SUNFin
Welkom by Universiteit Stellenbosch
News



 

 

SUNFin celebrates second milestone and launches new website http://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=7026SUNFin celebrates second milestone and launches new website Finance<p>​​The SUNFin team have been working hard since April this year and at the end of November reached their second milestone of evaluating the first Iteration of Oracle Cloud Financials (OCF), the new cloud-based financial system to be implemented by January 2021.<br><br></p><p>Stellenbosch University (SU) is the first tertiary institution in South Africa to take a giant leap in adopting the OCF to replace the current financial system.<br><br></p><p>The interactive implementation methodology is on track after the recent successful completing of the Iteration 1 workshops. Currently the team focuses on the planning and preparation for Iteration 2 which will take place in the second quarter. <br><br></p><p>Iteration 1 is a prototype of the new OCF system. This first Iteration of the SUNFin system was based on SU's configuration decisions made during the Cloud Process Alignment (CPA) workshops earlier in the year and is populated with SU data. The objective of the Iteration 1 review workshops was a confirmation that the data and SU's configuration decisions by Visions, the implementation partner, was correctly interpreted and applied.<br><br></p><p>A series of roadshows are planned for early 2020 to give the current financial user a preview of the new system. Look out for the invitations to these roadshows.</p><p> </p><p>If you have any queries about SUNFin, please visit our new website <a href="/english/SUNFin/new-about">http://www.sun.ac.za/english/SUNFin/new-about</a>. If you have any further enquiries, please email us on <a href="mailto:sunfin@sun.ac.za">sunfin@sun.ac.za</a>. We would like to hear from you.<br></p><p><br></p>
SUNFin will adopt new financial systemhttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=6880SUNFin will adopt new financial systemMr Manie Lombard – Chief Director: Finance/ Mnr Manie Lombard – Hoofdirekteur: Finansies​<p>​​<br></p><p>Stellenbosch University (SU) is the first tertiary institution in South Africa to adopt the <em>Oracle Cloud Financials </em><em>Application</em> to replace our current financial system. </p><p>This new cloud-based system will enable SU to modernise our finance function by streamlining processes, increasing our productivity and improving our business decisions with access to real-time financial data and multi-dimensional analytics and reporting. </p><p>SU's decision to follow an 'adopt' approach versus an 'adapt' approach means that some of our financial business processes and transactions will change from the way we currently do them. </p><p>The Business Optimisation workstream, led by Annemi Murray and her team, are conducting End-to-End (E2E) workshops. The team has completed the review of the Procure-to-Pay, Assets, Cash & Treasury Management and Expenses business processes and are currently working through the Accounts Receivable (AR) business process. The objective of the E2E workshops is to identify how SU's current business processes will need to change in order to adopt the streamlined Oracle Cloud Financials' processes. Functional representatives from Finance, IT and Faculties are playing an essential role in these workshops.  </p><p>The next SUNFin Implementation Project milestone is the delivery of Iteration 1 by our implementation partner, Visions. Iteration 1 is a prototype (an early sample, model, or release of a product built to test a concept or process) of the new Oracle Cloud Financials system. This first Iteration of the SUNFin system is based on SU's configuration decisions made during the CPA workshops earlier in the year and is populated with SU data. The objective of the Iteration 1 review workshops is for Visions to walk the project team through this first release of the system and the core financial processes so that SU can validate configuration decisions. The Iteration 1 review workshops are currently in progress and will be completed by mid-November.</p><p>The SUNFin team will use the remainder of November to validate Iteration 1 and plan for the work required for Iteration 2. Iteration 2 is scheduled for delivery during the first quarter of 2020.  </p><p>During the preparation for Iteration 1, the SUNFin team identified several data cleansing initiatives which will be prioritised and addressed in preparation for Iteration 2. As part of this initiative the SUNFin team will implement new validation rules in the current financial system that will help prevent further data issues. </p><p>For more information on the SUNFin Implementation Project, please visit <a href="/sunfin">www.sun.ac.za/sunfin</a>.</p><p>Please email your questions, comments, concerns or suggestions regarding the SUNFin project to <a href="mailto:sunfin@sun.ac.za">sunfin@sun.ac.za</a>. </p><p><br></p><p><br></p>
