The City of Chicago has over 35,000 employees and 45 major departments, with an annual budget exceeding $8.5 billion. The Office of Budget and Management (OBM) is responsible for preparing and implementing a balanced annual budget for the City. In addition, OBM evaluates the efficiency of all the City’s operations and drives management reforms when needed. For more information, visit the OBM website.
The City previously employed a legacy budgeting system that was developed in-house. This system had been in use for 20 years, and was built on Oracle Forms 6, which stopped receiving support 15 years ago. The City was concerned about the platform and the risk of the tool crashing if another upgrade was pushed through the system.
Project challenges included:
- Dated budgeting tool and siloed budgeting processes
- Decentralized data across departments
- Inconsistent data management practices across departments
- Time-consuming, labor intensive and manual processes
- Users with limited exposure to multidimensional database
Over the past 10 years, several tools have been developed to enhance the budgeting process, while improving data validation and ad hoc analysis capabilities. In order to take advantage of these advanced tools, the City requested a new system that was compatible with some of the current technologies in the marketplace.
The City requested a Hyperion solution that could integrate with the following city systems:
- Oracle E-Business Suite Financial Application Modules
- Oracle E-Business Suite Human Resources module
- Oracle E-Business Suite Grants Accounting module
- Oracle E-Business Suite Advanced Procurement modules
Implementaion & Deployment
Clarity Partners leveraged our proven, flexible implementation methodology. We established the parameters for how the project would be conducted and managed. From requirements gathering to design, we identified and prioritized business and technical requirements for packaging into deliverables. Clarity developed a prototype that users could test and incorporated feedback into issue resolution.
The deployed solution includes:
- Oracle Hyperion Public Sector Planning & Budgeting (PSPB)
- Adobe InDesign for the City’s budget book production
- Integration of information from legacy Finance and HR systems to centralize metadata and budget data
- Customized analysis forms that improve data accuracy and completeness at both granular and summary levels
In addition to implementation, Clarity provided both Admin and End User Training.
- 100% elimination of all manual activities for decentralized budget processes
- Laid foundation to provide transparency on carryover balances
- Developed grant budget to enable the City to more accurately measure time and attendance entries, yielding efficient grant spending
- Provided more transparency into publicly consumed reporting
- Created automated process for personnel cost allocation to multiple funding sources
- Modernized technology platform to enable ad hoc analysis, data integration and enhanced end user experience
- Designed standardized hierarchical framework to improve reporting and analysis
- Substantially reduced data cleansing by automating data and metadata integration
Clarity will provide the City of Chicago with continued application support.