Mosaic team enters build phase


On schedule and with five months before its launch date, Mosaic has officially started its build phase for the finance and research finance portions of McMaster’s new enterprise resource planning (ERP) system.  

On schedule and with five months before its launch date, Mosaic has officially started its build phase for the finance and research finance portions of McMaster’s new enterprise resource planning (ERP) system.

For the past nine months the finance and research finance teams have worked through a rigorous process first of defining requirements and business processes, evaluating needs and designing the new system. With that work now mostly completed, the team is forging ahead with the build phase of the project. This phase will see the team configure the PeopleSoft software, convert legacy data, perform multiple levels of testing. It is due to be completed mid-August after which the team will move into a test phase.

“This process brought together groups from across McMaster and built a new understanding of how our work inter-relates. As a result, the new system will be substantially more integrated and will help different departments and units to work together more effectively to support the research community,” said Anne McInnis, Mosaic’s research administration team lead.

“Having used our old finance systems for years, I’m excited by the new tools we are going to be providing the University. Incredible effort has been made by the December first Go-Live team. The team has also benefited from tremendous input by the McMaster community,” said Kathleen Blackwood, Mosaic’s finance team lead.

“I know the prospect of changing systems is daunting. Moving from a 35 year-old system to a modern system will be a big change, but once people go through the training and get six months of experience with PeopleSoft they will begin to see the benefits.”

What’s launching in December

Finance•General Ledger and Commitment Control

• Accounts Payables


•Accounts Receivable


•Project Costing

•Travel and Expense

Research Finance•Research Accounting

•Project Costing

•Research Financial Reporting

•Financial Tracking

•Accounts Receivable/Billing




 Budgeting and Planning (a.k.a. Hyperion)•Expense Planning*Hyperion will be used to budget for the 2015-2016 fiscal year

(A more detailed explanation of these areas is available on the Mosaic website.)


While the functional teams are busy building, the organizational change management team is working to ensure a smooth transition to the new system. The team is currently completing an impact assessment and starting to develop training materials. A training overview will be released this summer. A detailed training schedule will be released in September, and course registration will begin then. Training will start in mid-October and extend into December. The project’s goal is to provide people with training before they need to use the new system and to provide additional training support after the system launches. Based on feedback from the community, many courses will be offered as both web-based and classroom options.


The project is on track to meet most of the launch dates it set for itself in March 2013, including the December 2013 launch of finance and research finance. The one exception is the human resources portion which is shifting its first two launches by six weeks a piece. The first HR phase will now launch July 1, 2014 and the second phase in October 2014. The third phase will still launch in January 2015. This timing change was made to accommodate system build issues related to McMaster’s pension year, which begins every July 1.

About Mosaic

Mosaic is McMaster’s project to modernize its business and administrative processes and replace its current business systems with an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. Mosaic will replace the current systems used for student administration, finance, research administration, human resources, and business intelligence. Replacing all of these systems in one multi-year project provides a rare opportunity to modernize the University’s business processes. The new system will be launched in stages over the next two years.

For additional information about the project refer to the Mosaic website:

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