SUNFin achieves its first milestone!http://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=6586SUNFin achieves its first milestone!Mr Manie Lombard – Chief Director: Finance/ Mnr Manie Lombard – Hoofdirekteur: Finansies<p>​​​The SUNFin Implementation Project achieved its first milestone with the completion of the Cloud Process Alignment (CPA) workshops in June. <br></p><p>The SUNFin project team, comprising representatives from Finance, Information Technology, HR, Faculty Management and Facilities Management obtained a good baseline understanding of how the new financial system will work and what changes we might need to make to our current business processes in order to implement the new system successfully. </p><p>One of the key outputs from the CPA workshops was a list of Actions & Decisions for both SU and Visions Consulting to address. The project team prioritised the work packages on the Actions & Decisions List required to prepare for configuration of Iteration 1 of the Oracle Cloud Financials application by Visions Consulting. Configuration of the system is scheduled to start towards the end of August 2019. </p><p>During July, the SUNFin project team mobilised a number of new workstreams that will focus on completing the work packages prioritised for Iteration 1.  These include: Business Optimisation; System Integration; Data Management; Training; Testing; and Reporting Requirements.  These workstream teams are representative of the faculties and relevant divisions within SU. </p><p>In August and September, the SUNFin workstreams will focus on the work required to deliver Iteration 1 of the SUNFin system containing SU data. In October the team will have the opportunity to review Iteration 1. Several Project Update sessions are being scheduled before the end of the year<em> </em>to provide an update on the project and an overview of Iteration 1 to a wider group of stakeholders. </p><p>For the remainder of 2019 the SUNFin team will work on streamlining Iteration 1, cleansing data and re-designing business processes to align to the new SUNFin system. </p><p>The configuration of Iteration 2 of the SUNFin system is planned to be delivered in February 2020. Iteration 2 will include a more complete version of the financial system, including some integrations with existing systems.  </p><p>For more information on the SUNFin Implementation Project, please visit <a href="/sunfin">www.sun.ac.za/sunfin</a>.</p><p>Please email any questions, comments or concerns you may have regarding the SUNFin project to <a href="mailto:sunfin@sun.ac.za">sunfin@sun.ac.za</a>. </p><p><br><br></p>
System Renewal Project concluded with contracts for cutting-edge systems for SUhttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=6385System Renewal Project concluded with contracts for cutting-edge systems for SUProf Ian Cloete/Corporate Communication​<p style="text-align:justify;">​​​With the recent signing of two software contracts the analysis, planning and procurement phases of Stellenbosch University's System Renewal Project (SRP) have now been concluded, paving the way for the implementation of two major systems for academic and financial administration respectively.  <br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">The SRP, that formed part of the broader ICT in Learning and Teaching Project, was spearheaded by a Steering Committee comprising staff members from across the University who refined the institution's requirements and evaluated competing products. The subsequent rigorous procurement process led to the appointment of two reputable vendors. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The contract for the SUNFin (Financial System) project was signed on Friday, 15 February 2019 with Oracle. Implementation of the system is planned to stretch over two financial periods. The SUNStudent (Student Information System) contract with SeroSoft was signed on 26 April 2019.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">“These two systems form the bedrock of our academic and financial administration and with the implementation of two cutting edge cloud-based systems we will not only replace the current systems, but unlock the opportunities offered by a new generation of information systems. These systems will have a deep impact on the University as they alter our processes and procedures in academic and financial administration, and even the organisation structure in our administrative divisions. While these changes will require careful and deliberate change management, they will help SU realise the potential efficiency gains offered by new generation information systems," said Prof Stan du Plessis, Chief Operating Officer (COO) of SU.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The SRP started as part of the broader ICT in Learning and Teaching Project, under the auspices of Prof Arnold Schoonwinkel, Vice-Rector: Teaching and Learning. The project was initiated with SU Council funding to replace two ageing information systems of the University namely the financial system and the student information system with SUNStudent and SUNFin. </p><ul><li>SUNStudent: This will be the Academia student information system provided by SeroSoft Solutions. This state-of-the-art student information system dealing with student administration, of which academic curricula and modules are important components, takes Stellenbosch University on its next step to digital transformation in education. The new system will replace the current, outdated system and promises to be solid and reliable, yet also flexible, modern and student-centric.  </li><li>SUNFin: Like the student information system, the University's financial system too has reached the end of its lifecycle and will be replaced with Oracle® Enterprise Resource Planning Cloud (Oracle ERP Cloud), which is a comprehensive, integrated and scalable financial management solution. </li></ul><p style="text-align:justify;">“SUNStudent and SUNFin will be implemented in parallel, and close attention will be paid to integration of the systems within the University's ecosystem of information systems and middleware. Together with the replacement of the ageing systems, the integration of data from the new and existing systems will provide the opportunity to track and manage our strategic metrics as well as support information governance initiatives," said Prof Hester Klopper, DVC for Strategy and Internationalisation.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">These contracts have been signed following the work of an SRP Steering Committee that was appointed to oversee the successful completion of the project. This committee was chaired by Prof Ian Cloete from the Division for Information Governance (formerly the Division for Institutional Research and Planning), with representatives from Information Technology, the Centre for Student Information System Support, Finance, Office of the Registrar, as well as Teaching and Learning.  </p><p style="text-align:justify;">“I want to thank our staff for their hard work on analysis and planning that went into the project till now—that enabled us to follow a rigorous procurement process for the new systems, where staff from across the university contributed to evaluating competing products and refining of SU's requirements. Renewal of these two important systems will provide further opportunities for digitalisation and integration of information, as well as streamlining of existing processes to improve effectiveness and efficiency. We rely on the support of our staff and students for successful system implementations, and will keep them informed on progress as system components are planned and rolled out," said Prof Cloete.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">At first the intention was to implement open source community software systems, to be developed in partnership with the Kuali Foundation and an international network of universities, but with the rapid improvements in competitive products, this decision was revised to procure both systems from reputable vendors. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">As part of the SRP, a separate subproject for Middleware, Infrastructure and Integration (MII) was completed as well. The MII provides an architectural layer common to all present and future information systems of the University. Its purpose is to create an integrated information ecosystem for master- and transactional data for all SU information systems, which enables standardised data integration and sharing across disparate systems. Its capabilities were first proved with the successful implementation in 2018 of the Facilities Management Project Phambili to introduce a new facilities management information system.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">During 2018, both the SUNFin and SUNStudent projects followed an extensive tender process which resulted in the appointment of two Rectorate approved vendors to replace the in-house existing systems. During the tender process stakeholders from across the University were involved in setting specifications and evaluating capabilities of various products, before the final choices were recommended. The new software solutions will provide modern up-to-date functions that were not possible with the older systems. The implementation projects will be reinforced by a comprehensive change management program, for which supplementary services have been procured.  </p><p style="text-align:justify;">New governance and project management structures have been set up for each system to oversee the implementation and integration of the software. Mr Manie Lombard (Chief Director: Finance) is chair of the new SUNFin Steering Committee, whereas Dr Ronel Retief (Registrar) chairs the new Steering Committee for SUNStudent. Further communication regarding these new structures will be distributed shortly. The expectation is that a feasible go-live date is 2021, taking into account the normal student and financial lifecycle activities and the availability of SU personnel. This process will include consultation sessions, regular communication and training of stakeholders across the University environment. In the long term the SU community can look forward to improved services with modern interfaces.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Any general enquiries regarding the Systems Renewal Project may be directed to the Office of the Senior Director: Division for Information Governance. Please contact Ms Tarien Jacobs (X3967) in this regard or send an email to <a href="mailto:jer@sun.ac.za">tarien@sun.ac.za</a>.  </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Enquiries regarding the <strong>implementation phase</strong> may be directed to the two new governance and project management structures. Further contact information will follow in the next round of communication.</p><p>​ </p><p><br></p>