Information Technologies will see roughly $2 million cut from its budget next year, but no one is getting fired.
Instead, the department won’t hire replacements after full-time employees retire or quit. Temporary employees will take on their duties, a measure Chief Information Officer Gil Gonzales said should save IT $244,000 by next year.
“We have many folks who are interested in retiring, and we’ll be very careful in how we re-hire people,” he said. “What we will do is every time somebody leaves and takes another job at another University or out of the state, we may not replace that position.”
Central IT had more money cut from its budget than any other department.
IT will cut back on equipment, employee training other miscellaneous spending, all to save the department about $500,000, Gonzales said.
Gonzales said he was unsure what IT would do if fewer full-time employees than expected retire next year. Regardless, he said no positions would be cut.
“Reductions aren’t always about cutting something,” he said. “They’re also about reinventing the organization. They’re also about looking at what we do and making hard choices about what’s important.”
One of those tough choices will be the decision to offer fewer services to staff, faculty and students.
“Some things will be slowed down,” Gonzales said. “We won’t replace computers as timely as we would like to. We’re not going to install as much software on administrative units.”
Student computer pods will not see a reduction in services. Student fees are appropriated to help fund the computer pods in the SUB and other areas on campus.
“We’ve been approved for $200,000 in one-time fees to continue support for student labs,” Gonzales said. “So the labs are one area that we’re going to continue and even improve because the students have agreed that this is a priority.”
Students, faculty and staff should expect a cutback in services at the IT help desk.
Although IT saw the largest cuts, Gonzales reiterated that his department is an important component of UNM’s structure.
“Being fair isn’t always the first order of the day,” he said. “What we really try to do is make sure we’re aligning ourselves with the needs of the University.”