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In June 2012, the Steering Committee endorsed an entity-by-entity deployment approach. This will support successful business transformations in entities that currently have different starting points ("as-is" models) in terms of existing process flows, legacy systems and governance structures. Individual migration paths will be designed in such a way as to support the adoption of a new, common business model (the "to-be" model) to be used across the Secretariat globally.

The first release, the "Umoja Foundation", will lay the core building blocks of Umoja. Functionality will span the following areas: finance (funds management and financial accounting), supply chain (real estate, plant maintenance, logistics execution, and procurement), project management, and sales & distribution (third-party procurement services and billing). Umoja Foundation is essential to support IPSAS requirements.

The "Umoja Extensions", will provide all other functionality: human resources, travel, budget formulation, force planning, programme management, supply chain planning, warehouse management, conference and event management, full grants management, and commercial activities.

Figure 1. Umoja Implementation Schedule

The broad activities for each phase include the following:

  • Prepare: Project kick-off; site visits; recruiting full-time project team; selection of software, integration and other consulting service providers; securing project funding; documenting and validating "as-is" processes; undertaking high-level visioning for "to-be" processes.
  • Design: Project charter and business case; identify pain points, barriers and risks; identify process opportunities for standardization and harmonization; prepare and validate the "to-be" model; define roles; set-up stakeholder network; identify major change impacts; develop deployment and training plans; conduct fit-gap analysis.
  • Build: Build, test, assess, and refine the initial prototype. Demonstrate the prototype for the Project Sponsor, Steering Committee and key users. The accepted prototype is expanded and built to full production scale. The final product is tested and necessary interfaces are designed to ensure that the software works in concert with other systems. Training materials are developed.
  • Deploy: Execute timely and effective rollout in multiple phases, stabilizing the deployment at each phase. Provide training to end-users; provide "Go-live" support and maintenance.

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Scope of the Umoja Project

The main functionalities sought from Umoja are expected to encompass programme planning, budgeting, contributions and performance; human resource management and administration; payroll, including management of benefits and contribution to pension, medical and insurance schemes; supply chain management, including procurement; assets and facilities management; general accounting, travel and other administrative flows; reporting to management and stakeholders, and more.

Umoja will have the capability to support functions specific to peacekeeping operations in the area of logistics, transportation, fuel and rations systems and other requirements that are not common with other organizations of the United Nations system.