Skip to main content

Administrative Systems

Administrative Systems owns, manages, and develops enterprise systems to support the business of Northwestern University. These enterprise systems are primarily utilized by students, faculty and staff to support the completion of core business capabilities. The scope of services provided by Administrative Systems is provided in the Northwestern Business Capabilities.

Kris O'Brien

Associate Vice President


Our mission is to enrich the Northwestern community experience with innovative technology solutions that transform Administrative Systems, driving effectiveness, efficiency, and flexibility through partnerships, knowledge, and understanding of Northwestern University priorities.

Administrative Systems Guiding Principles

  • Provide a high level of customer service focused on meeting business needs and commitments.
  • Strengthen relationships with business partners and other IT teams through collaboration, analysis, project delivery, and technology advancement.
  • Maintain an agreement based planning process with our stakeholders.
  • Make work visible and understandable to the teams and our business partners.
  • Ensure production services are effective, efficient, reliable, flexible, and secure.
  • Drive standardization on common enterprise platforms, processes, and governance (with agreed to functional variations).
  • Reuse and extend before buy, apply delivered rather than customize, buy before build.
  • Define, collect, integrate and report information consistently.
  • Embrace a culture of continuous improvement and innovation focused on flexibility, agility, delivery, quality, and consistency.
  • Develop, retain, and attract world-class IT talent.

Reporting to the Associate Vice President of Administrative Systems, areas within Administrative Systems include:

Application Development and Operations

Kris O'Brien

Associate Vice President


The Application Development and Operations (ADO) team develops and runs software solutions that serve the University’s administrative needs. The team supports the software services that enable everyone in the campus community to perform their daily work. From student, faculty, staff, and alumni systems to financial, facilities, and research administration systems, and more, ADO provides the programming resources that ensure the University’s administrative services run effectively and efficiently.

Data Management and Analytics

Alan Garbarino



The Data Management and Analytics (DMA) team supports the growing demand from our users for a more holistic and multidisciplinary view of University data by providing a common platform for integration services, developing shared repositories, creating common data elements, and offering multiple channels to access data.

Enterprise Systems Alumni and Financials

Andrew Ludington



The Enterprise Systems Alumni and Financials (ESAF) team supports and enhances a portfolio of technology solutions that facilitate the business functions of Alumni Relations and Development, Budget and Planning, Financial Operations, Research Administration, and Facilities. Working in collaboration with other Administrative Systems teams and technical and business units across the University, ESAF develops and supports technology as an enabler of strategic goals. Systems included in the portfolio include NUFinancials, Facilities Connect, CATracks, InfoEd, The Research Portal, NUPlans and iBuyNU.

Enterprise Systems Human Resources and Student

Allison Porterfield-Woods



The Enterprise Systems Human Resources and Student (ESHRS) team provides services to the University community to enable and maintain systems associated with the hire-to-retire business processes, as well as student-related data and applications. Our system capabilities include, but are not limited to, payroll, benefits, recruiting, compensation, learning and organization development, and timekeeping for Human Resources, as well as CAESAR for Student.

Office of Portfolio Management

Amy Engstler

Associate Director


The Office of Portfolio Management (OPM) team serves as an integrating point for the University's administrative systems activities, pulling together projects that span business units and providing effective service to those interacting with the enterprise systems groups. The team is responsible for planning and coordinating across the existing project and support teams, conducting business analyses for new initiatives, and serving as a coordinating point of multi-system projects. Other functions of the OPM include system training and collaboration with our support functions to understand how our systems and business processes might be adjusted to meet the needs of the community better.

More about the Office of Portfolio Management

Back to top