New Business Intelligence Tool Will Give UA Competitive Edge

New Business Intelligence Tool Will Give UA Competitive Edge

By University Information Technology Services
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When you think of a great university, what springs to mind? Dramatic discoveries in science or medicine? Exceptional faculty? Award-winning architecture and well-appointed classrooms? Clearly, these are all part of the picture, but if you take a peep behind the scenes, in almost every instance, you'll also find secure and efficient technology that keeps day-to-day operations running quickly and efficiently, technology that powers the highest levels of research administration and provides first-class business information.

The Mosaic Project will provide that very competitive edge for The University of Arizona. Aging administrative systems in five key areas – student, financials, human resources/payroll, research, and business intelligence – will be replaced over the next three years. (See last week's Lo Que Pasa article for more information about these systems.)

Oracle Enterprise Performance Management and the Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition Tool Suite, deemed tops in the field by many, have been selected to provide business intelligence. The new system, which is being phased in beginning this fall, is expected to be fully operational by next summer.

Exactly what is "business intelligence"? Typically, the term refers to the byproduct of collecting, integrating and analyzing myriad types of information to obtain historical, current and predictive views of business operations. The bottom line is vastly improved decision-making based upon solid data – a must-have, especially in the current economic climate.

According to Susan Richards, assistant department head for the UA department of chemistry and the implementation director for the Mosaic Project, integration is the key to success. Major information components will flow together, making UA operations on all levels faster, smarter and more competitive. "Not only will the systems talk to each other, they will speak the same language," she said. "The end result of having such a robust, integrated BI application will be that everyone from deans to administrators to office managers will be able to access the reports they need in a form that is easily understood and also easy to use."

With the Oracle Tool Suite, Richards believes University leaders will have everything they need to make thoughtful and informed decisions. Data related to the results and effectiveness of decisions will be accessible right away.

In order to ensure a smooth transition, stakeholders from every UA organizational area impacted by the transformation are involved in the Mosaic process. Further, like Richards, all of the implementation directors are internal to the UA, and maintain relationships with their "home" departments, in addition to their Mosaic responsibilities. Who better to know what is needed, what is working and what needs to be adjusted?

For a full list of project leaders, and up-to-date information on Mosaic project developments, visit the Mosaic Web site, where you can learn more about the project, ask questions and sign up to receive regular electronic updates.

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