October 2019

Published monthly, the Fiscal Administrators' News is where you can find the latest information regarding the Office of Procurement Services.

Table of Contents

Grants & Contracts Accounting

Topic Highlight: Online Training Opportunities

NCURA YouTube Tuesday has a variety of short training videos. This month, we will be highlighting the video below.

Cost Transfers: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=veNxusxhc9I&t=31s

OMEGA Awards (Director’s Memo 020-19)

On September 30, 2019, Virginia Department of Education released a memorandum providing guidance on a new requirement. A copy of the notice was sent to the departments impacted. For reference purposes, key points are identified below. If you have questions, please contact your assigned accountant. Thank you.

Per the Memorandum:

To ensure compliance, grantees are now required to indicate the following elements when submitting requests for reimbursement of payroll expenses:

•Description Field (required): must include the payroll cycle range, e.g. 9/10-24/2019, and general ledger (GL) posting date, e.g. 9/25/2019

•Payment Date (required): must include the actual payroll pay date, e.g. 10/1/2019. This date may not be earlier than the reimbursement request date (claim submission date) to ensure cash is not disbursed in advance of actual payroll pay dates.

Advance Index Request (Form And Work Space In RAMS-SPOT):

The University now has two ways in which the department may complete an Advance Index Request form. The Advance Index Request form can be completed via the link below or via the Work Space within the RAMS-SPOT. If using the Work Space within RAMS-SPOT, the departments will still need to print form to obtain signatures and to route it to G&C for processing.

At this time, the workspace in RAMS-SPOT does not automatically route the form due to signatures needs. Within Spot, the "Notification" tab will also display all of the individuals and/or areas who were recipients of the notice (if generated).

G&C would be happy to the index using the form generated by either method chosen by the department. Completed forms should be routed to the gcavcu@vcu.edu email address for processing. We appreciate your understanding and patience with the various ways in which this process can be completed.

Advance Index Request link: https://controller.vcu.edu/media/controller/uco-pdfs/pdfs/GCBannerNumberRequest.pdf

Grant Closeout- FPIOPOF (Banner Screen)

As a part of the closeout process, we request your assistance with pulling the FPIOPOF (Open Purchase Orders) screen in Banner to ensure all purchase orders are closed. This screen allows users to enter in the fund, org, and/or index number to retrieve a listing of open purchase orders. The data presented will include a listing of open purchase orders by number, vendor, commodity, commodity description, unit price, and etc. Departments can also export this information to Excel by selecting “Tools” in the upper right hand corner and then “Export” from the expanded list presented.
If there are open purchase orders, please provide the purchase order number to your assigned accountant. They will then work with Financial Reporting to resolve this for you.

Upcoming Semi-Annual Effort Period:

We are happy to report that the semiannual certification period, 12-10-18 to 06-09-19 will be released for certification on Monday, October 7. We appreciate your patience as we worked through addressing data needs. Special thank you to the VCUHS team, Effort Reporting, and the departments that assisted in this process. We appreciate your partnership and assistance with helping us to move forward. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Effort Reporting team at effortreport@vcu.edu. Thank you!

Current And Upcoming Effort Reporting Deadlines

The Semiannual Effort Period 12/10/18 - 6/9/19 is set to begin on October 7, 2019 and closes December 6, 2019.
The Quarterly Period 3/10/2019 to 6/9/2019 ends September 20, 2019.

Prior Certification Periods

The Quarterly Effort Period 12/10/18 to 03/09/19 has effort statements awaiting processing. Effort Reporting will reach out to the associated primary effort coordinators.
The Semi-Annual Effort Period (6/10/18 - 12/9/18) has effort statements awaiting processing. Effort Reporting will reach out to the associated primary effort coordinators.
The Spring Semester Effort Period (12/25/18 - 5/9/19) has effort statements awaiting processing. Effort Reporting will reach out to the associated primary effort coordinators.

On behalf of Grants, Contracts Accounting, and Effort Reporting, we appreciate your continued partnership and assistance. Thank you.

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Procurement Services

So You Want to Know . . . Who Should Sign This?

We often get the question: Can we sign this? Almost always, the answer is “No”. Here is why:

The Board of Visitors of VCU has the authority to approve the execution of agreements with outside entities that bind the university. The Board may also delegate that authority. If the Board did not delegate their authority to sign agreements, then the Board would have to sign all university agreements. Of course, we wouldn’t be able to get anything done if that was the case. Therefore, the Board has delegated authority to sign agreements to certain positions on campus.

