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IRIS Project Memorandum

To: UK Faculty and Staff
From: President Lee T. Todd, Jr.
Date: October 08, 2003
Subject: Launch of ERP Project

For several months we have been gathering data and identifying resources in preparation of moving UK into a new generation of "Enterprise Resource Planning" or ERP. As many of you are very well aware, most of our operational administrative systems (FRS, HRS, and SIS) and processes are antiquated for a university of this size and scope. Aging, independent software programs and manual processes conduct everything from payroll to inventory to building management to student support systems and beyond. Very few of those operations are integrated with each other. This current environment does not provide adequate, timely or efficient tracking of our available resources. But that is about to change.

I have asked Dr. Phyllis Nash to lead a team that will launch and implement new core administrative information systems. I believe this effort is one of the most critical initiatives the university has undertaken in decades. Dr. Nash understands the processes and inner workings across campus that will be important in this ERP launch. She also has the management experience that will allow her to assemble a team that will impact literally every unit on this campus. With the use of our own internal design and implementation team UK will realize a cost savings of many millions of dollars. New modern systems will change and improve the way we work. Students, faculty, and staff will be able to use a Web browser to gain access to these new systems anywhere and anytime. We will become more efficient in a time when budgets are tight and accountability is vital.

This ERP project will be called "IRIS" for Integrated Resource Information Systems. ERP refers to a modern suite of integrated applications that provide real-time data to end users to support administrative processes, enhance decision making, and to meet the information demands of UK. Complete implementation and integration will take two to four years. Initially, Dr. Nash will be located in the Hardymon Building, but as the ERP team grows, a project headquarters will be established in a university building at 630 S. Broadway. This project will require the assistance and cooperation of hundreds of people across campus and I would ask that you make every effort to support this important endeavor.

I would also ask that you be patient as processes change. We will provide extensive training opportunities prior to the shifting of current procedures to help in the operational transition. A Web page dedicated to the IRIS project will help keep you aware of the team's progress and provide answers to process questions as we change the way we work. This page will be accessible through a link on the Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration's home page.

One additional note: As Dr. Nash shifts her responsibilities from my office to Director of the IRIS project, Dr. Doug Boyd, Associate Provost of International Affairs, will serve as Acting Chief of Staff in the President's Office.

Thank you in advance for your support as we work together to implement IRIS and continue to move the University of Kentucky forward.

(If you are a supervisor, please communicate this information to all of your staff, especially those without computer access.)