MSU Denver


MSU Denver recently began a multiyear effort to replace Banner HR, Banner Financials, and several external systems with Workday HCM (Human Capital Management) and Workday Financials. Implementation of this state-of-the-art, cloud-based Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system will:

  • Transform how the University collects, manages, analyzes, and reports the data used to operate the University
  • Support all University Human Resources, Finance, Payroll, and Budgeting functions
  • Serve as a foundation for all other business operations on campus
  • Increase efficiency in HR and Financial offices
  • Provide the opportunity to reimagine and redesign existing business processes
  • Enhance the employee experience lifecycle

As part of this initiative, we will be redesigning numerous business processes, migrating data from Banner to Workday, performing extensive testing, migrating to Workday, and ultimately sunsetting several ancillary applications.


The goal of this initiative is to completely transform University business processes by implementing a modern, scalable, cloud-based Enterprise Resource Planning solution that will effectively support the MSU Denver community for decades to come.

What is Workday?

Watch this short video to learn more about Workday.


The primary benefits of implementing Workday at MSU Denver include:

  • Reliable, secure access to HR and Finance information from anywhere at anytime
  • Native mobility, accessibility, and inclusivity features
  • Improved data utilization and reporting
  • Frequent updates of system features and resources
  • More time spent by employees on meaningful work rather than administrative tasks

Student System Evaluation

University leadership is evaluating our Student Information System as well. Demonstrations took place in July and September, providing a look at specific functional areas of the system including student registration, degree auditing, transfer, reporting, and automation. Recordings of the demonstrations are available at:  

A cross-functional working group is preparing a recommended path forward. 


Workday timeline

This initiative will be broken into three main phases:

  1. In August 2021, Collaborative Solutions began working on a Strategy and Organizational Readiness engagement, which was completed in December 2021. During this phase, we finalized decisions around system architecture, data structures, and job duties. We also launched project governance, change management, and communications efforts at this time.
  2. The core implementation will launch in March 2022 and take 10-12 months to complete. We will leverage a project plan rooted in Workday’s Launch Methodology and branded by Collaborative Solutions as Xcelerate. Based on this timeline, we will plan to go live with both the Human Capital Management and Financials solutions in early 2023. This phase represents the most intensive period in the overall project and will require focused engagement from all stakeholder groups.
  3. Lastly, select follow-on functionality, including Advanced Compensation and Employee Learning, will be implemented in a subsequent phase. This effort will require lower engagement levels and will occur in parallel with post-go live support and minor system adjustments.


In 2019, MSU Denver engaged Campus Works LLC to perform an ERP Assessment. Over the course of one week, the Campus Works team met with over 100 Roadrunners to gauge the prevailing opinion of the Ellucian Banner environment and appetite for change, and to make a recommendation for MSU Denver’s future ERP system strategy. In summary, Campus Works determined that the present Banner implementation was no longer effectively meeting the needs of the campus and recommended that MSU Denver consider a reimplementation or replacement of the platform.

With this in mind, in early 2020, Human Resources and Information Technology Services launched an RFP for a replacement HRIS solution with a willingness to consider both “add-on” solutions and full replacement platforms. Following a thorough bid process, Workday HCM was selected. An evaluation of the Workday Financials platform followed, and the University ultimately opted to proceed with a combined HCM/Financial implementation, supported by Collaborative Solutions LLC as the awarded implementation partner.

Strategic Drivers

This initiative directly supports three of the five pillars in MSU Denver’s 2030 Strategic Plan:

Pillar III: Civic and Economic Catalyst

  • Through this project, MSU Denver has established itself as a technology leader among peer institutions statewide. To date, three institutions (Colorado School of Mines, University of Northern Colorado, and Colorado Mesa University) have signed a letter of intent indicating that they plan to collaborate with MSU Denver on ERP strategy. This letter was shared with several Colorado State legislators.

Pillar IV: Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

  • The Workday HCM platform includes several features designed to support diversity and belonging in the workplace. The VIBE (Value Inclusion, Belonging, and Equity) Central dashboard and VIBE Index, included at no additional cost, provide insight into an organization’s gaps in representation, leadership, hiring, and attrition.

Pillar V: Organizational Agility and Sustainability

  • Implementation of this solution will support staff members at all levels, providing an improved employee experience from application through retirement. By delivering a streamlined experience and automation of current manual workflows, this solution will help the Human Resources team transform their services from a transactional model to a business partner-focus.
  • Similarly, this solution will revitalize our aging financial systems, and empower the team members who have been supporting dated, manual processes to take a broader, proactive approach to account and budget management.
  • Lastly, we project that over the next ten years, this project will yield a positive ROI (estimated at $6-12 million) by both reducing existing operating costs and by obviating significant new investments which would otherwise be needed to deliver comparable results to the organization.