Strategic Partnerships

Strategic Partnerships


We, the staff of Information Technology, could not accomplish our goals without the strategic partnerships we hold around the University. Our teamwork and collaboration with colleagues across the institution makes Pepperdine a world-class university. Below are some IT projects that could not have been achieved without our partnerships with you.

CRM: The Graziadio School and GSEP were successfullly migrated to Salesforce

In October and November, the team at the Graduate School of Business and Management (GSBM), Graduate School of Education and Psychology (GSEP), and Pepperdine's Constituent Relationship Management (CRM) team worked closely together for months to ensure a smooth implementation and transition for both schools from Hobsons to Salesforce.

Salesforce is the University's chosen CRM business strategy aimed to enhance the student experience from recruitment to enrollment to graduation and beyond. It will also allow the University to have a clearer picture of leads, inquiries, and prospects from all schools.

Key benefits of an enterprise CRM solution:

  • Enhance the institution's recruitment efforts
  • Attract and retain the best students
  • Build meaningful community and enduring alumni loyalty
  • Provide dashboard reporting that fosters effective decision-making, and more

Thank you to the Graziado School team:

GSBM's team was comprised of Juan Mena, Michael Avery, Jane Tado, Kim Weiss, Alisa Lopez, Bobby Patsios, and Shimeka Bruton.

Thank you to the GSEP team:

GSEP's team included Marian Guirguis, Barbara Moore, Leslie Owens, Osvaldo Gomez, Ashish Regmi, Samantha Tarin, and Tammy Hong. The CRM team was comprised of Jonathan See, Lesbiz Tovar, Sean Fife, and Novita Rogers. During the next few months of the year, the CRM team made small tweaks to the system and resolved any small problems that arose.

Quick WIN for GSEP!

Congrats to Pepperdine's Graduate School of Education and Psychology for the quick win! Shortly after going live with TargetX Recruitment in mid November 2014, GSEP sent out a 30,000 email campaign to an Los Angeles Unified School District list that quickly generated over 600 inquiries, packed information sessions and two admissions applications (and counting). Kudos to the GSEP Recruitment Team!

Seaver, GSEP, and GSBM recruitment are now all on one system: Salesforce. During the next few months, the CRM team will be making small tweaks to the system and resolving any small problems they may encounter.

To learn more about CRM or the "Engaging Waves" initiative, please visit: Or subscribe to The Engaging Waves Blog, which can be found at

IT Celebrates 10-year major milestone for PeopleSoft

PeopleSoft, is sometimes referred to as the University's "brain" where important data such as finance, human resources, and student information is safely stored. The system handles much of the administrative business processes for the University so that Pepperdine faculty and staff can focus more on assisting our students to pursue lives full of purpose, service, and leadership. To celebrate this major milestone achievement, IT released a report PeopleSoft 10-year Milestone Achievement: A review of a strategic institutional collaboration effort & the future of PeopleSoft at Pepperdine University. This report celebrates the dedicated hard work and exceptional teamwork University leaders and their staff have contributed and continue to contribute throughout the years.

Read the report by visiting: 10 Year Achievement 

PTD report determines athlete's academic eligibility

The Progress Toward Degree (PTD) report is a vital component in calculating NCAA Academic Eligibility for student athletes. PTD looks at actual progress toward a degree based on required general education courses and the student's declared major with allotted units for electives. This is separate and distinctive from the University's standard degree audit report, and per NCAA rules and regulations, not every course that has been completed is counted in calculating the percentage for PTD.

Previously, the Registrar's Office manually reviewed and created these reports for every athlete each term, averaging four to five hours for one person to calculate the PTD for each of the 17 athletic teams. Enterprise Information Systems (EIS) Student Administration began working with the Registrar's Office in January 2013 to automate the creation of these reports in PeopleSoft based on the NCAA guidelines and using the enrollment data already in PeopleSoft.

The project went into production at the end of March 2014, after several hundred hours of analysis, development, and testing. An automated, system-generated report eliminates potential errors in reporting that could place the team and/or the University out of compliance, and it saves the Registrar's Office an estimated 85 hours each term.

"The PTD report allows me to run reports for all athletes or by team – in a matter of minutes. [PTD] takes into consideration current enrollment, so it accurately reflects units needed for each of the areas," said Lesbiz Tovar, associate registrar for Academic Records.

