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Colorado State University

Case Study: Using Kuali Financials to Build a Better Future


Colorado State University (CSU) in Fort Collins, Colorado, sits just miles away from Roosevelt National Forest. The university, home to 33,000 students, is known for its sustainable practices and world-renowned research. CSU is one of 115 Carnegie Doctoral Research Universities, whose spending averages over $300 million on research each year. The university strives to cultivate inclusion, sustainability, and leadership to improve the community, the state, and the world.
“From a functionality standpoint, after having [researched many] information systems . . . we felt we were putting a square peg in a round hole and when we started looking at Kuali, it certainly looked like a much better fit.”

Lynn Johnson
Vice President of University Operations, Colorado State University


For nearly four decades, CSU used an unsupported legacy vendor financials system running on a mainframe that occupied its own building on campus. CSU leadership had a mandate from the board to retire the mainframe and repurpose the building. CSU needed a new advanced financial management solution that fit its specific criteria and could grow with the institution—one that was designed to provide the flexibility that is necessary in higher education management. The institution also sought a system that could integrate with research software to support the school’s thriving research program.


CSU chose Kuali Financials to manage its financial operations. Kuali offered a flexible solution that was built specifically for higher education and could be tailored to the unique needs of the university. Kuali Financials was the smart answer CSU was looking for.

Kuali Financials helps improve process efficiency. For example, the workflow feature increases flexibility and makes it easy to route financial documents electronically through the approval chain and keep individuals informed.

Beyond the software benefits, CSU became part of something bigger: the Kuali community. CSU developed professional relationships with peers at other Kuali institutions to share best practices and address new functionality needs. Kuali Financials was the affordable system CSU was looking for with an implementation more seamless than any other enterprise system CSU had experienced in the past.
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