Wisconsin State government currently has more than 120 different administrative systems across individual agencies to handle accounting, budget, human resources, payroll and procurement functions. In most instances, these systems are unable to communicate with each other – and they are fragmented, incompatible, inconsistent, incomplete and outdated.
Many of these systems are built on 20-30 year old technologies which need to be modernized. Some systems do not have a warranty, and others are no longer supported…or won’t be in the near future. For example, our COBOL payroll system was implemented in the mid-1980s, and most colleges do not teach the COBOL programming language as part of their regular curriculum. Our budget system was implemented in the 1960’s.
It is challenging to find programmers that are familiar with supporting these outdated systems or the computer language they are written in. These aging systems increase the state’s risk of system outages or failures, present cyber security risks, and the systems are not connected. Therefore, the State is unable to utilize analytics from a common database to drive business decisions.
These disconnected systems were identified in a 2005 Salvaggio, Teal & Associates (STA) ERP planning systems feasibility study. STA referred to more than 38 different HR and payroll systems, more than 59 financial management systems, and no enterprise procurement system to support the state’s administrative needs. The 2005 STA report said:
“The statewide systems used for financial management (WiSMART), position control (PMIS), payroll administration (Central Payroll System), and budget development (State Budget System) are not integrated. Considerable reconciling effort is spent to keep these systems synchronized. Additionally, the numerous “silos” of data and lack of integration across statewide systems inhibit the State’s ability to provide timely and accurate statewide reporting at the enterprise level.”
One efficient, transparent and modern enterprise-wide system will allow the State to better monitor and track spending, enhance human resource and procurement efforts, and allow agencies to better manage payroll and other administrative systems. Agencies will have real-time information to make better-informed business decisions, and will have the ability to produce data and information that can be shared with decision makers and the general public.
Project Vision and Goals
STAR Project Fact Sheet