The University of Auckland is considering outsourcing its PeopleSoft staff as a way to retain them and keep them challenged.
The university has about 10 people skilled in implementing PeopleSoft’s enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, which the university uses to run its financials, human resources and online student enrolment system nDeva. Last year it completed the first phases of a major project by getting nDeva up and running in 18 months.
Director of student administration Kay Wills says the rollout of PeopleSoft is ongoing but retaining skilled ERP staff is an issue. “One of my biggest concerns is that now we’ve had a really successful project how do we keep the people?”
She says giving staff ongoing and interesting work through outsourcing them to other PeopleSoft sites is a concept being used in the US. “If other institutions use it [the outsourced service] they don’t have to re-invent the wheel. They could use the expertise we have and leverage off the fact that we’ve had a very successful implementation.”
Auckland University is now a PeopleSoft reference site and Wills says she is in correspondence with other organisations using the ERP suite around the world.
The final decision on outsourcing staff would be made by the vice chancellor. Carter Holt Harvey recently began outsourcing its SAP and IT staff under the Oxygen name.
The university is now in the second stage of its nDeva project — bringing online the recruitment and advancement modules. Recruitment captures people from the moment they begin contact with the university and advancement deals with graduates and alumni matters.
Coming up in 2003 will be an upgrade to PeopleSoft version 8. “It will be a totally web-based system so that eventually staff will use the web and not native panels,” says Wills.