Audit identifies several errors in the bidding process for the UW project | Higher Education

UW-Madison students on campus in the Spring 2020 semester before COVID-19 moved classes online.


System auditors at the University of Wisconsin identified a series of missteps in the bidding process for an information technology project at UW-Madison, including two perceived conflicts of interest and several violations of state procurement policy.

Last year, UW-Madison was looking for a vendor to launch its administrative transformation program, a massive effort to move the school’s administrative services, such as payroll, to a cloud-based system.

The multi-year project, jointly sponsored by the university and the system, will ultimately benefit all UW campuses, but the work to set up and operate has been done primarily by UW-Madison employees until now, said university spokesman John Lucas.

In late February, UW-Madison canceled requests for all future deals just days before one of the losing vendors, Deloitte Consulting, alleged that two of its competitors, Huron and Accenture, helped craft part of the offer and were subsequently selected for approximately $800,000. contracts although Deloitte initially scored the highest.

The System’s Office of Internal Audit completed its review earlier this month. The office reports to the System President and the UW Board of Trustees, but has independent authority. The report, provided at the request of the Wisconsin State Journal, found no “direct evidence” of a conflict of interest, but observed instances of what officials described as potential conflicts of interest. These include a vendor who did “pre-planning work” before being selected for the bid and a UW-Madison employee who had previously had a relationship with one. providers.

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