May 2014

Table of Contents

Procurement Services

Travel Management Company Selected

Procurement Services is excited to announce that the RFP Evaluation Committee has unanimously selected Christopherson Business Travel to be VCU's new Travel Management Company. Christopherson is the 11th largest travel agency in the United States and is an affiliate of BCD Travel the world’s 3rd largest travel agency. Christopherson Business Travel’s headquarters is located in Salt Lake City, Utah with offices in Colorado, California, and Alabama.

The committee was comprised of department representatives from the Monroe Park and MCV campuses with multiple perspectives and business needs. Christopherson’s proposal and oral presentations demonstrated an exceptional suite of reporting and management tools that effectively manage travel spend, track policy compliance, and maintain duty of care.

Over the next few weeks you will hear more about Christopherson Business Travel and the services they will be providing.

This new partnership will allow VCU to:

  • Gain better visibility to travel and expense spending
  • Unify the travel and expense processes
  • Leverage buying power with vendors
  • Create a better travel and expense process for employees
  • Give travelers access to an online booking tool, Christopherson’s AirPortal®, and mobile device capabilities

Stay tuned for updates on the implementation process and campus-wide rollout! If you have any questions, please contact Sarah O’Neill at 828-5056 or email at sdoneill@vcu.edu.


Fiscal Year-End Processing

To facilitate payment this fiscal year, all invoices, revenue refund vouchers etc. must be submitted to Procurement Services by 4:30 p.m., on June 13. We will do our best to process all invoices that are delivered within this timeframe. Invoices received after cut-off will be processed as time permits. Payments of travel and personal reimbursements through Chrome River will continue to be processed daily.

Departments are responsible for monitoring their accounts to ensure that necessary payments have been processed. Receiving may be entered into Banner until 12 p.m., June 30 and if the invoice is posted and matches properly with the receiving, the expense should hit your index this fiscal year. Receiving should not be completed until July for any payments that are to be expensed in FY15.

Transaction approval authority for Banner Finance users will be removed at 4:00 pm on June 30. Inquiry access remains in place. Note: Journal entries must be approved for the entries to post in FY14.

All BOA Visa purchasing transactions posted from May 16 to June 13, 2014 will be posted in Banner this fiscal year provided the index code associated with the cardholder’s P-card is not frozen. All purchase transactions submitted to BOA Visa after June 13, 2014 will be paid next fiscal year.

Other deadline dates that affect FY14 processing:

June 24 is the last day to process changes to purchase orders in eVA.

June 26 is the last day to process purchase orders in eVA.

Questions regarding fiscal year-end processing:

Accounts Payable Jamie Holcomb 628-2877
eVa Patricia Shazer 828-5067
Purchasing Gary Gulliksen 828-0157
Travel Sarah O’Neill 828-5056
Corporate Card Services Lena Massie 828-3407
 

Corporate Card - Thelma Stockton Retirement

Ms. Thelma Stockton will be retiring from VCU June 1, 2014, after almost 38 years of service. Her commitment to service excellence is second to none and was apparent to each person who had the privilege of Thelma’s assistance. Procurement Services and VCU will lose a vast amount of institutional knowledge that simply cannot be replaced. Thelma’s last physical day here at VCU will be Friday, May 9.

Procurement Services will quickly seek to fill her vacated position. During this time, Sarah O’Neill will work as a back-up administrator to Lena Massie in the Corporate Card area. Please continue to utilize corpcard@vcu.edu for card applications, special requests and questions.


Account Codes: Event Hosting

In an effort to better track and analyze VCU's expenditures related to hosting events and conferences, the Office of Procurement Services created a new series of account codes and announced them in the April FA newsletter.

These codes are for the hosting of OFF-CAMPUS events, and should not be used for on campus events:

638059 Off-Campus Event Lodging
638058 Off-Campus Event Food/Meals
638084 Off-Campus Event Conference Space
638085 Off-Campus Event Alcohol
638086 Off-Campus Event A/V Equipment
638088 Off-Campus Event Furniture / Decor
638089 Off-Campus Event Staff Charges
638091 Off-Campus Event Parking
638094 Off-Campus Event Business Center

However, because there is a need for account codes related to on-campus events, two additional codes have been created for use when paying external vendors for services rendered during on-campus events. These new codes are:

638095 On-Campus Event Food/Meals
638353 On-Campus Event Alcohol

If you have any questions or would like additional information, please contact Nick Fetzer at nbfetzer@vcu.edu or 828-3409.


