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Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers to common questions about the Chart of Accounts project, collected and shared below.

  • What is the Chart of Accounts? What’s changing? 
  • The Chart of Accounts, or CoA, is the basic structure that UC Davis uses to record and organize financial transactions to facilitate financial reporting. The future state Chart of Accounts will: 
    > Replace the Full Accounting Unit (FAU) structure. 
    > Organize UC Davis finances by separating assets, liabilities, net position, expenses and revenues to provide a clear understanding of the university’s financial status.  
    > Organize and report data out of the financial system. 
    > Support financial and management reporting by serving as the basis for the fiscal administration of UC Davis funds, programs, projects, organizations and activities. 
    > Serve as the common language for financial transactions whether they are created directly in the financial system, generated in another major university system, or created through a local third-party application. However, it may not support the detailed fiscal tracking of all institutional activities. Some detailed information currently stored in the FAU will instead be captured within other modules or functionality of the new financial system.  
  • Why does UC Davis need a new Chart of Accounts? 
  • The new Chart of Accounts (CoA) will align with the new UC Common Chart of Accounts (CCoA) at the UC Office of the President.

    Redesigning the Chart of Accounts will help resolve many of the financial management and reporting challenges faced by UC Davis today.

    Full Accounting Unit (FAU) segments are used inconsistently across UC Davis. The fields within the new CoA will be strictly defined and administered to maintain institutional integrity.  

    The new CoA will serve as the backbone of a new financial system we are implementing, allowing us to maximize system configuration and functionality. 
  • How did we arrive at the Chart of Accounts structure? 
  • The Chart of Accounts (CoA) structure is based on the UC Common Chart of Accounts (CCoA). To arrive at the final CoA structure, the Chart of Accounts project team is deploying a phased approach to engage with stakeholders and subject matter experts (SMEs): 
    > Discovery: Information and requirements gathering sessions with SMEs across UC Davis 
    > Design: Prototype CoA design and segment definition 
    > Proof of Concept: Scenario demonstration and validation of prototype CoA 
    > Initial Value Development: Value, range and hierarchy development 
    > Conversion mapping: Full CoA string mapping and finalization 
  • Who is impacted by the new Chart of Accounts? 
  • The new Chart of Accounts will impact everyone who submits financial transactions in Kuali. 
    Additional systems that will be impacted include:
    > AggieBuy
    > Banner
    > CASHNet
  • Why are there so many chart segments in the new Chart of Accounts? 
  • The use of nine chart segments allows greater flexibility in how we use the Chart of Accounts to support our business and reporting needs.   

    Each segment will have a single use with a clear and consistent definition, and when combined, these segments will tell the unique story of each individual transaction. 
  • Currently, UC Davis uses several charts (3,L,S,H,M,P, etc.). Will we continue to use multiple charts of accounts? 
  • The current chart structure will be changing, so the information we currently think of as “charts” will now be built into the “entity” segment. "Entity" will delineate operational units with their own Federal Tax Payer Identification number, including UC Davis Campus, UC Davis Medical Center, Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR), UC Davis Foundation, etc. 
  • Will assignment of Principal Investigator (PI) still be a component/attribute of the Chart of Accounts? 
  • The Chart of Accounts project team will be listening and recording the needs and requirements of groups across UC Davis. Those needs will be assessed to determine whether they are best met in the chart of accounts design or through the delivered functionality of the finance system.

    In the case of Principal Investigator, tracking and management of that attribute will likely be met through the system, rather than as a component of the new chart.
  • Will the existing chart cleanup be part of the Chart of Accounts mapping project, or a separate work stream? 
  • There will be two separate work streams, though there may be potential overlap between the two. 

    The work stream for data cleanup will include departments evaluating their existing data for: 
    > Confirmation of accurate account balances
    > Accounts that may be appropriate to deactivate due to lack of use
    > Opportunities to close out accounts with small balances

    Additionally, there will be a mapping work stream where the Chart of Accounts (CoA) project team will engage with departments to: 
    > Understand the current use of chart elements to ensure accurate translation from the legacy CoA to the future CoA
    > Validate that mapping rules are correct once we move data into the future chart
    > Develop crosswalk tables to aid departments in identifying mapping of the legacy CoA to the future CoA
  • Is there consideration to how we will look at historical data under the current Chart of Accounts compared to the new Chart of Accounts going forward? 
  • The Chart of Accounts project team will be mapping historical data into the future chart structure, so there will be the ability to compare historical data to future data.  However, this will be a very different structure for chart of accounts, so it may be more complex than a one-to-one translation.

    The mapping work stream includes engaging with departments to understand how the current chart elements are being used in order to make the mapping of historical data to the future chart as accurate as possible.

    Maintenance and access of detailed historical data is still to be determined.
  • How will the Chart of Accounts effort interface with the new accounting system planning? How might this impact CoA design, including character limitations, coding requirements and any aspects of the elements themselves that have been pre-defined by the UC Office of the President?
  • Our future state Chart of Accounts (CoA) will be designed and developed to meet our needs within the flexibility and parameters of the UC Office of the President's delivered structure, the Common Chart of Accounts (CCoA). The actual character values are, at some level, determined by UCOP for reporting across the UC system.

    Fortunately, we are looking at the same financial system that UCOP is using, so the character elements and numbering system structure will be similar. The future CoA will be designed to be system agnostic.