Available at this link is the recently updated Delegation of Signatory Authority policy:


If you read through the policy, you will see that certain positions on campus are responsible for signing certain types of documents and agreements. Note, the authority is delegated to a certain position, not to an individual. For purchases in general, that is, contracts for the purchase of goods and services, the senior vice president and chief financial officer, and the director of procurement have been delegated to execute contracts. Others are not authorized to sign purchase agreements.

In sum, only those individuals authorized by the Board, or to whom signatory authority has been delegated in writing are permitted to sign an agreement on behalf of the university. If an individual signs an agreement when s/he is not authorized to sign, s/he may be personally liable for the agreement’s contents and obligations. We know no one wants that responsibility!

Any questions you have in regard to this university policy or other university policies may be directed to the department who owns the policy. Your Contracts Team is always here to answer questions, too!

National Veterans Small Business Week

Please join Procurement Services in celebrating National Veterans Small Business Week! This week, please consider using veteran-owned businesses to meet your procurement needs and support service members in the community. You can learn more about National Veterans Small Business Week link, or at https://www.sba.gov/national-veterans-small-business-week?utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery

VCU's FY2020 Annual SWaM Procurement Plan/Goals

Thank You for your part in helping VCU meet/exceed the FY2019 Goals! The below table reflects VCU's official FY2020 SWaM Procurement Plan Goals recommended by Procurement Services, approved by President Rao, and submitted in September to the Commonwealth of Virginia Department of Small Business & Supplier Diversity. The total goal has increased from 42% to 44%, however, the university will aggressively pursue increasing spend with minority and women small businesses to more closely align our spend with the diversity that VCU so proudly reflects in our student and faculty environments. Your assistance is requested to utilize SWaM vendors with every purchase within the small purchase threshold when possible.

DesignationsFY2019 Agency Goal (%)FY2019 Agency Actual Expenditures (%)Total FY2020 Projected Spend Agency
Goal (FY2020 goals need to be larger
than 1% (Percentage based on
Discretionary Budget)
MB 5.00 5.67 10
WB 5.00 5.74 10
Micro 1.00 0.00 1
SDV 1.00 0.00 1
SB 28.00 31.61 18
ESO 1.00 0.00 1
8A 1.00 0.00 1
EDWOSB 0.00 0.00 1
FSDV 0.00 0.00 1

In an effort to progressively accomplish the university's strategic goal of increasing spend with minority (10%) and women-owned small businesses (10%), Procurement Services will be increasing initiatives to educate departments that make purchases under the small purchase threshold to use SWaM firms that are interested in doing business with VCU instead of historically used vendors. Information will be forthcoming soon!

Procurement Services Performance Metrics Video

The Office of Procurement Services recently produced a video highlighting our team’s successes during fiscal year 2018. We hope this video will help to quantify some of our team’s work as we recognize their contributions to the larger VCU community.

You can view the video by clicking this link - https://vcu.mediaspace.kaltura.com/media/Procurement+Services+Team+Performance+
- or by visiting our website at procurement.vcu.edu and clicking the video link from the homepage.

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to us 804 828 5758.

Reminder About Gifts From Vendors

As we approach the holiday season, Procurement Services reminds departments that gifts should not be accepted from vendors. Often, vendors reach out to clients during the holiday season with proportional items intended to encourage business. These items often qualify as gifts, and may create the appearance of impropriety.

Because VCU is a state agency, its employees are expected to adhere to the same rules as state employees. If you receive a gift from a vendor, it should be politely refused and returned or, if that is not possible, distributed to the office it was delivered to.

The Office of Audit and Compliance Services hosts a letter that can be used as a template response to vendors who reach out with promotional items, Vendor Notice Regarding Gifts, and at the below full link:


2019 SWaMfest

SWAM Fest 2019 is scheduled for Wednesday, October 9 through Thursday, October 10 here in Richmond. Visit VASCUPP’s website for more information and register as an attendee at the below link:


FY20 P-Card Blackboard Training And Test – Deadline October 7th, 2019

The FY20 P-Card Blackboard Training and Test was launched the first week in September. All P-Card cardholders and approvers are required to complete the annual test to re-certify their compliance with the terms and conditions of the P-Card program. Failure to complete the test by the October 7 deadline will result in the suspension of cards and/or approval access.

If you are not enrolled, please contact CorpCard@vcu.edu. Please note: taking the classroom training, does not exempt you from the online test.

Winter Close Update 2019

The Office of Procurement Services will have their final check run for winter close on Tuesday, December 17. All invoices and necessary receiving will need to be completed prior to this date to ensure payment processing. There will be no other check run until we return on Monday, January 6th. Please be aware that the November 2019 issue of the Fiscal Administrators newsletter will include information and updates regarding the full winter closing schedule.

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