FAQ CoA Phase 2
1. What is the vision for the Chart of Accounts Phase 2 changes?
Based on feedback we received in 2019 related to the challenges with the current CoA structure we are repurposing certain segments of the chart of accounts. The vision for this project is to design a simple, efficient, and enduring chart of accounts that aligns with the organizational structure and addresses the business needs of the users.
2. What benefits are to be gained from the CoA Phase 2?
Several benefits will be gained from this phase of work including, but not limited to:
- Streamlined Department segment with values that will be used consistently across financial, human resource, student, and space management systems so that Department represents the actual organizational structure of the university
- More consistent and robust financial reporting across the university
- Enhanced transaction management and tracking capability
- Simplified and standardized project accounting
We expect other benefits will be identified as the project progresses.
3. How will the CoA Phase 2 structure change?
The total number of segments and character count of each segment in the CoA will not change, however some of the segments will be repurposed. The image below is a crosswalk from the current CoA to the proposed new CoA; the four repurposed segments are highlighted in yellow. Five segments will have no university wide, material changes. The Location segment most likely will change to Future Use and will be captured through other segments such as Department or Program. For further details, please refer the micro-learnings available on the chart of accounts website.
4. Will there be more phases after this one?
We do not expect to have another CoA redesign after this phase as its goal is to make the CoA long-lasting and enduring. However, we are reserving two segments for future use so that we have flexibility to make changes that may arise for future university needs.
5. How will historical data be available to end users? How will it be managed and maintained? Will there be extreme differences in the numerical patterns in the segments?
Decisions regarding historical data and where it will be stored have not been made at this point. We will work together to reach a decision on the appropriate amount of history to convert.
Decisions regarding the numerical patterns in the segments have also not been made and will be discussed during the design sessions.
6. What is the implementation timeline for CoA Phase 2?
The tentative timeline is to roll out the new design over the course of the coming years. It is a two to three–year project and there are many factors and dependencies. Currently, we are focused on a four to six–month, short-term timeline. This includes stakeholder interviews, design meeting workshops, and HCM project alignment. We want to ensure that we invest the time and engage with stakeholders to design a CoA that meets the collective needs for Rutgers, at both the macro and micro levels.
7. How will I be notified regarding updates to the CoA Phase 2 project?
As a part of our communications strategy, we are partnering with the Chief Business Officer (CBO) – and Chief Financial Officer (CFO)–designated contacts to communicate with the university’s financial community. We ask that you discuss your questions with the contact for your area prior to contacting the project team. However, the project team can always be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
8. How can I get involved to make sure the new CoA design fits my needs?
Please contact the CBO– and CFO– designated contacts for your unit to see how you can contribute.
9. Where can I find more information regarding the CoA Phase 2?
All CoA Phase 2 information will be on this website, so you’ve come to the right place. This site will be updated periodically as Phase 2 progresses. The CoA Phase 2 FAQs will be dynamic and updated as we progress through the project.
10. What is the current status of the Project Portfolio Management (PPM)–to–General Ledger (GL) reconciliation project?
The PPM–to–GL reconciliation effort is ongoing. We are looking through a significant volume of transactions and will engage with units at the appropriate time to jointly manage new transactions. The PPM–to–GL reconciliation project is a current priority and a sub–project to the CoA Phase 2 initiative.
11. What is change management?
Change management is the proactive and structured approach to transition individuals, teams, and organizations from a current state to a desired future state. For CoA Phase 2, Rutgers has contracted with KPMG to collaborate with University Finance and Administration Project Management Office to deploy leading engagement, communications and learning practices and tools. This will help ensure that stakeholders are better prepared to utilize the CoA updates once they go into effect.
12. Will training be provided regarding the changes resulting from CoA Phase 2?
Training will be provided in two ways at select timeframes during this effort. We will develop learning activities to assist with project execution, for example how to utilize the Enterprise Data Management Cloud Service (EDMCS) tool. We also will develop learning activities to assist the end user in utilizing the CoA effectively once the changes to the chart are implemented.
1. How will Program and Initiative be used?
Overall definitions of what each segment should contain have been established and will be followed during the design sessions.
Program should capture an area of focus, an ongoing defined body of work, or a formal program or operation. It can be used to align revenue and expense for an area of focus (i.e., a mini P&L), but is not used to record net position (balances). Standards will be established for system-wide, campus-wide or Vice President-wide purposes, or for a single area for an institutionally significant purpose. The Program segment will be somewhat flexible, especially at the campus level. The four campuses will discuss if there is a demand for consistency within this segment.
The Initiative segment should capture transactions related to a common purpose or activity and should provide the ability to summarize and/or group related transactions across multiple areas. The Initiative segment will have either dedicated specific or generic values for system-wide, campus-wide, or Vice President-wide purposes. Additionally, common generic values can be used by any area to meet local/internal reporting needs.
2. How will units understand what Program and Initiative generic codes mean? Will they be prepopulated?
There will be pre-defined codes with generic names, i.e., Conference 1, Conference 2, Conference 3, etc.; or Initiative 1, Initiative 2, Initiative 3, etc.
Whether to leave the pre-defined generic names or attach specific names to the codes to identify programs or initiatives will be discussed with the units during the design sessions in the coming months.
3. For those areas who currently track true locations via the Location segment, are there alternative solutions for capturing that detail since the Location segment will likely be reserved as the Future Use segment?
Yes, location could be incorporated into the Department or Program segment hierarchies. The Department segment could capture areas specific to each campus where they are located. The Program segment could be a place to separate out different areas of focus and can be utilized as a mini P&L. Alternative solutions will be vetted through the design sessions.