One U PeopleSoft Finance Transformation Project
The University of Utah is in the early stages of a multiyear project with two complementary and overlapping objectives: redesign the general ledger chart of accounts (COA), and reduce finance customizations in the U's instance of PeopleSoft.
For the duration of the project, there is a moratorium on new PeopleSoft customization requests except in cases of legislative or regulatory mandate, or with the permission of project executive sponsors.
Redesigning the COA will create a more efficient financial system to process transactions, support management reporting, and generate analytics. A central chart that is flexible and scalable will improve financial reporting for departments, colleges, schools, divisions, and business units, while still enabling external financial reporting. The COA subproject will also position the university to implement new enterprise resource planning (ERP) software.
Oracle has continued to develop the PeopleSoft product by adding functionality and making technical and system improvements. While the university's PeopleSoft implementation has been consistently updated technically, many functionality updates have not been adopted. This project includes researching, identifying, and recommending possible key improvements to leverage current up-to-date applications.
Many costly customizations have been made to PeopleSoft since the university implemented it as the institution's workforce management platform in the 1990s. Customizations are expensive and increase the time and effort required to implement upgrades and patches. Other changes, like reorganizing or adopting new ChartField accounts, are also more complex due to customizations.
For the duration of the project, there will be a moratorium on new PeopleSoft customization requests except in cases of legislative or regulatory mandate, or with the permission of project executive sponsors.
The overall project supports the university’s One U Strategy 2025 roadmap, specifically the theme "consolidate, develop and refresh technologies and centralize data and analytics to better serve our constituents."
Accomodating for growth: Facts and figures
University of Utah financial growth (data courtesy of Theresa Ashman, associate VP for FBS)
- The U employed 10,528 staff members and enrolled 27,668 students; in 2022, those numbers increased to 30,089 staff (+185%) and 34,424 students (+24%)
- Total revenue was $1.69B; in 2022, it was $6.86B (+304%)
- Total assets were $2.62B; in 2022, they were $9.83B (+275%)
- Endowment assets were $297M; in 2022, they were $1.36B (+142%)
- Research dollars were $242M; in 2022, they were $641M (+165%)
University of Utah Health operational growth (data courtesy of Karen Macon, controller for University Hospitals and Clinics)
- Approximately 19,004 patients were admitted to the U of U Health; in 2022, that number rose to 34,254 (+80%)
- U of U Health had 421 patient beds; as of 2022, it has 782 (+86%)
- ~417,000 patients visited U hospitals and clinics; in 2022, that number jumped to 1.48M (+355%)
Project update videos
In the following videos, Charlton Park, chief financial officer and chief analytics officer for the University of Utah Hospitals and Clinics, and Steve Hess, the University of Utah's chief information officer, give updates on the project in March and May 2022, respectively.
Project kickoff videos
In the following videos, Cathy Anderson, the U's chief financial officer; Charlton Park; and Gary Carter, director of Enterprise Resource Planning and product manager for Finance & Auxiliary in UIT's University Support Services, offer welcome remarks to the project team.
The primary focus will be on PeopleSoft Finance functionality, with in scope touchpoints that include payroll, payroll budgeting, and PeopleSoft HR (e.g., uBenefits and D-Jobs).
Applications considered out of scope include Human Capital Management (HCM) and Student applications, and third-party systems such as Jaggaer, Concur, and Lawson.
- Chart of accounts redesign: February FY2021 to July FY2023
- PeopleSoft optimization: February FY2021 to December FY2023
- Cathy Anderson, Chief Financial Officer, University of Utah
- Steve Hess, Chief Information Officer, University of Utah
- Mitzi Montoya, Sr. VP for Academic Affairs, University of Utah
- Charlton Park, Chief Financial Officer, University Hospitals and Clinics
- Theresa Ashman, Associate Vice President of Financial and Business Services, University
- Cynthia Best, Vice Dean of Finance and Administration, School of Medicine
- Karen Macon, Controller, University Hospitals and Clinics
- Ken Pink, Deputy Chief Information Officer, University of Utah
The advisory committee receives regular updates from the project leads, and provides guidance for project leads and executive sponsors. Members are charged with disseminating project updates to their home units, and gathering input to help leads in their decision-making.
- Rob Allen, Property Accounting
- Kris Arko, Hospital HR
- Becca Baggett, OBIA
- Jennifer Aoyagi Bangerter, College of Pharmacy
- Jerry Basford, Student Affairs
- Aaron Bell, Internal Medicine
- Brent Brown, Office of Sponsored Projects
- Kevin Cheney, Huntsman Cancer Institute
- Nate Dickson, U Faculty Information & Support
- Kirsten Dorius, Advancement
- Doug Finlinson, Health Plans Finance
- Janet Sue Graham, UtahPresents
- Sandy Hughes, Budget and Analysis
- Michael Kay, College of Engineering
- Josna Kotturappa, HR/Payroll
- Tony Millet, Natural History Museum of Utah
- Wendy Petersen, Human Resources
- Rochelle Randazzo, Facilities
- Jenn Reed, Auxiliary Services
- Clint Reid, Hospitals and Clinics
- Donna Roach, U of U Health Chief Information Officer
- Katelyn Thompson, Hospital HR
- Matt Thomson, Athletics
- Bryan Webster, Pathology Department
- Amanda White, Hospital HR
- Mark Winter, NHMU
- The Chart of Accounts team analyzes and makes recommendations for the redesign and future state of COA, considering the needs of all operations across the university. Team Lead: Steven Phillips.
- The PeopleSoft Finance team analyzes customizations and functionality, recommends changes, and evaluates opportunities to utilize native PeopleSoft functionality; and assesses touchpoints with HR/Payroll and Student applications. Team Lead: Gary Carter.
- The Data and Reporting team is instrumental in gathering, validating, and making data available for the purpose of new and improved PeopleSoft reports. They also assist project teams in discovering the impact of changes to reports and in the design and creation of the actual reports.
- GL/COA team
- Steven Phillips (team lead)
- Wei Hsiung
- Sandy Hughes
- Becky Schaefer
- Rachel Staheli
- PS Optimization team
- Gary Carter (team lead)
- John Alger
- Kevon Balls
- Doug Kenner
- Carl Larson
- Jason Moeller
- Val Olds
- James Steffen
- Data and Reporting Team
- Brian Harris (team lead)
- Becca Baggett
- Timothy Busch
- Candice Crawford
- Jessica Hanson
- Susan Schaefer
- Kristine VanAusdal
- Kip Williams
- Researcher’s Corner roundup, September 13, 2022
- One U PeopleSoft Finance Transformation Project update, @theU article, September 1, 2022
- One U PeopleSoft project update: The 'why' and where we are now, UIT Node 4 newsletter article, August 31, 2022
- Researcher's Corner roundup, April 10, 2022
- Phase 2 activities continue in sweeping finance system overhaul, @TheU article, April 4, 2022
- Phase 2 activities continue in sweeping finance system overhaul, UIT Node 4 newsletter article, March 30, 2022
- U community invited to comment on general ledger guiding principles, @TheU article, November 11, 2021
- U aims to eliminate 90% of its finance customizations, @TheU article, July 2, 2021
- U aims to eliminate 90% of its PeopleSoft finance modifications, UIT Node 4 newsletter article, June 30, 2021
- One U PeopleSoft Finance Transformation Project launches, @TheU article, May 26, 2021
One U PeopleSoft Finance Transformation Project, UIT Node 4 newsletter article, May 26, 2021