TUSD considering buying $1.5 million in new software

2014-05-27T00:00:00Z 2014-06-18T16:04:07Z TUSD considering buying $1.5 million in new softwareBy Alexis Huicochea Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

The Tucson Unified School District is considering buying $1.5 million in software to replace the error-prone, paper-driven systems currently in place.

On Tuesday, the Governing Board will hear a recommendation to purchase software called Infinite Visions by Tyler Technologies — a program used by 90 percent of the school districts in Arizona, said TUSD Deputy Superintendent of Operations Yousef Awwad.

TUSD has for several years been seeking a solution that would automate many of the manual processes in human resources, payroll and benefits but has been unable to make anything work, mostly due to ineffective business practices that needed correcting before any software system could be put in place.

The recommendation comes a little less than a year after TUSD declared an earlier purchase of software that cost $10 million a “failed experiment.”

While details were limited about the new proposed program, according to a price quote, it appears that the module would address core accounting services, general fixed assets, warehouse services, human resource functions, grant and project tracking, receivables, state reporting requirements, personnel matters, benefits and a timecard interface, among other services.

Unlike the previous process that led to the purchase of the Lawson software, this time TUSD has taken steps that it hopes will make this process more successful, including conducting a needs assessment and streamlining various practices.

In addition to the first-year cost of $1.5 million, which includes implementation of the Infinite Visions system, TUSD expects a cost of $311,000 for subsequent years.

A recently conducted efficiency audit reiterated the need for a comprehensive automated system, noting that once the software is implemented, workloads will be reduced and TUSD could eliminate 16 finance positions, generating a savings of $2.4 million over five years.

Contact reporter Alexis Huicochea at ahuicochea@azstarnet.com or 573-4175. On Twitter @AlexisHuicochea

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