Announcement from the University of California:
In a press conference in Riverside on May 3rd, the University of California announced a move to save money by centralizing routine personnel services in Riverside.
The Inland Southern California city is celebrating the announcement, which will result in the addition of up to 600 knowledge-sector jobs.
The center, called UCPATH, will serve all 10 campuses of the university system in routine payroll, benefits, leave management and workforce administration.
The project, a key element of UC’s Working Smarter initiative, is part of an ambitious effort to convert the entire UC system to a single payroll and human resources system. Savings are expected to total as much as $100 million annually once it is fully deployed — and improve service to employees. Working Smarter, a system-wide administrative efficiencies effort developed to help preserve academic quality in the face of deep budget cuts from the state, accrued $157 million in new revenue and cost savings from a variety of operational changes in its first year.
“UC Riverside emerged as the best choice, particularly when we factored in our desire to attract UC staff,” said UC Executive Vice President Nathan Brostrom. “We hope to draw job applicants from across the University, but this central location will make it an especially convenient choice for staff at our four Southern California campuses.”
Brostrom said he and Peter Taylor, UC’s Chief Financial Officer, were also impressed by UC Riverside Chancellor Timothy P. White’s commitment to the project’s success.
“UCPATH is terrific economic news for Riverside certainly, but also speaks to the innovation of the UC system that holds promise to serve as a national model for other large public university systems,” said Chancellor White. “We are known for our smarts inside the classroom and laboratories, but we want to be just as smart in how we manage the world’s greatest public university. It is the most efficient way to manage the business side of what we do, and gives us confidence we are innovative and proper stewards of the public dollars that support us.”
Every $1 the California taxpayer invests in UC provides the foundational support that, supplemented by revenues from other sources, results in nearly $14 in overall economic output.
UCPATH stands for University of California Payroll, Academic personnel, Timekeeping and Human resources. The UCPath Center will open its doors in July 2013, initially serving five locations: UCLA, Ronald Reagan UCLA–Medical Center, UC Santa Cruz, UC Merced, and UC Office of the President. All other campuses and medical centers will make the transition by October 2014.
“The university is doing the right thing here,” said UC President Mark Yudof. “We are using the power of technology and of centralized services to streamline our costs and to give taxpayers the best possible return on investment.”
Six campuses put in a bid to host the shared service center. Land values, cost of living and availability of local talent all played into the decision.
Riverside, a city with a population of more than 300,000, is ranked as the 12th-largest city in California and the sixth largest city in Southern California. Riverside’s location positions it as one of Southern California’s major transportation hubs. The city is accessible via Interstate 215, and the 91 and 60 freeways.
“Riverside is a wonderful place to live and work. I am delighted to welcome the University of California Human Resources/Payroll Division and Shared Service Center and its 600 high-quality jobs to Riverside,” said Riverside Mayor Ron Loveridge.
The university is in negotiations for the UCPath office space, whose site has not been finalized.
“This is the type of economic development that will have a broad and lasting positive impact on the Inland region,” said Riverside County Supervisor Bob Buster. “The County of Riverside is very pleased to have been a part of this effort to bring so many new jobs to our region,” Buster added. “This announcement, along with the new School of Medicine, demonstrates UCR’s significant role in the economic resurgence of Riverside County and its ability to help us diversify and strengthen our regional job market.”
Once the UCPath Center is up and running, its executive director will report to Brostrom and Taylor. UC Riverside, however, will provide key infrastructure and management support for the facility. Many critical HR functions will remain at the campus level, including hiring and retention, performance management, employee and labor relations and other non-transactional business activities.
The impact on employees across the UC system will vary by function, department and location, Brostrom said. Most campuses and medical centers have only just begun the process of staff impact assessments.
“Our goal is to minimize involuntary layoffs through attrition, re-training and re-alignment of responsibilities,” Brostrom said. “To the extent that some employees are affected, we hope that they will consider applying for jobs at the UCPath Center. We want to provide job opportunities for as many of our people as we can.” UC staff will have priority for all UCPath Center jobs, other than a handful of top-level management positions that will be filled through a national search.
The center is expected to launch with roughly 140-160 employees, and will hire more people as campuses and medical centers transition into using its services. When fully deployed, it could employ as many as 500 to 600 people, depending on system configuration, business process design and other project related decisions.
Thursday, May 3, 2012
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