “Edit”. |
2. For admin use only: create, remove, or disable data that can be used in other tasks by an end user.
|Maintain ~Competency~ Categories |
Maintain ~Goal~ Categories
Maintain Benefit Coverage Types
Maintain Course Subjects
Maintain My Worker Documents
|When deciding whether to use “Manage” or “Maintain”, think about what your user will find more intuitive, and which verb is more consistently used in your product area. |
“Maintain” sounds more technical, and may be more appropriate for an admin or professional user. It is frequently used for setup tasks when configuring Workday.
|Manage||To control multiple aspects of something. May include other actions such as add, create, change, remove, substitute. This is more comprehensive than “Edit”. |
|Manage Enrollments (report) |
Manage Interview Team
Manage Organization Goals
|“Manage” is used more often in certain areas of Workday, such as HCM. It is used more for tasks dealing with transactional and tenanted data, where “Maintain” is used for setup data.|
|Remove||To take something out of or off of something else.||Remove Student from Cohort |
Remove ~Evergreen~ Candidate Pool
|Something can be removed from a folder, but remain in Workday; similarly, a rule or permission can be removed from some criteria but still exist and be re-applied. |
“Remove” has a less permanent connotation than “Delete.”
|Rescind||To take back.||Rescind Financial Aid Disbursements |
Rescind Open Enrollment
|Usually used as part of a business process.|
|Review||To examine something, usually for approval.||Review Time Off Request |
Review Expense Report
|Revise||To edit, before or after something has already been approved.||Revise Budget Amendment |
Revise UK Court Order
|Usually used as part of a business process. |
A specific use of revise refers to the action users get in the Inbox after an event has been sent back.
|Set Up||To configure by establishing rules or settings.||Set Up One-Time Passcode |
Set Up Authenticator App
|May be used either for first time configuration, or to edit something previously configured.|
|Update||To make something more current or to create a newer version of something that already exists in Workday.||Mass Update Stocking Locations |
Update ~Plan~ from Workbook
Update Stock Grants
|When something is updated, changes are only applied to it from a particular point in time going forward. In contrast, editing or changing something does not involve time-specific modifications.|
|View||To look at something without the ability to make any changes.||View Recent Payments |
View Open Invoices
|“View” tasks are often paired with “Edit” tasks.|
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