Budget and Finance Quarterly Email

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September 2014

Dear Colleagues,


You are receiving this message because you are part of the lsafinstaff@umich.edu group. This email group is used by the LSA Budget & Finance team to provide you with financialrelated news, updates, and occasional training announcements which we feel will be useful to all units. 


Enhancements to Concur - Available September 22nd


Procurement has noted that the input received from a variety Concur users across the University over the past several months was invaluable in the ongoing effort to improve the Concur user experience.  As a result, the following enhancements will be available to Concur users on September 22:


1)  Addition of a Second Default Approver (optional):  Users can save up to two default approvers in their profiles.

2)  Attendee Look Up:  A drop-down menu with employee names is available to help users complete the attendee portion of the expense report faster and more accurately.  The employee information   is imported from HR.

3)  Google Mileage Calculator:  Users can enter a starting and ending address to calculate mileage.  This is in addition to the mileage functionality already available in Concur so users now have two options to report mileage.

4)  Field Copy Changes:  It is no longer required to provide a business purpose at the Report Header field, so it’s not necessary for users to default the business purpose to all expense lines.  In addition, a copy feature for the Domestic/Foreign field is also available.               

5)  Field Updates by Approvers:  A number of fields in the Concur expense system can be updated by expense approvers, including date, department reference, and allocation.

6)  Saving Allocations as Favorites:  Users can save frequently used allocations as a favorite, so expense reports can be completed more quickly.


A number of resources such as job aids will be available about these enhancements when they go live on September 22.  If you would like to learn more about them, please follow this link. reading this fact sheet.  If you have any questions, please contact Carolyn Blankenship cblanken@umich.edu or your LSA Financial Analyst.


FY15 - Benefits as a Percentage of Salary Chart


The Benefits Office has made "The Benefits as a Percentage of Salary Chart" accessible online for Fiscal Year 15. You may download a copy (Microsoft Excel) of this report at http://benefits.umich.edu/enrollment/ucost.html

This report is updated and provided annually to assist you and your staff in budgeting the benefits component of total compensation for faculty and staff.  The FY15 report has been updated to include all rate changes occurring during the fiscal year.

If you have any questions about the chart, please email Brian Watson at brwatson@umich.edu. The Benefits Office welcomes suggestions for future changes in the information contained on the chart to make it more useful to you.


State of Michigan Minimum Wage Increase 9/1/14


As you may already know, the minimum wage increase for the State of Michigan will change the current minimum wage rate of $7.40 to $8.15 effective September 1, 2014.  Although September 1, 2014 is the effective date for the State, the University of Michigan effective date will be August 31, 2014 to align with the start of the biweekly pay period that contains September 1st.


For your information, here is the State of Michigan’s minimum wage increase schedule:


Effective Date            Min Hourly Wage Rate

September 1, 2014                $8.15

January 1, 2016                     $8.50

January 1, 2017                     $8.90

January 1, 2018                     $9.25


New Bus and Car Service Strategic Vendors

UM awarded strategic agreements, effective on July 1, 2014, for 2 bus service companies and 2 car service companies.  For bus service, Indian Trails and Trinity Transportation were added, and for car service, Golden Limo and MI Green Cab (taxi only) were added.  Attached is the PowerPoint presentation, "Focus Group Presentation - Transportation RFP - July 2014", with pricing and service descriptions for each company.  


Jeff Rabbit is the Contract Administrator and main point of contact for day to day questions and concerns. Suppliers will have webpages on Procurement’s website (www.finance.umich.edu/procurement).


Implementation of SPG 601.34


The University has specific policies addressing Minors as employees, research subjects, research laboratory visitor or volunteers, and patients.  SPG 601.34 is intended to support and complement existing policies and guidelines for Minors engaged in University-Sponsored Programs and on University property.


SPG 601.34:  Policy on Minors Involved in University-Sponsored Programs or Programs Held in University Facilities


Also, the University Record on June 2, 2014 announced the following website was available for departments to use as a resource for complying with the latest SPG (601.34) regarding minors on campus:  https://childrenoncampus.umich.edu/


Fraudulent Pcard Transactions

The University is hit with hundreds of fraudulent PCard transactions every year.  As a cardholder, you should regularly monitor transactions to ensure your PCard has not been fraudulently used.

Fraudulent charges

It is very important that the cardholder or the reconciler review P-Card charges frequently to ensure there are no fraudulent charges being charged to the P-Card account. If unauthorized charges appear, contact JP Morgan Chase customer service team at 1-800-270-7760 (within the U.S. or Canada) immediately.  Outside the U.S. please call 1-847-488-3748.  The P-Card vendor will close your current account and send a replacement card to your campus address. Contact the P-Card Group at 734-764-8212or purchcard@umich.edu to advise them as well.

Disputing charges

If the cardholder is unable to reach agreement with the merchant, please contact JP Morgan Chase customer service team at 1-800-270-7760 (within the U.S. or Canada). Outside the U.S. please call  1-847-488-3748.  Mark the transaction as “Fraudulent P-Card Transaction” in the Concur system.  The JP Morgan Chase customer service team must be notified of any disputed item within 60 days of the transaction date of the disputed item.

Student Registration Fee Increase

Effective Summer term 2014, a new mandatory fee is being assessed to the student account of every student registered each term.  The new fee is the, 'University Unions & Recreational Sports Facility Improvement Fee (USFIF)'.

