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Workday Adaptive Planning Knowledge Center

Sandbox Instance and Refresh Requests

Sandbox Instance Information

A sandbox is a clone of a production instance or a blank non-populated instance. Sandboxes are completely independent instances, so changes in the sandbox will not affect the production environment, and vice versa. A sandbox instance is a tool that you can leverage to test new features or possible changes to your instance without affecting live production instance data. 

Use case:
  • Building and testing significant changes to the level structure, accounts, or formula
  • Developing and validating imports for a new integration

  • Archiving a clone of your production instance before making major structural changes

Sandbox Refreshes

A sandbox refresh is a re-clone of a production instance, so all changes previously made in the sandbox will be lost. After a refresh, the sandbox will be a replica of the production instance without transactions, import history , audit trail, and snapshot reports.

Request a Sandbox or Sandbox Refresh

You can submit a refresh request directly to the Account Provisioning team if you already have a sandbox and have refreshes available. The standard sandbox subscription comes with 2 refreshes per subscription year. If you have a multi-year contract, you can use refreshes from future years.

If you have used your allotted refreshes or would like to purchase a sandbox, please contact your Customer Success Manager directly or email

Refresh Availability

Refreshes are available Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM CT and can take between a few hours and 7 business days to complete. The completion time for a refresh will depend on the availability of our Account Provisioning team and the size of the instance being used for the refresh.  Multi-instance sandbox refreshes and sandboxes cloned from instances that are greater than 50 GB typically take longer to process.

Required Information

The Account Provisioning team will need to confirm all required information and receive approval from an Administrative user before starting or scheduling a refresh.​​​​​​

  1. Source Instance Code: The unique code of the instance you want copied to another instance. This instance will not be changed/overwritten.

  2. Instance Code to Refresh: The unique code of the instance you want to refresh. This instance will be overwritten/refreshed with a copy of the Source Instance.

    •  To find the unique code for each instance, go to Administration > General Setup > Code 

  3. Refresh date and/or time: If no date or time is provided, we will assume that the refresh can start at the earliest availability of our staff

  4. Administrative user who will receive credential​​​s: Credentials will need to be sent to an administrative user in the instance

Requests submitted by consultants, customer success managers, or non-admin users require written approval from a customer administrative user.

Submit a Refresh Request

You can use the Account Provisioning form in our Customer Support Ticket Portal to submit a refresh request. Click here to go directly to the form or use the steps below to access the ticket portal from the navigation menu in your instance.

  1. Go to Support > Submit a Request 
  2. For the Request Type, select Account Provisioning from the dropdown 
  3. For the Provisioning Category, select Sandbox Refresh

Swap Sandbox and Production Instances

In some cases, it is possible to swap your instances so that the current production instance becomes the sandbox and the current sandbox becomes the production instance. This could be an option if you want your sandbox changes copied to production, but you do not want to do a production refresh and lose the current production data.

Instance swaps are not possible if either the production or sandbox instance is connected to a Workday tenant.

Steps to swap instances:
  1. Log into the current production instance and change all of the logins from to something like
  2. Log into the sandbox instance and change all of the logins from to
  3. (Optional) You could log back into the original instance and change the logins from to if that domain is preferred.
  4. In each instance, go to Administration > General Setup and update the instance names accordingly.
  5. Contact the Account Provisioning team to let us know the change has been made so that we can update our internal records.

Copying Sandbox to Refresh Production 

Although not typical, there are some cases when a sandbox can be copied and used to refresh a production instance. Since the refresh uses an exact copy of the source instance (sandbox), any SAML SSO settings and users in the production instance would get overwritten with the SAML SSO settings and users from the sandbox as part of the process. For this type of refresh, it is the customer’s responsibility to capture any SAML settings prior to making this request. 

This type of refresh is not possible if either the production or sandbox instance is connected to a Workday tenant.