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Local Tech Wire

RALEIGH, N.C. — It’s not exactly news you’d expect to hear as basketball season gets under way, but North Carolina State University and UNC-Chapel Hill are suiting up to play on the same team – with their enterprise management software.

Both campuses use Oracle’s PeopleSoft software for their ERP systems – major administrative systems for student services, human resources, payroll and financial. The partnership will focus on the human resources and financial systems, N.C. State said in publicizing the plan.

N.C. State has used PeopleSoft for these functions for a decade and is upgrading to the latest version. UNC-Chapel Hill plans to use those PeopleSoft components.

The idea of playing together sounds somewhat like the stories about former high school teammates who find themselves on different college teams.

The collaboration grew from a previous one that Marc Hoit and Larry Conrad while in technology posts at separate Florida universities. Now, they hold the same title – vice chancellor for information technology and chief information officer – at the two North Carolina campuses that are determined sports rivals. Hoit is at N.C. State and Conrad at UNC-Chapel Hill.

They discussed possible joint PeopleSoft work last year as the economic downturn hit, Hoit’s school explained. Budget cuts made the opportunity for collaboration and saving money even more compelling.

The partnership aims to tap the most effective and efficient mix of sharing hardware, software, resources, business operations and vendor contracts to improve effectiveness and reduce costs for both universities. Both campuses are investing equal resources – equipment and staffing. The target date for both campuses to be up and running with the new systems in 2013.