Archived Data from prior periods is available in the FYI Archive.

Corrections:

On issue number three:

The third issue relates to the "DCN" activity in moving expenses from pay periods already paid - altering the distribution on future charges is operating just fine - it is only on moving charges going forward.

The last line of this paragraph says:

This issue would cause an understatement of actual and fringe encumbrances - or overstate actual and fringe budget balance available.

The statement is exactly reverse of what it should say - it should say:

This issue would cause an overstatement of actual and fringe encumbrances - or understate actual and fringe budget balance available.

Additions

A number of funds in finance are now displaying zero dollars for fringe encumbrances.

On September 11th a rate change was implemented for the full unrestricted fringe rate. This was supposed to have a net result only on the budgets and encumbrances for unrestricted funds on account codes where the third character was U or the fourth character was F. During the implementation of this, one of the major processes used by Banner to calculate the encumbrance amounts, crashed. We spent significant hours in crafting and testing a fix for this crash - and believed it calculated all ok. However, many users have reported their fringe encumbrances have been reduced to zero and should not have been.

Some funds have noted an event described as "Retro-Deducts".

It appears that as the academic year began, and deferred pays were getting established, there were a number of incidents where the deferred pay amounts had to be adjusted for one reason or another. This adjustment process was worked on by a number of folks, including our SCT HR Consultant and Payroll staff. However, we appear, on second glance, to have used an earn code that resulted in some incorrect postings to finance.

Using this incorrect earn code would have resulted in a increase of the salary encumbrance processed as part of a normal payroll. In other words, it would appear that the salary had been reduced when the adjustment occurred. In addition, it would have caused the encumbrance to be increased. The net result on the line's budget balance available within finance should be equal, but the salary and encumbrance amounts will appear to be misstated by the amounts of this adjustment.

Stephanie Behan and I went over the results of this earn code and we have crafted a more appropriate one to use going forward. It will take a little time to reverse the effects you are seeing from the former earn code, but we will adjust them as quickly as we can and you should not see this type of activity in the future.

There have been reports of fringe benefits being calculated on College Work-study earnings when the student has incurred overtime.

Stephanie Behan has reviewed these questions and determined that the earn code used for Student overtime references an account code that does cause fringe to be calculated at the partial rate, currently 8.4%. Stephanie and I discussed this and we have proposed a new account code be created specifically for Student overtime which would record that expense separately and be classified as exempt from fringe benefits. This has been shared with others who would be impacted and we are hopeful to have this in place for next week's payroll run, which is a Labor run and could result in more activity against these account codes.

As soon as the new account code is in place, Stephanie will update the HR system to use this account code for all student overtime. This will prevent the calculation of fringe going forward. Additionally, all overtime payments to student workers (both work studies and student hourly) will need to be redistributed in the HR system. As these are processed, they will cause the fringe calculation to be reversed in finance.

Obviously, this reversal will take some time, so bear with us all as this effort proceeds.

If you have any questions - please contact your campus help desk or send email to Banner Finance.

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Many of our users have expressed concern regarding retro pay processing, fringe benefit processing that is associated with earnings that are not liquidating, and encumbrances. There are circumstances where processes are causing an overstatement of the department's fringe and budget balance availability. We've tried to outline the situation and an explanation of the problem in the following statements. If you are a campus liaison, please pass this message on to your users. Thanks for your patience as we work through these issues.

The first issue that is affecting some funds - not all - is retro pay.

When we first went live, all the retro earn codes were marked as normal pay. This meant that they would cause both an expense and attempt a liquidation.

We first discovered this shortly after go live and believed it was limited to only a few earn codes. Since that time, we have realized this has impacted all earn codes deal with retroactivity.

The issue lies in the encumbrance for a position that is put in the system late - does not always reference the first pay date - as it may well be in the past. When the job is created with a date after the actual beginning date, the dollars for the retroactivity were never encumbered. This may work for new - hires but did not consistently work in other issues.

