All Funds Planning
Often times this is a result of multiple individuals being in the Plan File at the same time. In order to enter and save data you will need to “Acquire the Lock.” Please see the below image.
OBP will make these data available as part of the communication plan and will expect all mandated market-based changes to be incorporated into the position planning forms within the process. These planned increases will allow senior leadership to more easily see the financial impact by unit and how each unit may or may not be capable of dealing with these adjustments within their existing resources. Just like ERE rates, Admin Service Charge rates, or merit-based adjustment drivers, market minimums will be another planning driver departments will need to factor in going forward as part of the UCAP implementation.
Fall metric data’s proportional relationship to annual metric totals are the best recommended approach for planning your metric data submissions. Spring metric data will always be provided during the middle of the submission planning calendar, simply because the Spring semester starts in the middle of the submission calendar. Colleges should base their planning and forecasting decisions off of metric data provided in the Fall. That said, OBP is actively working on reducing the turnaround time from snapshot date to publication to as short of a window as is feasible to ensure accuracy of the underlying data. We are targeting as a goal a three-day turnaround time by Fall 2020. The integration of RCM data building and reporting within our operations is relatively new, but please know we are devoting significant portions of our resources to automating and improving the data compilation and reporting processes associated with RCM metric data. OBP will continue to work closely with the Provost’s Office to ensure an updated RCM Model is provided in the beginning of January when the All Funds Planning submission forms and reports are opened for campus submission. Furthermore, within the new tool, the current plan is to load RCM Model data produced by Fall forecasting into your planning forms to minimize data entry and confusion around the most updated RCM Model forecasts. RCM metric data forms will be provided in the early Fall as the first go-live submission process.
The goal is that OBP will design and build reporting within the UA Budget and Planning system that is a value-add to departmental and college/division finance professionals throughout the year, so these data are used to support the management of your units. In addition, the longer-term vision is that planning will not be an isolated annual process and will become a quarterly in-year forecasting process that makes these data sets relevant to sound and prudent financial management and strategic decision-making as part of your ongoing operations. We hope to partner with campus finance officers to see this vision come to life in a collaborative fashion and we welcome feedback and participation as we develop these tools and processes in the years to come.
Many of the challenges around the Narrative in the FY19 submission will be addressed by different approaches afforded to us in the new system that were not available to us easily within Adaptive Planning. Specifically, future Narratives will be focused less on financial information and more on strategy. Future Narrative submissions will focus only on Mission, Vision, Accomplishments, Goals, Risks & Challenges, and Strengths & Opportunities. All metric or financial comparisons, analysis, and trend explanations will be imbedded in Axiom form or report requirements that finance officers will complete and leadership will sign off on when submitting. The UA Budget and Planning system will also allow us to migrate user comments into forms and reports within submission and out of the Narrative. It will also allow us to summarize comments in a report for executive review. MS word format will be the standard medium going forward.
Departmental level review and submission is planned for in the new system for all units. We plan to have position planning as part of the process, which we recognize would likely be difficult at a college or division level, especially for very large colleges. The general practice will still be a single narrative and submission per college/division, but we can certainly isolate departments that can submit additional narratives if they choose to. If you are in one of these divisions, please let your Analyst know this is your preference.
The All Funds Planning process is supported by Senior Leadership with expectations that it will expand and be enhanced in the years to come. In addition to Senior Leadership expectations, these data are used as part of the institution’s Annual Operating Budget (AOB) due to the Arizona Board of Regents (ABOR) during the June meeting every year. Board policy requires approval of our AOB and Board staff require our submissions in May, so many of these dates cannot practically be moved. OBP staff need time to compile and analyze these data in preparation for May submissions, so, for a $2.1B budget, moving our deadlines any further back is not practically feasible at this juncture. We hope through process improvement, automation, and adoption of the new system we may be able to offer more flexibility in the future, but at this point in time it simply is not practical. Auxiliary and large Designated units have been performing a Local Fund Budget Process on this very timeline for over 30 years and therefore the more seasoned units (Residence Life, Campus Health, Facilities Management, Student Unions, etc.) may be useful case studies to look toward for revising your planning processes and timelines. Since these processes are not going away and cannot practically move, your units planning processes and timelines may need to begin to move to align more closely to institutional processes.
