Wesleyan University’s Integration Approach Streamlines its ERP Transition and Reduces Implementation Support Costs

Tambellini Group |


Wesleyan University arial campus
Estimated Reading Time: 3 minutes
Dave Baird
Vice President for Information Technology, Wesleyan University

Wesleyan University

Founded in 1831, Wesleyan University is a private liberal arts and sciences institution in Middletown, Connecticut, serving approximately 3,000 undergraduate and 200 graduate students. Wesleyan provides undergraduate, graduate, and PhD programs with more than 1,000 courses in 47 major and 32 minor fields of study. The University also offers targeted certificate programs. Wesleyan seeks to build a diverse, energetic community of students, faculty, and staff who think critically and creatively and value independence of mind and generosity of spirit. With Wesleyan’s 8:1 student-to-faculty ratio, faculty mentor students in a supportive environment, encouraging a multi-disciplinary approach to learning and exploration.

Wesleyan Assesses its Decentralized Integration Landscape Ahead of ERP Modernization

After leveraging its ERP system for approximately two decades, Wesleyan was ready to modernize its technology platform and began formally evaluating cloud-based ERP solutions around 2020. As they prepared for the transition, Wesleyan technology stakeholders also considered the University’s integration requirements.

Kevin Kane, director of enterprise systems at Wesleyan, described the University’s integration landscape as resembling the “Wild West” because each functional team handling finance, human resources, and student operations used its own technology instance, and each oversaw their respective integrations. The approach resulted in varied, decentralized integration techniques across the teams. As part of its ERP modernization, the Wesleyan Information Technology Services team needed to simplify its integration landscape to ensure information flowed seamlessly between the new and existing systems.

Wesleyan Technology Leaders Seek External Perspectives on Effective Modernization Approaches

Wesleyan University Vice President for Information Technology Dave Baird met monthly with the University’s Tambellini Group strategic advisor as part of Wesleyan’s Tambellini subscription. Other Wesleyan technology stakeholders often joined the strategic advisor calls with Baird, including Kane. During these calls, the Wesleyan technology leaders discussed their upcoming ERP modernization initiative and existing integration challenges with their Tambellini strategic advisor.

According to Baird, Wesleyan’s Tambellini strategic advisor recommended that the University leaders prioritize establishing an integration strategy and rebuilding their integrations before implementing new ERP technology, rather than waiting to address integration during the ERP implementation. Tambellini’s experience working with similar institutions had shown that when institutions simplified and centralized their integrations before core platform implementations, they created strong foundations for connecting their systems and data that minimized the complexity and disruption of the platform migration.

Wesleyan Develops Resilient Integration Strategy and Skillset

The Wesleyan technology leaders embraced their Tambellini strategic advisor’s guidance and selected and implemented a robust and user-friendly integration platform as a service (iPaaS) solution. They provided Wesleyan’s student system technology staff with time to learn and master the iPaaS solution ahead of the University’s ERP migration.

When it was time to begin the ERP transition, the University’s finance and human resources technology teams were able to focus on learning and configuring Wesleyan’s new cloud-native finance and human capital management (HCM) platform, while the student technology team built 35 of the 70 integrations Wesleyan required for phase one of its cloud finance and human capital management (HCM) platform launch.

Integration Self-Sufficiency Reduces ERP Implementation Support Costs

Baird and Kane say that the Wesleyan team has streamlined its ERP migration by leveraging Tambellini’s recommendation and addressing its required integrations early. Further, Wesleyan reduced its ERP implementation support costs by establishing a robust integration strategy and providing its technology team with the time and resources to become proficient integration specialists. The University is preparing to go live with its cloud-native finance and HCM systems in July 2024, and Wesleyan’s internal integration fluency will further support its upcoming student system implementation.

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Tambellini Group |
Tambellini Group is the leading independent technology research, analyst, and advisory firm dedicated exclusively to higher education. Tambellini Group members benefit from more than 100 annual and unbiased research reports that provide insight and analysis on the changing technology landscape. With nearly 5 million data points, including over 20,600 global institutions and more than 100,000 technology selections, the Tambellini Group’s proprietary Education Institution Technology Profile Database® is unparalleled in the industry. Founded in 2001, Tambellini Group is a woman-owned business and a certified Great Places to Work® company.

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