The Central Student Government unanimously endorsed the assessment of this fee with support from the individual school and college governments as well as the general student body.   This fee is being assessed to repair, renovate, and improve student spaces in buildings that are heavily used by students for many purposes.  The USFIF was approved by the Regents at their April 2013 Regents meeting. The proceeds from this fee along with funding from other University sources are earmarked to upgrade the following campus facilities:

*Intramural Sports Building

*Central Campus Recreation Building

*North Campus Recreation Building

*Mitchell Field

*Michigan Union

*Pierpont Commons

The USFIF is charged to each registered student’s account with the description of:


The amount of this fee is as follows:

Full term (Fall, Winter, or Spring/Summer) $65.00

Half term (Spring or Summer) $32.50


M-Reports - Enhancements to Accounts Receivable Reports


New search functionality has been added for retrieving the Aging Summary and Statement of Receivables reports. You can now enter search criteria for any ChartField combination and retrieve the Aging Summary report and Statement Receivables report together. The new search criteria report is called, "Outstanding Receivables" and can be found in M-Reports from the 'Research' tab as well as the Fin. Mgmt tab under Projects.


Extended Sick Time Pay/Extended Leave for Employee's Paid from Sponsored Funds


The Charges related to Extended Sick Time Pay (staff and faculty) and Extended Leave (research fellows) are not allowable expenses on sponsored funds. The University maintains a central fund to cover these charges. (Note this is not applicable to individuals appointed to the Non-Instructional Sponsored Pool Account.)  The U-M Office of Research (UMOR) covers charges related to Extended Sick Time Pay for faculty and staff who have a paid appointment on sponsored activity (this was previously handled by ORSP). While now handled by UMOR, ORSP still provides the details, access to new forms, and supporting policies on our website located at:  http://orsp.umich.edu/funding/um_sources/extended_sick_leave.html


The Updates have been made to the "Extended Sick Time Pay/Extended Leave for Employee's Paid from Sponsored Funds" process, and were effective July 1, 2014.  An attachment is also included named  "Extended Sick Time-Leave-Final".


Facility & Room Rental Account Code Changes


Financial Operations has determined that it is important to track all residence hall room rental revenue activity in a standard fashion in our General Ledger.  Units which are currently using account 414930 for rental of a room in their buildings should change to the proper account 413450 or 414930 as detailed below.  Following are the current account codes and their short/long descriptions:


The short description is changed to "Facility and Room Rental"

The long description is changed to "To record the external revenue received from facility and room rentals."  


This includes items such as, but not limited to, Ballrooms, Conference and Meeting Rooms and Athletic Facilities as long as they are not subject to the regentally required surcharge for one-time or occasional rental of land/rooms/space in Auxiliary units.  For one-time use of space, in an Auxiliary unit only, see account 413590 (External Facility Rental Subject to Surcharge).  This excludes the rental of residence hall rooms (dorm rooms) in the University by students living on campus."


The short description is changed to "Residence Hall Room Revenue"

The long description is changed to "To record the external revenue received from for the rental of residence hall rooms (dorm rooms) and campus apartments in the University by students living on campus."


All units are encouraged to review the recent changes and contact Accounting Services Customer Service or your LSA Financial Analyst if you have any questions.  Changes in how your unit uses these accounts should be made for Fiscal year 2015.  These changes will ensure that both room rental for housing students and external room rental will be properly recorded in the general ledger.


Benefits Recharge Rate Increase


The Benefits Recharge Rate,also known as the Benefits Recharge Distribution(BRD), is a monthly fee assessed to University departments to fund retiree benefits and the operating of the Benefits Office.  The BRD is calculated on certain general ledger salary accounts that earn retiree benefits.


The University's Executive Vice Presidents have approved a benefits recharge rate of 2.05 percent of payroll for Fiscal Year 2015. This change represents an increase from the current fiscal year's rate of 1.95 percent of payroll. The rate is analyzed and adjusted annually to ensure that we adequately meet expense obligations for the programs funded by the benefits recharge pool,
such as retiree benefit programs including medical, prescription drugs, life insurance, dental and Medicare Part B premium reimbursements. Actively managing self-insured health plans and other
benefits programs has helped control the rate of increase.

For more information about the benefits recharge distribution and the general ledger accounts subject to benefits recharge, please visit
www.finops.umich.edu/reporting/brd or contact your LSA Financial Analyst.


Procurement Quick Reference Guides


Questions have surfaced regarding the ordering of hardware and software.  For easy reference, there are 2 guidelines attached. 


Service Unit Billing Template Update


The changes to the SUB template was referenced in the May 30, 2014 "Quarterly Budget & Finance Team News and Updates" email.  After testing, ITS found a few minor issues, and ITS updated and revised the new SUB template which is scheduled to begin formal use October 7, 2014.   Another communication will be sent out when the new template is available to be downloaded.


Please use the current template that is available at http://www.finance.umich.edu/finops/accounting/service_unit_billings until October 7, 2014.  


In the event you have a sub-system or program creating your SUB load file, please review the changes and ensure any programming changes are made and tested prior to the go-live date of October 7th, 2014. The new template is attached or it is can be accessed via the following link: http://www.mais.umich.edu/fin/subdoc.html.  All SUB files loaded into the system on or after October 7th, 2014 will have to use the new SUB template. If you have any questions about the changes please contact the FinOps Accounting Services Customer Service group at AccountingServicesCustomerService@umich.edu or please contact your LSA Financial Analyst.


The Budget and Finance Team


Please note: This email group (lsafinstaff) is open to any financial staff that would benefit from hearing about financial updates from LSA. To join this email group, please send Deb Boissoneau (lsafinstaff-requests@umich.edu) an email asking to be added to this list. If you are no longer in a financial role within LSA and wish to be removed, please send a request to lsafinstaff-requests@umich.edu.


These quarterly emails can also be found on the LSA Budget and Finance website under the News and Events section: http://www.lsa.umich.edu/facstaff/budgetandfinance/newsandevents/budgetandfinancequarterlyemail


Thank you,


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