One strategy to assist will be to pre-schedule meetings during the fall. In addition, the CFO has indicated an interest in working with OBP to enhance this process throughout the year. OBP will be creating and providing a UA Budget and Planning system dashboard for the CFO, Provost, and their teams to track submission timeliness and completion. This dashboard will be made visible to all campus units, so a peer comparison of timeliness will be available to all. OBP will include completion rate information in campus communications, include thank yous and appreciation to units who have successfully completed. Finally, training and communication will include a lot of additional information and resources on the purpose and advantages of participation, including budget vs. actuals reporting and examples of challenges that have been headed off with effective planning.
OBP is proposing enhancements to communication to leadership at all levels. If enhanced communication and clarification around expectations of leadership is not at issue, then we would appreciate additional feedback on this topic.
Suggested communication improvements we will put forward to senior leadership include:
- More frequent, direct, and targeted communication from Provost and CFO to finance officers, VPs, deans, and department heads about timelines, purpose, roles, and expectations.
- Include, in both training and communication with finance personnel, what the expectations are, how the information is being used, and what was learned. These communications will occur before, during, and after submission.
- Communication should be frequent and varied.
- We will adopt the FSO Year-End Rollover communication strategy of communicating weekly throughout the submission timeline window and will target communication and feedback at least monthly with RUBO throughout the product build process.
- We will meet with college business officer groups to provide product demonstration and seek feedback throughout the product build process.
- Meetings with CFO and Provost should be scheduled in the Fall for the Spring when initial communications come out, so there are no surprises about when these meetings are being held and finance officers feel confident that they have met the appropriate submission deadlines.
OBP will enhance documentation, training, and drill-through reporting features associated with metric data as part of the UA Budget and Planning system adoption process. Also, OBP is proposing enhancements to communication to leadership at all levels.
CFO Lisa Rulney has indicated support of our future Narrative submission approach that will focus only on Mission, Vision, Accomplishments, Goals, Risks & Challenges, and Strengths & Opportunities. She has also indicated support of many of the components of the analysis we currently perform including trending information associated with metrics, revenues, expenditures, and balance changes. We will work with the Provost’s team to learn and incorporate more related to their expectations.
Each college/division should decide how they want to use these modules to aid them in their preparation of their All Funds Plans. That said, position rosters and operational forecasts are loaded automatically by OBP in an attempt to minimize data entry, so even if no additional changes are made there will be an FY21 Budget created for each department even if no changes are made to the plan files, it just may not reflect the actual projected budget position of the unit (meaning it may be over or understated). OBP strongly encourages you to speak directly with your cognizant dean, VP, and SVP before decided not to participate in this process.
The initial modules and process are designed to support annual budgeting and therefore are only expected to be done once a year. Future enhancements will allow for in-year forecasting, commitment tracking, and base budget adjustments which will be more frequent activities. Guidelines and training associated with timing and use of those modules and processes will be provided as they are released to campus.
No. That is the expected due date of the college/division level All Funds Plan module that utilizes data from Labor Planning and the Operating Budget. Please check with your college/division finance office for departmental deadlines they may set for your unit.
The RBC process will be replaced in future module releases. The current estimate is ~December 2020.
Talk about commitments against fund balances in your narrative. In the future, there will be a commitment tracker tool to help reflect this during your annual planning process. Faculty use of fund balance would be an expense. Consider the management process you are using that has you carrying fund balance with no future planned expenses and whether there are options to change your management approach as well. Difficult budget times call for new approaches to how we manage and utilize our scarce resources.
Look at attrition dollars. People retire and move to other jobs and this creates some surplus. It’s costly to replace people so we need to retain great employees. If all of your employees are great and/or your operations cannot sustain any further reductions without impacting the mission or strategies of the University, then communicate upwards to leadership. This tool and process is first and foremost a communication tool. Use your Annual Update/narrative and/or the Budget Request module to communicate funding needs and challenges.
No. The 4% reduction is to your Allocated sources (your annual recurring base budget transfer). The 2% salary pool is an increase in expenditures.
Yes – these will be ongoing. The 4% reduction is to your Allocated sources (your annual recurring base budget transfer).
The vendor suggests use of Microsoft Edge. OBP has found Chrome and Firefox also generally seem fine. We have seen some performance issues with iPad and other Safari browser applications. There is no logout button. You logout by closing your browser. OBP has found a very common solution to many display problems to use the home button under the “waffle” but selecting “Budgeting” and/or simply closing and relaunching your browser.