We have since altered all retroactive earn codes to simply expense charges, not to attempt to liquidate.

The pieces that were liquidated in error - have not yet been corrected we are in the process of identifying them all now.

This issue would cause an understatement of encumbrances - or an overstatement of Budget Balance Available.

The second issue is related to the first - fringe benefits associated with earnings that do not liquidate.

After we had corrected the issue in the first issue, we noted that although the actual charges were not liquidating, the fringe related items continued to liquidate. We have been in contact with SCT and found this has been an outstanding issue since 1998 and has no fix date yet assigned.

We found code in the request to SCT and are in the process of modifying our code to support this. The fix has been made, and tested. We are only waiting on approval to migrate this to production.

Once this process is migrated, we will adjust all related fringe items as necessary.

This issue would cause an understatement of fringe encumbrances - or an overstatement of fringe Budget Balance Available.

The third issue relates to the "DCN" activity in moving expenses from pay periods already paid - altering the distribution on future charges is operating just fine - it is only on moving charges going forward.

When the charges are moved from one FOAPAL to another, Banner uses the rule codes that were originally assigned to the charges being distributed on all FOAPALs the charge is distributed to. Additionally, it uses the encumbrance number-item-sequence number used on the original transaction. Banner finance does not like this. The new FOAPAL has associated with it encumbrance data that does not match the encumbrance FOAPAL in finance. This causes all the new charges to fail to post.

We have been in contact with SCT on this issue. SCT has indicated this is operating as designed (even though it is creating transactions that will not post to finance.)

The IT folks are looking at some way that we can modify our existing site so that these entries will not occur. We would rather the transactions only move expense and not deal with encumbrance activity at all in these cases.

In the interim, and for the past two or three payroll runs. We have instituted a process whereby we alter the rule codes once in finance for all redistribution items. This did not begin until late August so we are in the process of collecting the appropriate data to reverse any activity relating to these items going forward.

This issue would cause an understatement of actual and fringe encumbrances - or overstate actual and fringe budget balance available.

Lastly, we do have some encumbrance activity that has a negative encumbrance value in HR. This is not allowed in finance.

In HR, there are some encumbrance items that have exceeded their encumbrances. This occurs for a variety of reasons, but what occurs when this interfaces with finance is the record you would see on the first screen of DOCR would say we liquidated one dollar amount, but the detail ledger record will have only liquidated an amount up to the amount available in the encumbrance line.

This is something we have been tracking - but do not have any immediate solution for, nor does SCT.

The encumbrance will be zero in finance and some negative number in HR. The real issue begins when more funds are encumbered. Because HR was at zero - it will absorb some of the encumbrance until it become positive - while finance will be positive right away (it was limited to a zero amount). This will cause a variance between finance and HR - where finance will continuously be overstated as compared to HR.

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The State of New Hampshire approved a flat funded state appropriation budget for the University System of New Hampshire last week. Adjustments to reflect this level of State Appropriation are being collected and will be populated into Banner. One of the adjustments is associated with the recovery of cost for fringe benefits. The Non-grants full fringe benefit rate has been changed from 39.0% to 40.0% effective with all salaries and wages earned after August 30 (and paid this week). The rate change was made in the Banner HR system and posted to the Finance system during the day on September 11. As a result of this adjustment, the original budget remains at the 39% and your new revised budget will reflect the sum of 2 months at the 39% rate and 10 months at the new 40% rate. Additional manual entries will be made in September to adjust original budgets.

For more detailed information please see The Non-Grant Full Benefit's Eligible Fringe Rate Change.

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As processes were being run this week, a problem occurred with one of the programs that supports the calculations to interface HR with the finance system. IT staff are working on this problem now. As soon as the program is corrected and tested, we will complete the processes to post this pay period's results to finance.

We apologize in advance for any inconvenience this delay may cause you.

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Last Modified: 6/21/2012 12:25 PM
Last Published: