October 17, 2013
ePay Virtual CashierWhile on my initial campus and med center visits, I was on a quest to find the most innovative uses of IT across the UC. While visiting Merced in the fall, they brought me over to see the ePay system that has scaled with the growth of the campus. The system is used for collecting all kinds of payments: tuition, parking permits, library fines, etc. In the early days of the campus, UCM was collecting around $110,000 annually, just for student intent-to-register payments. As required by law, the cashier service was operated by two cashiers, who provide the necessary checks and balances. The campus grew, and many more types of fees were collected. Today, the ePay “virtual cashier” collects over $20M annually, and yet still is operated by a two-person team! That is what I call using technology to scale an operation. Think about the cost-effectiveness of the investment in scaling that revenue collection while not having to add any cost to the operation. This is the type of thing that lets CFOs sleep well at night. Hats off to the Merced team for showing the potential of technology to bend the cost structure.