A Plan for the Implementation of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) for the State of Texas
Under the recommended BCA 3:
- State agencies (with the exception of Health and Human Services and institutions of higher education) would migrate to a new statewide ERP platform operated by the Comptroller’s ASP service;
- Health and Human Services and institutions of higher education would operate as reporting hubs and interface directly into the Statewide Data Warehouse, and their transactional data would interface into the new ERP system;
- Existing statewide legacy administrative systems (USAS, USPS, SPA, HRIS, SPRS, TINS) would be replaced by the statewide ERP system that would provide all functionality identified in HB 3106;
- Each hub would be able to operate its own platform with the only restriction being that the hub reporting capability conforms to the statewide data standards required for statewide reporting; and
- The statewide ERP baseline code would be made available to every Hub for its use, if desired, and would be maintained according to the ERP vendor’s recommended schedule.
Our recommendation of BCA 3 is based upon the following reasons:
- It addresses HB 3106 requirements and the functionality required by the Comptroller’s Rider 16 regarding fleet management.
- It complies with the ERP Advisory Council’s guiding principle of “not throwing out what works” by leveraging the considerable work done to date by institutions of higher education and Health and Human Services in implementing their own ERP systems.
- The State will achieve business process standardization based on best practices, economies of scale and efficiency gains through the implementation of a single, unified platform for almost all state agencies while still allowing for the differences in the functional requirements of the hubs.
- It provides for significantly enhanced statewide reporting for both higher education and the state agencies, which will greatly facilitate a “single source of the truth” and taxpayer transparency.
- It eliminates the use of Social Security Numbers as the primary identifier in the statewide administrative systems, thus helping to reduce identity theft opportunities.
- It provides for compliance with Section 508 of the Americans with Disabilities Act regarding accessibility.
- It eliminates much of the fragmentation associated with the state’s existing administrative systems environment.
- Total project implementation costs are considerably less than the costs of implementing the alternative ERP scenario (BCA 2) presented by STA in their business case analysis.
- It is the model most often utilized by other states to meet their statewide administrative system needs, resulting in lower overall project risk.
- It eliminates proliferation of agency ERP and other administrative shadow systems, while allowing higher education to maintain its own ERP solutions that are integrated with other ERP functions such as patient care, student information, learning management and library systems.
- It provides a plan that allows the state to significantly upgrade the functionality and reporting capabilities of its statewide administrative systems and retire the legacy systems (USAS, SPRS, USPS, HRIS, SPA, TINS) over a period of seven years.
- It establishes a common language for reporting expenditures through use of commodity codes (NIGP) and focuses the use of Comptroller Object Codes on financial reporting (CAFR, GASB), thereby allowing for consistent reporting and better analysis of how the state’s money is spent.
- It provides for a statewide procurement system that will be fully-integrated with the financial accounting, asset management, and Inventory management modules, as well as the Online Ordering System currently in development by the Comptroller’s office.
- It provides for better tracking of the state’s assets, thus helping agencies and the Legislature in budget planning by identifying replacement costs and schedules.
- Hubs will gain the benefit of centralized reporting at the system or enterprise level through data warehouses that will be used to gather and normalize disparate institutional data to support effective statewide reporting goals.
- It allows for the hubs to consider ERP consolidations through an evolutionary process should their existing systems reach the end of their useful lives.
Recommended Deployment Approach
Only the state agencies (excluding Health and Human Services and institutions of higher education) would be deployed under this model. The participating agencies would be logically organized into deployment groups or waves. All functional modules would be deployed for all agencies within a specific group or wave. The first phase would include the development of a model that would become the “blueprint” for deploying all functionality among agencies. Deployment phases would be executed sequentially until all agencies have been deployed on the statewide ERP system.
For cost estimating purposes, STA and the Comptroller project team developed a detailed deployment schedule for State agencies under the hub model. The schedule was used solely for the purposes of developing STA estimates and the Comptroller has not made any decisions or plans regarding the deployment schedule should an actual ERP project be funded by the Legislature. Additionally, ITCHE members and HHSC representatives assisted in determining the years in which the Hub data warehouses would be placed into production.
In summary, although the costs associated with implementing ERP will be significant, the Advisory Council believes there is a compelling business case for the State to proceed with implementation of a new statewide ERP system.