Project and Activity ChartField

Project ChartField

The Project ChartField tracks financial transactions relating to a particular capital project or sponsored research award (SRA) project. Projects are established with a specific start and end date, which does not need to (and typically does not) align with the fiscal year. Projects are established with a specific project budget. 

  • Format: Project is an eight-digit numeric value starting with a 1 (1#######). New projects, whether capital or sponsored, are assigned the next consecutive number.  

  • Status: Project is a conditional ChartField on financial transactions. It is required for  capital projects (M-Funds), SRA (G0001 and G0002 Funds), and other funds to track SRA cost-share, but this is not systematically enforced.

  • Security: Project can be used to establish user security.

Project Costing Business Unit (PCBU)

The PCBU is an operational subset of the COA used to organize project activity. Since project accounting does not align with regular fiscal-year operational accounting, the PCBU allows for budget and other financial rules to lie outside of the regular fiscal-year parameters. While not technically a ChartField, you may be required to enter the PCBU when coding certain project-related transactions. The University recognizes two PCBU’s:

  • CAPTL: Used for all capital projects

  • GRANT: Used for sponsored research (grant) projects

Capital Projects

Capital Projects track the financial activity of a particular new construction, expansion, renovation, or major maintenance project.  In addition to always being used with a Capital Project Fund (M####), capital project expenditures are always used in conjunction with either:

  • Department 13105-FIN-Capital Project Expense; or

  • Department 13107-FIN-OIT Cap Project Expense.

Each capital project expense transaction also requires a Site. This is used to group or link individual capital projects into a particular location, which is necessary for calculating depreciation and other central F&T processes. For more information, see the Site ChartField page.

Sponsored Research Award (SRA) Projects

SRA projects organize and track funding related to a sponsored award. Most awards include just one project, but additional SRA projects for the same award may be created for specific reasons, including:

  • Need for fabricated equipment

  • Different F&A rates, PIs, and/or departments on an award

    • Simons Foundation Investigator Awards (where additional money is provided for departmental use) 

    • Funding supplements when the terms of the supplement are different from the terms of the award

  •  The SRA project’s beginning and end dates are used as the anticipated dates of the award.

Activity ChartField

To aid in project budgeting and financial reporting, the Activity ChartField is used to track specific financial tasks or phases of a project. 

There are eight Activities currently being used:

  • Format: Activity is a three-digit numeric value ranging from 100 through 107. In FY20, value 108 will be introduced, followed by 109-110 in FY21 and FY22 respectively. 

  • Status: Activity is required with any transaction that includes project; otherwise it is not used.

  • Security: Activity cannot be used to establish user security.

  • 100 = Used with all capital projects

  • 101-107 = Used with sponsored research projects. The majority of sponsored projects use Activity 101 only. Subsequent Activities (102-107) are only needed for awards that have annual financial reporting requirements, and/or awards with carry forward restrictions.

Project and Activity ChartField Requests

The creation of new projects and activities is managed centrally by F&T Capital Planning, or by the Office of Research and Project Administration (ORPA). Projects are created at the start of a new capital project or as new sponsored awards are received.