Ohio University

Financial System Enhancements Highlight: Financial Approvers Tool (FARM)

Each month, a feature of the Financial System Enhancements (FSE) will be highlighted to help prepare for the upcoming changes.

One change requested by the campus CFAOs, in planning for FSE, related to aligning transaction approvals with planning unit fiscal responsibility. Today, an employee’s supervisor approves their Concur expense reports and procurement card transactions, rather than having the transactions approved by the department or planning unit that is responsible for the cost center being charged. As part of FSE, we are changing the approval structure in Concur to accommodate this.

Currently, while supervisor information is fed to Concur nightly, requests to establish/change approvers in BobcatBUY is largely a manual process. Planning units submit requests to Finance when establishing new organizations or projects and this information is maintained manually within BobcatBUY; this is onerous when there are personnel changes within the units requiring maintenance to many cost centers and projects. To streamline the management of approvers, a new system has been developed to allow planning unit CFAOs and their delegates to maintain their BobcatBUY (BCB) and Concur approvers.

Current Process

Future Process

The new Financial Approvers and Related Metadata system, also known as FARM, will allow planning units to maintain approvers centrally based on their University’s organizational structure.

All approvals will be based on organization and utilize the organization hierarchy. Approvers can be set up at any hierarchy level (planning unit level, department level) or by individual organization value.

For BCB, there are various approval levels that can be assigned based on the planning unit’s delegation of authority.

Approval Levels Limit Levels
BCB $0-1,500 $1,500
BCB $1,500-5,000 $5,000
BCB $5,000-10,000 $10,000
BCB $10,000-25,000 $25,000
BCB $25,000-50,000 $50,000
BCB $50,000+ $50,000+

The system has a number of features that allow planning units to maintain their approvers while minimizing the effort required:

  • Can assign approvers based on the organization hierarchy, as new organizations are set-up the approvers are already established based on the hierarchy
  • Can copy an existing employee’s approval levels
  • Can replace one employee’s approval levels by assigning to someone else, due to reorganization/turnover
  • Can easily remove/end date an employee’s approval levels

Training for Financial Approvers will be held in late September for CFAOs and selected delegates. Invitations to register will be distributed on September 12 from coa@ohio.edu. The system will be available for CFAOs and selected delegates to access from September 26 through November, with a go-live planned for December (with the Chart of Accounts and Oracle Grants Accounting Module).

Questions? Contact the project team at coa@ohio.edu or contact your Change Network Representative