DFL weekly update - November 13, 2020

Upcoming deadlines at a glance

  • Thursday, 11/19 - Submit completed and approved org tree requests

  • Monday, 11/30 - Submit completed form to queue commitments for Q2

  • Wednesday, 12/2 - Submit DOF template

  • Thursday, 12/3 - Complete External Audit Confirmation for Q2

  • Friday, 1/8 - Report year-end gift recording and receipting

Budget process

Budget process update

The CalPlanning planning tools (CalPlan, HCP) are currently closed so that the Financial Planning & Analysis team can review the budget submissions. The CalPlanning reporting tools (CalRptg, HCPRptg, Smart View) will remain available, with FY21 Operating Budget Planner Submission available for reporting. The Q1 variance reports will go out once the budgets are finalized. 

Action items

Submit completed and approved org tree requests by Thursday, November 19

The org tree is open in November for all approved changes to the November org tree. The FY2020-21 budget is still in the process of being finalized. We will proceed with the implementation of all approved org tree changes to include movements between divisions which were previously on hold due to the delayed budget process. Completed and approved forms for changes to the November Org tree including Org Node and DeptID movements must be submitted by the November 19 submission deadline.

We recommend that you submit your change request form and all required supplemental materials for review as soon as possible to allow time for the Financial Planning & Analysis team to review your request, follow-up with you for any necessary clarification, approve your request, and allow you time to obtain all required signatures before the submission deadline. The time needed to review change requests will vary, depending on the complexity of the request. For more information:

  • A high-level summary of the process to approve org tree changes is available on the DFL Knowledge and Resource Portal.

  • An overview of the org tree change submission deadlines is available in the Org Tree Submission and Processing Timeline. All Org Tree change types including Org Node and DeptID movements will be available after the FY2020-21 budget is finalized through the end of November. Please review the Org Tree Calendar for the timeline of allowable org tree changes throughout the year. As a reminder, November will be the last opportunity to process approved Org Node and DeptID movements this fiscal year.

  • Please submit questions and requests for changes to the Org Tree to dfl_concierge@berkeley.edu. Note: If you plan to request an Org Node change or Entity Hierarchy redesign, please contact dfl_concierge@berkeley.edu and explain what you would like to change before completing the request form because these changes are typically more complex and involve longer consultations.

Queue commitments for Q2 by Monday, November 30
Please complete the applicable form (linked below) to queue commitments by Monday, November 30 for commitments to be funded in the second quarter of FY2020-21. Please note that the following commitments do not need to be queued: Budget Decisions; EVCP TAS; Star Awards; Bear Grants; Productivity Suite withdrawals and now endowment payouts for rotating chairs (see below). Commitments are processed on a quarterly basis.

Please note that while we're working remotely you must log in through VPN for these forms to work.

Please email dfl_concierge@berkeley.edu with questions.

  • To queue non-faculty commitments, complete the non-faculty commitments form on DFL Knowledge and Resource Portal.

  • To queue faculty commitments, complete the faculty commitments form on the DFL Knowledge and Resource Portal. Faculty commitments are defined for this purpose as Start-up; Retention; ASMD; and Chancellor's Professorships. Chancellor’s Professorships are those that are offered via start-up or retention in lieu of an actual chair - until one can be found, and are funded by central resources. 

    • New this year: Please provide screenshots of UCPath entries for ASMD leave begin dates and ASMD end dates when you queue ASMD funding through the faculty queue.

  • Due to campus delays in processing endowed chairs, the payout for rotating endowed chairs will be late. More information about endowed chairs is available below. 

Submit Department of Finance template on Wednesday, December 2

The next Department of Finance template is due to the Financial Planning & Analysis team by Wednesday, December 2. Please submit your completed template to the DFL Concierge email (dfl_concierge@berkeley.edu) with the subject "COVID-19 Cost Impact" and your division name. Please continue to update the template you submitted last month. Visit the CFO website for frequently asked questions and more information on costs related to COVID-19 and completing the Department of Finance template. If you don't see an answer to your question in the FAQs, please submit your question to vcfinance@berkeley.edu.

Complete External Audit Confirmation for Q2 by Thursday, December 3

To ensure the completeness and accuracy of the quarterly Controller’s report on the campus’ external audit activities, please help us identify campus’ external audit activities. The Controller’s Office is sending a separate email with additional information to DFLs with known external audit activity. By Thursday, December 3, 2020, please submit the materials below to Yohei Azuma at yazuma@berkeley.edu (link sends e-mail):

  1. All DFLs: External Audit Confirmation Form (link is external) (You must return the completed External Audit Confirmation Form even if you do not have any external audit activities so we can certify campus responses.)

