25 March 2013

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Unveiling UMOJA’s ‘Countdown Clock’ to Start of Operation, Secretary-General Says

Single Repository with Reliable, Real-time Data will Harmonize UN’s Work

Following are UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s remarks to the Umoja 100 Days Event, in New York, 25 March:

It is my pleasure to join you.  I am delighted to see so many colleagues here.  Umoja is your project — and your support is vital.

We are at an important milestone.  In 100 days, Umoja becomes a reality.  On 1 July, we will go live with the pilot of Umoja Foundation in Lebanon at UNIFIL [United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon] and UNSCOL [Office of the United Nations Special Coordinator for Lebanon].  In October, we will deploy to all peacekeeping missions before rolling out successively across the Organization.  I thank Under-Secretary-General Ameerah Haq and the Department of Field Support for leading the charge.

Umoja is integral to my management reform agenda.  In our fast-changing world, the United Nations needs a new way of managing its resources to operate efficiently, meet Member States’ mandates and credibly report results.  Umoja is designed to help harmonize the way we work around the world, providing a single data repository with reliable, real-time information.

But, it is far more than an IT [Information Technology] project; it is an organizational transformation that will enable high-quality and cost-effective service delivery around the world.  At a time of growing financial pressure, Umoja will allow us to meet increasing demands, provide better controls and transparency, and empower staff members to make decisions more effectively.

As is common with any large change initiative, Umoja has experienced challenges along the way.  But, these challenges are being addressed with the hard work of the Umoja team, the commitment of Under-Secretary-General Yukio Takasu and Heads of Secretariat Departments and Offices, and the support of Member States.  I thank them for their efforts.

I have called on all our senior leaders to prioritize the transformation activities necessary for the Umoja implementation.  By 2016, the entire United Nations Secretariat will have transitioned to Umoja as its central administrative solution, leaving behind multiple and fragmented operating models.

And so, while the journey is yet complete, we take a moment today to mark progress and look forward to the achievements to come.  I am grateful to all of you for working to make Umoja a reality.  And I am now delighted to officially unveil the Umoja Countdown Clock.  Thank you.

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For information media • not an official record