Transforming Our Administrative Information Systems

April 28, 2016

Members of the Rutgers Community:

In our 250th anniversary year, we take special pride in the history that has led to Rutgers’ standing as a distinguished research university. At the same time, we must address considerable gaps in our infrastructure to realize our aspiration to be recognized as among the finest research universities in America.

Transforming our administrative information systems is a foundational element of the University’s strategic plan. Adopting new business processes that support our mission efficiently and effectively, restructuring our organizations, and building best-in-class information technology systems will bring Rutgers in line with our framework for the future.

Consolidating our financial and administrative systems became a more urgent priority following the 2013 integration of nine units from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey into Rutgers. This work is an important step toward creating a unified identify and culture, standardizing practices, and improving collaboration across Rutgers University–Camden, Rutgers University–Newark, Rutgers University–New Brunswick, and Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences.

University Finance and Administration, under the leadership of Executive Vice President Michael Gower, has been leading the charge to implement new processes, organizational structures, and systems for all essential administrative functions. We will fundamentally change how we conduct business, becoming more effective, efficient, and responsive in order to strengthen our long-term performance and sustainability.

The major elements of the transformation, which will become fully operational on October 1, 2016, include:

  • Creating a redesigned chart of accounts and financial accounting environment to provide an integrated management and reporting infrastructure, aligned with the Responsibility Center Management budget model that was implemented last July.
  • Unifying more than 10,000 employees under one Human Resources and Payroll umbrella with the rest of Rutgers for a more consistent employee experience from hiring to retirement.
  • Re-engineering the framework for the procurement of goods and services, payment to vendors, and expense reimbursement for employees, therefore enabling more timely and efficient processing of transactions, lower risks, and smarter spending.

The magnitude and complexity of this unprecedented initiative bring inherent challenges, and achieving our goals will require highly focused leadership and teamwork.  Fortunately, we have a strong and expert team in place.  Project sponsors are Executive Vice President Gower and Michele Norin, Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer.  Project champions are:

  • Steve DiPaolo, University Controller
  • Vivian Fernández, Senior Vice President of Human Resources and Organizational Effectiveness
  • Terri Kinzy, Vice President of Research Administration
  • Maurice Paredes, Acting Executive Director of University Procurement Services

Just as important is your own commitment to ensure the success of these changes so that we can thrive through the October 2016 implementation and beyond as one Rutgers University. In the coming weeks you will begin to receive updates from the project’s leaders. I encourage you to take note of those communications to learn how the transformation will change the way we work and collaborate, as well as your role in the process.


Robert Barchi