The primary purpose when monitoring expenditure against a UFS budget is to ensure that expenditure does not exceed that budget. The first problem is how to spot where expenditure has, or will, exceed the budget. The easiest way for departmental administrators to spot budget problems is to regularly review the Financial Summary Report.
This report is a summation of all the transaction data in UFS and provides an overview of the current financial position of the School/ Institution/Department. It highlights sources of funds i.e. areas of activity with significant variances from budget.
The Financial Summary Report is produced monthly by the Reporting Team and distributed by email to agreed contacts (e.g. the Head of the School/ Institution/ Department and the Finance contact).
What does the Financial Summary Report show?
This section explains the main terms used in the Financial Summary Report. All references to a "column", "row" or "cell" are with regards to the standard Source of Funds version of the report.
|Annual Budget||The annual budget figure is the total allocation to the source of funds for the whole year.|
|Columns 1-4 detail the Institution's performance in the current financial year|
|"Budget YTD"||column 1||This column shows the year to date budget. In July, no matter how the budget has been phased, column 1 should equal the Annual Budget.|
|"Income"||column 2||This report should show income recorded as a positive number.|
|"Expenditure"||column 3||This report should show expenditure as a positive figure.|
|column 4||This column shows the current "performance" of the institution within the source of funds. It is calculated as the YTD budget plus the income minus any expenditure. A negative figure indicates an overspend and a positive figure shows a favourable position.|
|Columns 5-9 detail the accumulated overall financial position of the source of funds, including cash in hand, money on deposit, amalgamated fund units and other investments.|
|"(Overdrawn)/Cash in Hand"||Column 5||This column represents the current cash balance for each source of funds, excluding money on deposit (Column 6) and CUEF fund balances (column 7). This figure represents previous year end surpluses or deficits as well as the current year performance, which encompasses budget, income and expenditure.
Negative or overdrawn balances in this column require investigation and resolution.
|"Total"||column 9||This column is the sum of Columns 5 (overdrawn/cash in hand), 6 (money on deposit), 7 (CUEF balances) and 8 (Other investments). This total is important because it represents the overall financial position for each source of funds. A negative figure in this column represents an overall negative resource and could be indicative of a worsening financial position.|
Columns 10 and 11 are primarily there for reference.
"Reconciliation to CUFS" (column 11)
|This column adds together the balance sheet totals and the cash in hand position and should reconcile with the bottom line of the Budget compared to the Actual report for the source of funds.
It is a memorandum column, primarily to ensure that the financial summary report reconciles with the data held on the UFS system. Institutions will not routinely need to refer to this column.
The Grand Total row is simply an addition of all the lines above it.
This row best summarises an Institution's financial position (excluding Research grants contracts buildings projects and depreciation).
How to read the Financial Summary Report
The first thing to check when reviewing this report is whether or not there are significant variances in column 9 as this summarises the financial position for the source of funds.
The issues to be considered are:
- Is the financial position on the source of funds deteriorating or improving?
- Is the variance due to a timing difference?
- Is a deficit on one source of funds matched by a surplus against another because expenditure has not been coded against the relevant income?
All deficits in column 9 require investigation and resolution.
The next thing to check is the significant variances in column 4, which reports how the source of funds is doing in the current financial year. Two particular patterns of surplus/deficit are worthy of note.
- A surplus in this column and a deficit in column 9 represents a current year surplus which is insufficient to cover a brought-forward deficit. This indicates that the financial position on the source of funds is probably improving and, that over a period of time, the account may return to surplus.
- A deficit in this column and in column 9 indicates an account may be in trouble.
If the deficit in column 9 arises from an in-year deficit (column 4 is also negative) and particularly if column 5 was also negative, the account is in trouble. Whilst this does not mean that the activity on the account must cease, as not all activity has to be in surplus, it does require management. As the income is insufficient to cover the expenditure it will need to be subsidised from other financial resources available to the Institution.
Available versions of the Summary Report
The prime version of this report is in source of funds order. This version has been approved by Council as the official document which must be signed off by Heads of the Institution as giving a true picture of the financial activity of their institution during the year.
However, there are also other summary reports which provide slightly different management information that are available on request from the Reporting Team.
|Source of Funds Summary Report||A||It groups transactions by source of funds enabling the user the view the performance of an individual source of funds account.
The official document which must be signed off by Heads of the Institution as giving a true picture of the financial activity of their institution during the year.
|Cost Centre Summary Report||B||Groups transactions by cost centres enabling users to view the balance on individual cost centre accounts.|
|"Long" Source of Funds Summary Report||C||Groups transactions by source of funds and then by cost centres within the source of funds.
It illustrates how much of a contribution each cost centre is making towards the overall balance on the source of funds.
|"Long" Cost Centre Summary Report||D||Groups transactions by cost centres and then by source of funds within the cost centres.
It illustrates how much of a contribution each source of funds is making towards the overall balance on the cost centre.
|"Wide" Source of Funds Summary Report||E||Groups transactions by source of funds and by transaction codes.
In particular it provides more information on income and expenditure categories.