July 21, 2022
To: All Operations staff
Cc: University Cabinet, Operations Leadership Forum
As previously announced, Yale University Operations has announced a multi-year Operations Strategy to help the university deliver its mission by improving our capability in three strategic pillars:
- Reinforce and resource Yale’s mission
- Build a more effective and efficient operating model
- Advance our reputation as a workplace of choice
Strengthening financial operations was announced as one of three key initiatives (“OneFinance”) supporting this strategy.
OneFinance is a key initiative in response to the “call to action” sent out last fall from Nancy Brown, the Dean of the School of Medicine (YSM), and Stephen Murphy, Vice President for Finance and Chief Financial Officer, which addressed the recent fraud in the Emergency Medicine department, its “egregious abuse of trust,” and the need to:
- strengthen our financial processes and internal controls
- clarify roles and responsibilities
- build feedback systems and loops that promote continuous improvement
- develop well-trained financial professionals
Success in this work will require close collaboration and partnership among central Finance, schools, and units across the campus working together as:
Under the sponsorship of Stephen Murphy, Arnim Dontes, Deputy Dean, YSM Finance and Administration, Shannon Smith, University Controller, and the leadership of Lisa Varni, Associate Controller-Financial Reporting, and Brian Rebeschi, Executive Director, Finance and Administration – YSM Business Operations, the OneFinance initiative is focused on realizing the following goals and benefits:
Several months ago, the university engaged its independent auditor to conduct an external assessment of the risks in the university’s current financial processes. Informed by the risk assessment and input from members of the Yale community, the OneFinance project team is working on identifying and prioritizing opportunities across financial operations, including procurement, payroll, accounting, financial reporting, grants administration, and other financial processes.
Over the coming months, the OneFinance team will keep you informed about progress, critical milestones, and what actions you may need to take. Progress on these multi-year initiatives will require engagement at all levels of the university community to:
- work together for a common purpose with a commitment to excellence
- act with integrity and accountability beyond ethical reproach as stewards of Yale’s culture, resources, and reputation
- model respectful behavior, creating a culture of trust where people feel encouraged to speak up, and the free exchange of ideas is welcomed and encouraged
- reaffirm the institutional and individual commitment by all faculty and staff to the Standards of Business Conduct
Success relies on each of us to identify and actively champion changes that reinforce the mission, solidify our reputation as a workplace of choice, and build an effective operating model. Thank you for your support as we work together to achieve the benefits of this important work in enabling Yale’s mission.
Please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or comments about this important initiative.