  2. DFLs with external audit activities: External Audit Confirmation Template  (Include any related documentation with the template, i.e. notification of the commencement of the audit, audit report, etc.)

If you have questions, contact Yohei by email at yazuma@berkeley.edu.

Report year-end gift recording and receipting by Friday, January 8

The deadline for gifts to be received in the Gift Services office to be counted for the calendar year 2020 is Friday, January 8 2021. Information and instructions are available on this linked flyer or on Berkeley’s advancement intranet Eureka; to review it log into Eureka and visit the Calendar Year End page. The key changes due to Shelter-in-Place conditions include:

  • Campus units may not hand deliver gifts to Gift Services due to building closures.

  • Ask donors to mail gifts directly to Gift Services at 1995 University Ave, Ste 400, Berkeley, CA 94704.

  • Gifts received in campus offices should be sent to Gift Services at the above address by USPS or Loomis armored service only. Please do not use Campus Mail Services.

  • Do not accept credit card information by phone with the intent to transmit to Gift Services for charging. Ask donors to call Gift Services directly at 510.643.9789 to give by phone.

Please contact Gift Services with questions at (510) 643-9789 or gifthelp@berkeley.edu

Informational updates

CalPlanning and Smart View Training

Do you need to learn or enhance your skills in CalPlanning or Smart View? Training classes are available through the end of February 2021. Visit the training page of the CalPlanning website to learn more and sign up. Our new blended learning model combines self-study work that you can do at your own pace with instructor-led group learning sessions where you can apply the material covered in the self-study.

Office Hours for CalPlanning and Smart View

Office hours are available so that you can ask specific questions about CalPlanning and Smart View. Sign up for a session and indicate the topic for which you are requesting support. Office hours are an opportunity to get individual support for a specific challenge your unit is facing; they are not a replacement for training.   

Controller’s Office curtailment processing times are available on the CFO website

The Controller’s Office is planning to observe the upcoming winter curtailment period. ​While specific dates are not yet finalized with UCOP, we’ve estimated deadlines and details based on timeframes that we anticipate in order to help departments in their efforts to submit service requests by year-end. The list of processing times by department is available on the CFO website. If there are any adjustments needed to the deadlines based on further news from Berkeley's People & Culture / UCOP, we will provide an update. The BRS deadlines related to HR and Academic Personnel Support, purchasing and reimbursements, and research administration are available on the BRS website

Clarification on reimbursement for meal expenses for virtual meetings

We have received some inquiries regarding the allowability of reimbursement for meal expenses for virtual meetings and virtual entertainment events. UC Policy, Bus-79, states that meals for virtual meetings or virtual entertainment events are not reimbursable. This policy applies to students, staff, and faculty. Similarly, for a meal to qualify for reimbursement for an entertainment event involving students, staff, and faculty, the policy specifies that there is a host that is physically present at the event. More information about this policy is available on the Accounts Payable webpage. We understand that campus departments are looking for creative ways to support their staff and faculty during this difficult period and we are committed to working with them to find options that are in alignment with that goal while also ensuring policy compliance. 

Please don't hesitate to reach out to the Travel and Entertainment team within Accounts Payable to make suggestions or discuss options at travel@berkeley.edu or entertainment@berkeley.edu.  

Postponed: Payout for endowed chairs held centrally - now until the November ledger
We sent out a message earlier this year about a change we are making to the process for transferring funds for rotating endowed chairs held centrally. While it remains true that DFLs no longer need to provide a budget or queue commitments for the disbursal of these funds, we were not able to transact these on the September ledger, as there are delays in receiving the files of incumbent chairholders. We don’t expect to be able to send funding until the end of November to the divisional allocation DeptID of the chairholder's home division. For those chairs appointed later in the year, please provide the appointment letter through the DFL concierge email dfl_concierge@berkeley.edu  with a request for funding. 

Changes to the DFL in your division?

If the DFL role in your division is changing, email fpa@berkeley.edu to ensure our website, communications, and training plans are updated. 

As a reminder, these updates are regularly posted to the DFL webpage so you can reference past updates at any time. 

Thank you,
Office of the Vice Chancellor of Finance