Online invoicing system streamlines procurement process

Finance in collaboration with IT's Senior Lead Developer and Finance Lead Hector Ramirez, worked to develop an interface between ADP's Electronic Invoicing System and PeopleSoft Financials. The interface between these two systems allows Finance to better manage the procurement processes at Pepperdine.

Prior to the implementation, external vendors would send invoices via mail to Finance. Finance staff would then send the invoices to each of the departments to be reviewed and approved for payment. This outdated method could not keep up with the sheer volume of invoices needed to be processed on a daily bases. Now, purchase orders are electronically posted to ADP's system from PeopleSoft Financials. Invoices are created in ADP and then routed to departments to be reviewed and approved for payment. Approved invoices are then imported back to PeopleSoft Financials for payment processing.

This project was made possible by the latest PeopleSoft tools upgrade. The University can expect more efficiency projects like these to be implemented in the near future.

"I am personally excited to have the chance to explore the possibilities these technologies can bring to Pepperdine's systems," commented Hector. "It is always exciting to work on improving business processes. However, it doesn't beat making my colleagues' jobs more efficient and enjoyable."

EIS Team helps Seaver College implement a new financial aid process

In January, Seaver College began utilizing the firm Maguire Associates for their predictive financial aid awarding services with the incoming fall 2014 students. This change allows financial aid funds to be used more strategically while continuing to attract exceptional students and increase enrollment rates.

Implementing these major changes for the upcoming aid year required extensive collaboration among the EIS PeopleSoft Student, the Seaver Financial Aid, Seaver Admissions and IT's Application Development teams.

Strategic revisions were made to Seaver's financial aid packaging plans, equations, and reports. A new process was written within PeopleSoft to import the data files from the Maguire firm; and a new application was created to integrate TargetX (Seaver's recruitment tool) data with People- Soft data.

With the hard work and cooperation of all groups to streamline new business processes, Seaver successfully sent out admission letters and financial aid award letters on schedule to their new fall 2014 admitted students.

Business Intelligence launches University Analytics for Pepperdine Leadership

On June 3, 2014, Pepperdine's Business Intelligence (BI) department launched University Analytics, an online dashboard and reporting tool, which allows University executive leadership an easily accessible view of Pepperdine data (e.g. enrollment, admissions, and financial aid) in order to support better decision making.

Currently, University Analytics allows the deans and provost the ability to view interactive reports on Pepperdine admissions; providing over 60 ways to drill down into Pepperdine data e.g., ethnicity, gender, and home location.

The data is directly pulled from the PeopleSoft student administration system. The BI group, Novita Rogers, Henry Lai, Tom Layman, and Ory de la Rosa and Server Engineering's Brian Aasen and Ken Noone worked together to get this robust application up and running in a very short time.

The next two phases of this application will include incorporating Pepperdine records and enrollment data and financial aid data respectively. 

Pepperdine faculty help IT choose new Adobe Connect

In summer 2014, Pepperdine University selected Adobe Connect as its web conferencing platform for teaching and learning. The original web conferencing pilot began October 2013 with accounts available for interested professors in fall 2013 and spring 2014. A number of accounts were made available to the community for evaluating this web conferencing solution. Overall, feedback clearly identified Adobe Connect as the preferred platform for professors to conduct online classes and office hours.

"I have tried Fuze, Google Hangout, Bb Collaborate and other tools, but find [Adobe Connect] to be significantly better in functionality, ease-of-use, and the potential for high-end engagement with students and stakeholders," said Dr. Charla Griffy-Brown, who teaches at the Graziadio School of Business.

Adobe Connect can be used as a virtual classroom environment offering powerful tools and layouts to facilitate teaching and learning online. Connect allows professors to accomplish many things including:

  • Conduct and record lectures online
  • Bring remotely-located guest speakers into a classroom environment
  • Enable online office hours
  • Empower faculty collaboration and meetings

Adobe Connect was selected to support teaching at Pepperdine University. A set number of licenses will be provided to each school based on the number of online and blended instructors. Schools will be able to purchase additional licenses as needed. Professors interested in an Adobe Connect license should contact the appropriate support representative for their school.

To learn more, please visit Adobe Connect Web Conferencing