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Controller's Office > News > Panther Post Newsletter
Newsletter 2012 Volume 14

In this Edition...

  • Monthly Closing Calendars
  • Petty Cash & Participant Payment Fund Custodian Acknowledgement Forms
  • Important Changes to Account Procedures for DSO Reimbursements
  • Electronic Unencumbered Forms
  • Receiving Transaction Notifications
  • Accounts Payable E-mail Address
  • Allowable Unencumbered Purchases
  • Credit Card Procedures
  • Travel FAQs and Reminders
  • New Activity Nbr Request E-Form
  • PantherSoft Financials Training
  • UPK Instructions
  • How to sign up for the Panther Post Newsletter
  • Monthly Closing Calendars:

    The August 2012 period in the general ledger has closed. When running your reports, please keep in mind that the Reporting Environment has a 24 hour delay in displaying data. Our team counts on you to meet crucial Monthly Closing Deadlines that enable us to maintain a timely financial reporting process. The current month schedule can be found at Accounting and Reporting Services.

    If you are experiencing difficulty with PantherSoft or have questions, please feel free to contact our Call Center for assistance at Extension 7-7200. Open Labs are now offered Monday thru Friday between 9:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. at the Campus Support Complex (CSC) Room 1135. Please call Extension 7-7200 for an appointment. We encourage you to bring your own transactions so that we may provide you with real hands-on assistance using work related scenarios.

    Do you have an approved Petty Cash or Participant Payment Fund?

    Each new fiscal year, our office requests that all custodians of petty cash funds complete an annual petty cash custodian form and submit it to the Controllerís Office for our records. These forms are reviewed by auditors and serve as confirmation that the funds remain under your care and that they are properly safeguarded. Please complete and sign a new yearly Custodian Acknowledgement Form and submit it to PC 120, attention Nikki Zovath.

    Participant Payment Funds (PPF) must have a Custodian Acknowledgement Form completed by the current custodian on file for such funds. In addition, if the period of the approved PPF has lapsed, then the funds must be either returned and the PPF closed, or an Extension Form must be completed, signed, and approved in order for replenishments to continue being processed.

    All forms must have proper signatures and activity numbers or projects, whichever the case. Forms that are not complete will be returned to the custodians for proper completion. Delays in submission of these forms may result in payments being held until completed forms have been received. Please note that these forms are due now.

    For your convenience, below is the link to all Controllersí Office Forms.


    Please call Betty Sanchez at Extension 7-2634 if you have any questions regarding petty cash or participant payment funds.

    Important Changes to Account Procedures for DSO Reimbursements

    New Procedures for accounting for Reimbursements from Direct Support Organizations (DSOs) are now available in the Controllerís website. Please take the time to review them carefully as there are important changes being implemented this new fiscal year. If any additions, revisions or updates are made to these procedures, these will be announced in the PantherPost.

    Accounting for Funds Received from DSOs

    Accounting and Reporting Services Contact Information

    Back to Accounting and Reporting Services Headlines Top of page

    Electronic Unencumbered Forms:

    Accounts Payable is now accepting Unencumbered Forms electronically. The forms will be approved through the workflow instead of with manual signatures. Please begin using the electronic form immediately. Copies or originals should NOT be sent to Accounts Payable. As of August 20th, all Unencumbered Forms received by mail or through e-mail are being returned to the department.

    Instruction manuals are available on the Controllerís website. Electronic Unencumbered forms can be entered using the link below:

    Receiving Transaction Notifications:

    Panthersoft automatically generates e-mails when an invoice has been entered for payment and the associated receiving has not been completed. The e-mails are sent to the person that entered the requisition. The e-mails will continue to be sent every 5th day until the invoice has been successfully matched to the purchase order.

    If you feel that you are receiving the e-mails in error, either because you did not enter the requisition or because the receiving was already completed please email Liza Del Campo at ldelcam@fiu.edu immediately.

