Chicago schools upgrade business software

Chicago Public Schools, the nation’s third largest school district and the second largest employer in Illinois, upgraded to Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1 to gain new functionality and enable the system to scale for future growth under extreme budgetary and staffing constraints.

By upgrading to 12.1, the Windy City public schools have been able to reduce the previous systems customizations with minor impact to its 6,000 users – from procurement clerks and budgeting teams to treasury users – in 700 departments. The district completed the implementation before the start of the school year, avoiding a delay of one year that would have been required if the implementation had taken longer.

“The new features will enable us to better manage our multi-billion dollar, 700-department business, including budgeting, procurement and capital construction," said Prasad Nettem, director for enterprise financial systems."In short, the Oracle solution is helping us get our arms around the business.“

In addition, Chicago Public Schools used Oracle Enterprise Application Documents for Oracle E-Business Suite to reduce the cost and time needed to process invoices, employee benefits and payroll paperwork. Users can process paper invoices and access invoice images more quickly to accelerate approvals. With a centralized location for all images, Chicago Public Schools has streamlined processes, while minimizing training, support and system maintenance requirements.

These and other Oracle solutions will allow Chicago Public Schools to streamline construction bidding, project management processes and tracking and management of more than $500 million capital annually. Additionally, the district will be better able to track warranties and maintenance for building equipment at more than 700 locations, enabling better preventative maintenance and a reduction in reactionary spending.

Finally, the district is deploying Oracle Business Intelligence Suite Enterprise Edition along with Oracle Business Applications for financials, procurement, projects and human resources. The district also plans to use Oracle Business Intelligence Suite Enterprise Edition as an enterprise reporting tool for its more than 40 applications and across all 700 departments. With the implementation, all users will be able to access a single data source and to create and run their own reports.