Financial Transformation Moves Forward
Last year, Georgia Tech announced its plans to work with Workday to implement a new cloud-based financial management system. Since then, the Financials Transformation project team has been hard at work gathering information to prepare for the implementation of the Workday solution.
This transition to Workday is expected to help Georgia Tech reduce its administrative burden by increasing effectiveness, efficiency, and productivity. With a more user-friendly interface, Workday is expected to provide a simplified and streamlined experience for submitting transactions and accessing information. In addition, improved reporting, self-service tools, and real-time status updates will more effectively support decision-making and planning.
The key to achieving these objectives is understanding the Institute’s campuswide requirements as the team designs and configures the new system. The project team consists of representatives from academic, research, and administrative units and is led by the Office of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) in collaboration with Accenture – a consulting firm. A phased approach is being used to support the Workday implementation:
Phase and Scheduled Start Date
- Plan: August 2017
- Architect: March 2018
- Configure and Prototype: July 2018
- Test: December 2018
- Deploy: May 2019
- Support: July 2019
These phases are iterative and will allow the team to refine, define, and fine-tune the application. The project team has recently completed the Plan phase which defined the scope and approach. It is currently working through the Architect phase, defining Workday's core data structures and setting the foundation for the new application. A series of business process design sessions are currently being conducted. As the team progresses through the Architect phase, more and more financial system users will be engaged to review plans and provide feedback to the team.
Building a solid foundation
At the heart of this new financial ecosystem is the Foundation Data Model (FDM) which will replace Georgia Tech's current Chart of Accounts. The new FDM will provide reporting features that currently do not exist within PeopleSoft. An advisory council has been created to assist the team with the design of the FDM. This team consists of Carol Gibson (Controller), Lisa Godfrey (Director - Budget Development & Capital Budgets), and Sandy Mason (Senior Director – Grants and Contracts Accounting).
The team is following a four-step process to design and build the FDM:
- Gather and Learn
- Analyze and Design
- Socialize and Refine
- Iterate and Test
They are currently focused on defining the FDM dimensions (e.g. funding source, account, class, etc.) and each dimension’s length; the first iteration should be completed by the end of the Architect phase. The team will begin campus outreach in the form of in-person discussions and website updates this coming July.
The Workday solution will impact more than 8,000 campus users and create the next financial system platform for the Institute. The team is excited to help develop a solution which effectively and efficiently supports our business needs across the enterprise and looks forward to engaging campus users in this process.