    Accounts Payable E-mail Address:

    The Accounts Payable department is now accepting invoices via e-mail. If you or a vendor wishes to e-mail an invoice to Accounts Payable, please send the invoices to payables@fiu.edu. We will continue to accept invoices via interoffice and regular mail. Invoices should NOT be e-mailed directly to the Sr. Fiscal Assistants. If you choose to send the invoice by e-mail, please do NOT send the original to Accounts Payable.

    Allowable Unencumbered Purchases:

    The list of allowable unencumbered purchases has been recently updated. Refer to the instructions form on the Controllerís web site for the complete list:

    Accounts Payable Services Contact Information

    Back to Accounts Payable Services Headlines Top of page

    Credit Card Procedures

    Cardholder Limit Reviews:

    Credit limits are assigned to Cardholders based on their purchasing needs. The Credit Card Solutions Team conducts reviews to analyze the Cardholderís transactional spend in comparison to their assigned credit limits.

    If it is determined that the Cardholder is not utilizing the majority of their credit limit in a span of a year, the Cardholderís credit limits will automatically be adjusted to fit their card spend. The Cardholder will be notified via email of any change to their credit limits.

    Card Inactivity Reviews:

    At the end of each fiscal quarter, a Card Inactivity Review is conducted by the Credit Card Solutions Team. Cardholders who have not had card activity during the consecutive three month period prior to the review will be sent an Inactivity Notification via email.

    If the card is still needed, a Cardholder is required to reply to the email with a justification as to why the card account must remain open. Cardholders may also reply to the notification indicating that the card is no longer needed and can request card cancellation.

    If no response is received within three weeks of the notification, the card account will be automatically cancelled and the Cardholder will receive notification.

    Card Security/Sharing:

    Each Cardholder is responsible for the security of the card assigned to them. Use of the University issued credit cards is limited to the Cardholder whose name appears on the face of the card. Under no circumstances will a card be given or loaned out to another person.

    Please remember that all precautions should be used to maintain confidentiality of all information relating to your card, such as the card number and expiration date. The card and/or card number should never be left in a conspicuous place, emailed or shared with anyone else, even with a trusted colleague.

    Have You Logged Onto the PaymentNet Site Yet?:

    The JP Morganís Payment Net system provides cardholders online access to features such as:

  • PDF Copy of Billing Monthly Statements

  • The ability to view current, live card activity as well as authorizations and declines

  • Access to a variety of preset transaction queries

  • An easy, online payment mechanism (for T&E Cardholders only)
  • If you need additional support accessing the bank site, by calling 1-800-270-7760 (also located on the back of your card), you will be transferred to a specially-trained PaymentNet 4 consultant.

    When making the call, you will be prompted by the system to verify your identity. After doing so, you can press 0 to be connected to a consultant. Support is available between the hours of 5:00 a.m., Central Time (CT) and 1:00 a.m., CT, Monday Ė Friday.

    If you have not logged into the PaymentNet system since the program went live or have forgotten your password, please contact PaymentNet Support or the Credit Card Solutions Team to reset your temporary password. You can also learn more about PaymentNet and review step-by-step instructions for logging in, refer to page 41 of your Departmental Card Manual and/or page 18 of your T&E Card Manual.

    Online Resources:

    Have additional questions about The Credit Card Solutions Program? Answers are only a click away!

    For additional information, please visit our program manuals online at

    These valuable resources can provide you quick clarification on program rules and procedures, easy access to forms and other related links; in addition to contact information to help you connect with a Credit Card Solutions Team Member.

    Credit Card Solutions Contact Information

    Back to Credit Card Procedures Top of page

    Travel FAQs and Reminders


    If we do not have any reimbursable expenses, do we have to create an ER?

    A: Yes. Expense reports are the method used to track travel expenses. If you traveled and incurred expenses whether through a T&E card or PO, you must still submit an ER. If you are not due a reimbursement, you would classify the expenses as non-reimbursable. There are two main reasons for this, first, the ER will reconcile against the TA, ensuring that the encumbrance from the TA is released. Secondly, we will make sure that all travel charges are recorded as such.