Procurement Services Classes

Procurement Services offers many different classroom and online training opportunities. A full list and brief description of each class can be found on the Procurement Services website under Training and Support Services. http://procurement.vcu.edu/i-want-to/receive-training/

To register for available classroom classes, go to http://training.vcu.edu/. Choose “Office of Procurement Services” under “Sponsor”. Select the appropriate class and follow the instructions to register. Please note: Registrants are encouraged to keep an eye on their e-mail in the week preceding a class. Low registration numbers will result in a class cancellation.

To access classes available on Blackboard, go to http://blackboard.vcu.edu/ using your VCU eID and password and click on the “Courses” tab in the top row. Search by the class title.


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Controller’s Office

Grants & Contracts Accounting/Effort Report Updates

Shavonda Gravely was selected for a new role in late March during a very competitive application process as the new G&C Gamma Team Leader. She has been employed in G&C since 2007 and we are glad to have her now as a key member of our leadership team.

Christine Tanner-Walker has accepted another position at VCU. Her last day employed with G&C will be on 5/9/2014. Gamma Team will continue to manage grants which are assigned to Christine. Inquiries may be emailed to the Gamma Team at gcagamma@vcu.edu. We congratulate Christine and will miss her!

The audit of Grants and Contracts Accounting by the VCU Office of Assurance Services for the FY14 period 07/01/13-02/28/14 is ongoing. If you receive a request from the audit team please work with them to provide the requested documentation as timely as possible in order that the audit may progress toward an expedited conclusion. They are aware that year-end is upon us and that we are all engaged with many responsibilities. Thanks for your continued assistance.


In Response to Your Question…

Question: Here's an example of an issue with a delay in receiving the next year (option year) project funding. The current year funding for this person ended 3/31/14, so this does present a problem. We can't very well just stop the work on the project until this is ironed out, but moving the funding over to another source would not be the right thing to do either. Do you have any suggestions?

Response: Thanks for the email. This is a situation where the timely completion and return by the department of the 90-Day Notice Memorandum is expected to assist the Principal Investigator with uninterrupted project performance pending the receipt or processing of an expected official agency award notice. Please return the 90-Day Notice to the G&C Accountant with Option #1 or #2 checked, and an alternate index. This will substantiate the G&C Accountant changing the necessary Banner dates so work and expenditures can continue to be paid. Since in this situation the award type is a fixed price contract with cumulative ongoing reporting/deliverables, verses budget year reporting, the same Banner Index must be used for the option year.


Effort Reporting and ECRT Updates

Effective in May 2014 all VCUQ employees will have their payroll included in the university ECRT system, and will be required to certify their performed effort each certification period based on their employee class. This new requirement will be effective with the summer semester which will include the pay period starting 5/10/2014. Any questions should be addressed to G&C Effort Reporting staff at effortreport@vcu.edu.

  • Your assistance is needed with the upcoming effort reporting deadlines:

    Quarterly certifications (period 12-10-13 to 03-09-14) are due by 06-14-14

    Semester certifications (period 12-25-13 to 05-09-14) are due by 08-14-14

    Semi-Annual certifications (period 12/10/13 to 06/09/14) are due by 10-21-14

    Quarterly certifications (period 09-10-13 to 12-09-13) were due by 03-14-14

    Semester certifications (period 08-10-13 to 12-24-13) were due by 03-21-14

    Semi-Annual certifications (period 06/10/13 to 12/09/13) were due by 04-21-14

  • Remember to conduct proactive reviews, communicate frequently with your faculty to verify the accuracy of their commitments, and to complete the processing of all ECRT cards assigned.

Other Effort Links:

ECRT URL: https://ecrtprod.asauxweb.vcu.edu/ecrt
Effort Reporting's website: http://www.controller.vcu.edu/grants/effort.htm
Helpful Tools: http://www.controller.vcu.edu/grants/ECRThelpfultools.html
FAQs: http://www.controller.vcu.edu/grants/ECRTfaq.html

Grants and Contracts Accounting/Effort Reporting extends our gratitude to you for all that you do to assist our office and to minimize non-compliance risks on sponsored programs at VCU. Please don’t hesitate to contact a G&C/Effort Reporting staff member if at any time you have questions that cannot be answered by content on the Controller/G&C website.


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ePrint Budget Reports

FGRBDSC and FGRODTA reports are now available on e~Print at https://eprint.asauxweb.vcu.edu/cgi-bin/eprint.cgi.

As you review the reports you may have questions concerning the data contained within them. Please briefly outline your questions on a Financial Inquiry and forward directly to the appropriate department via e-mail, fax, or campus mail. Remember that you can check the status of deposits or disbursements through the on-line inquiry screens.

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