The UC Office of the President announced last week that the University will combine payroll services, human resources and other administrative transactions into a single shared service at UC Riverside beginning July 2013.

The UCPath Center — part of the Working Smarter Initiative launched in July 2010 to cut costs through more efficiently run administrative services — will process transactions involving workforce administration, payroll, leave management and other managerial services for the 10 UC campuses and five medical centers. The initiative aims to decrease university expenses without affecting academic quality and created over $157 million in savings and new revenue as of July 2011.

The center will initially serve the UC Office of the President, UCLA Medical Center, UCLA, UC Santa Cruz and UC Merced and plans to serve the remaining UC institutions by October 2014.

In a UCOP press release, UC Chief Financial Officer Peter Taylor said university officials expect the center to pay off its own costs within five years of operating and save $100 million by its eighth year.

Although six other campuses offered to host the center, UC Executive Vice President of Business Operations Nathan Brostrom said UC Riverside holds the most central location and largest pool of resources and potential staff, according to a UCOP press release.

Academic and finance personnel as well as human resources and medical center staffs have organized the center’s key functions and operations since November and estimate its starting staff to total 140 to 160 employees. The facility is expected to employ as many as 600 staff members once it is fully launched.

Although the University expects a decrease in human resources positions regarding transactional processes the center provides, such variations will depend on the involved locations and departments.

Individual campuses will continue providing non-transactional business operations — including labor relations — as well as hiring and retention, among other services.