    If we do not have any reimbursable expenses, can we just delete the TA and not do an ER?

    A: No. Please see above question regarding creating an ER. As far as a TA, you should only delete a TA if the trip did not happen. If the trip did happen, you must move forward with creating an ER. This is the only way that the encumbrance created by the TA will be released.

    If the travel was cancelled and there were no expenses incurred then cancel the TAís to release these encumbrances. See navigation below.

    Navigation: Employee Self-Service> Travel and Expense Center> Travel Authorization> Cancel> Enter Travelerís Employee ID> Search> Select the TA# to Cancel> Cancel Selected Travel Authorization.

    If guidance is needed with the process of closing Travel Authorizations (TA), the following navigation is helpful, or contact the Call Center at 7-7200 or email the Office of the Controller.

    Do we have to create a TA if we are paying for a voucher or Pcard?

    A: Yes, however if you do not want the TA to encumber the funds, you can just detail the expenses in the comments box. A TA will only encumber funds if it is listed by expense item on the TA form.

    Important Reminders

  • Mileage expense must be submitted for reimbursement at least once per quarter or when the reimbursable amount exceeds $100, whichever comes first.

  • The cost of preferred seating, business class, first class, or any other travel upgrades is not reimbursable, unless justified and approved by the CFO.

  • If the trip has already occurred and an Expense Report has been paid, cancel the TA for that report.

  • Expense reports are required to be created ten (10) days after the completion of a trip for reimbursement and/or accountability.

  • Travelers, who have not reconciled received Cash Advances within thirty (30) days after the completion of a trip, will not be allowed another cash advance for twelve (12) months.

  • Credit card statements and bank statements are not receipts and should not be included in the supporting documentation for an expense report. These statements indicate charges only and payment. Additionally, a receipt must indicate proof and method of payment.

  • Alcoholic beverages are not reimbursable using Business Unit FIU01. Contact the Foundation office for DSO reimbursement.

  • A Travel Authorization is always required when physically attending a conference, convention, workshop or seminar regardless of the distance from the travelersí headquarters. Participating in online workshops, seminars, etc. does not require an approved Travel Authorization even when the registration fee is prepaid by the University.
  • Travel Services Contact Information

    Back to Travel FAQs and Reminders Top of page

    New Activity Nbr Request E-Form

    In an effort to be Worlds Ahead and support FIUís Go Green Initiative, the Activity Nbr request process has been automated via an e-form. The Activity Nbr Request E-form can be found in the Office of the Controller form site. This e-form reduces the process life cycle and improves efficiency by automating the approval workflow.

    PantherSoft Financials Training

    The Financial Systems and Support training team has posted the PantherSoft financials courses for the fall term. To view available training on PantherSoft Financials and to register, please navigate to the Training Registration site. The FSSS training staff has also updated the User Productivity Kit (UPKís) to reflect the Chart of Accounts conversion. The UPK is an on-demand training tool, which assists users in becoming familiar with the PantherSoft Financials environment. It provides a mock-up of how the system will look, thus allowing users to understand how their specific business processes will work.

    UPK Instructions

    Once in the utility, click the "+" sign adjacent to a main and sub topic within the "Outline" section (left column). Then select either "SEE IT", "TRY IT", "KNOW IT" or "PRINT-IT" (upper right of screen) for the topic selected. Each of these options will progressively take the user from a hands-off presentation in "SEE IT" mode to completely hands-on in the "KNOW IT" mode. The "PRINT-IT" mode will print the exact steps you need to complete the task. Click here to view UPKs.

    For assistance with PantherSoft Financials please call the Helpdesk at ext. 7200 or email the Office of the Controller.

    Back to Financial Systems & Support Services Headlines Top of page

    How to sign up for the Panther Post Newsletter

    The Panther Post is distributed to individuals on the following ListServ: Office of the Controller, Finance-Managers and Panther Post. If you wish to be added to the ListServ for the Panther Post, please email controller@fiu.edu.

    Back to Panther Post Sign Up Top of page

    Office of the Controller