What is UR Financials?

To view Frequently Asked Question answers, click on the appropriate question to see the section expand for the response. Click on the question once more to close the expanded view.


Listed below is a partial definitions list associated with the UR Financials and the Financial Data Model. For additional terms, please visit the Financial section of the Data Cookbook.

Grants Management:

Accounting Date -The accounting period it will be posted to in UR Financials

Award – The Award captures attributes to correctly bill, collect and report activities related to a sponsored agreement. Frequently referred to as the Terms and Conditions (T&C)

Award Amendments – Mechanism to allow modifications to an award such as incremental funding, extended award period, no cost extension, etc.

Award Budget – The financial framework for an award by object class, including revisions approved by the sponsor. Award budgets are not created for contingent grants and nonfederal clinical trials

Award Date – Award Start Date

Award Purpose Codes – Used to explain the purpose or focus of the award. For example: Clinical Research, Instruction, Organized Research, and Sponsored Programs

Award Schedule – Represents the life of the Award and is the background for billing and reporting

Award Type – Grant/Contract in FRS

Billing Schedule – Required for billing (types of billing allowed and how often can be billed, i.e. budget dates)

Budget Date – The date the service was provided, materials/supplies delivered, or charge was incurred. If a service is provided for a period of time, use last date

Budget Structure – Now referred to as Plan Structure in the UR Financials system.  Used to designate the reporting structure type within the Award Budgetary Balance Report (NCL) URF0840

Cost Share Total – From Form 150

Facilities and Administration – Facilities and Administration costs (also known as Indirect costs) are general institutional expenditures that are incurred for multiple or shared projects, functions or activities and therefore cannot be specifically identified with relative ease and with a high degree of accuracy to a sponsored award, an instructional FAO, or any other institutional FAO

FDM – Financial Data Model; encompasses the combination of FRS accounts, sub-codes , divisions, and departments. The organization of accounting codes used to classify expenditures, revenue sources, assets and liabilities. Also known as the Chart of Accounts (COA). This includes accounts, subcodes, departments

Financial Activity Object (FAO) – A category of worktags used to indicate the authority area responsible for funds. One of the worktags in this category must be entered or selected on every transaction. There are six Financial Activity Objects: gift, grant, project, operating program, loan program, and debt service

Fund – Required on every operational transaction and accounting journal.  Will be auto balanced in Workday (2nd balancing worktag)

FAIN – Represents source of funding and net asset classification. Charges to grants default to the Sponsored Awards – Unrestricted fund, ie Federal Award Information Number

Grant – Workday uses the grant worktag as the primary cost and revenue collector for an award. If you want to charge against a grant on a purchase order, you use the grants worktag. If you want to recognize revenue on the award, you use the grants worktag. Similarly, if you want to charge finance and administrative expenses to the award, you will use the grant worktag. The Grant Worktag is used as the primary cost and revenue collector for an award line. Usually begins with GR5#####.

Grant Year Number – Project Year in FRS

Object Class – Used to meet your sponsor’s requirements for facilities and administration management, controlling expenses, and reporting. A list of object class codes and descriptions will be created for each of our sponsor’s cost categories

Plan Structure – Previously referred to as Budget Structure in the UR Financials system.  Used to designate the reporting structure type within the Award Budgetary Balance Report (NCL) URF0840

Primary Award Line – Master Account Number in FRS

Revenue Category – Used to identify the different types of revenues posted by the Company. When using a revenue category, a ledger account will automatically be derived by configuring the account posting rule set

Spend Category – Used to provide a more granular view of the expenses incurred by the Company. When using a spend category, a ledger account will automatically be derived by configuring the account posting rule set

Sponsor – Takes responsibility for and initiates a research/clinical investigation. May be an individual or pharmaceutical company, governmental agency, academic institution, private organization, or other organization

Sponsored Award Types – Used to identify various types of Awards for reporting purposes. For example, Contract, Cooperative Agreement, Financial Aid, Grant, Sub-recipient Agreement

Worktag – Attributes attached to transactions that are grouped using common identifiers or functions. Allows detailed reporting and filtering capabilities, ie FAO (GR5#####), Spend or Revenue Category, Fund, Sponsor, etc.


TC-Q13: How do I get Access to UR Financials?


A13: For individuals who only need to run financial reports in UR Financials and need access, it’s as easy as 1, 2, 3!

  1. Complete the UR Financials Workday Access form
  2. Complete the Introduction to UR Financials eLearning course and pass the test in Blackboard with a grade of 80%, or higher
  3. Complete the Non Company Level Reporting class and pass the test in Blackboard with a grade of 80%, or higher


TC-Q11: Are UR Financials’ newsletters archived on the website?


A11:  Newsletters are sent twice a month to a Listserv distribution based on feedback from our Demo Days presentation in December, 2013.  Content included in all newsletters are highlights and links to new posts/articles which occurred in the 2 weeks between newsletter distribution.  All posts referenced in the newsletters can be found on the UR Financials News page.


PJ-Q1: What is UR Financials (Workday) and why did the University of Rochester choose it?


A1: UR Financials (Workday) system is a unified (integrated) administrative information system for financial management, human resources and related business functions.  The University has chosen to implement the financial management components of Workday; providing the UR Financials project an excellent tool to replace the current Financial Reports System (FRS).  It is a cloud-based SaaS (Software as a Service) solution.  This means that the system is operated off-site while University of Rochester users utilize the service over a standard and secure internet connection.

The University of Rochester chose UR Financials as a form of risk mitigation which will carry on the business requirements provided by the current FRS system.  The legacy system, in place for over 40 years, is becoming increasingly vulnerable to functional and technical obsolescence with rising costs for upkeep and integration maintenance.  Because Workday is a cloud-based solution, it is easier, quicker and less-costly to implement and operate than traditional enterprise systems.

PJ-Q2: How do I get more information on the project?


A2: Regular updates will be posted to this website.  A schedule of upcoming events, training opportunities and announcements will be posted as the project progresses. If you require more information, feel free to reach out to the project team through the Contact Us link of this website.

PJ-Q3: Are we running FRS and UR Financials (Workday) in parallel at Go-Live?


A3: No.  Because of the changes in terminology as well as the connection of the interfaces into UR Financials (Workday), it is not feasible to run both systems in parallel.

PJ-Q4: What is the timeline for implementing Workday software?


A4: Phase I of the UR Financials (Workday) project will begin with four main sections: General Ledger, a new Chart of Accounts (COA), Accounts Payable, and Grants Accounting.  These will be part of the new Go-Live date that is being determined at this time.  Phase II will include additional finance business processes still to be determined and is tentatively scheduled for a release prior to July 1, 2015.

PJ-Q5: Are other universities and medical centers adopting Workday?


A5: Yes.  As a matter of fact, the University of Rochester is a member of the Workday University Advisory group with other universities, namely Brown University and Georgetown University.  The advisory group collectively works with Workday to provide enhancement requirements for needed functionality.

PJ-Q6: Who will be participating in the business design review sessions?


A6: Representatives from University divisions and affiliates are participating in the business process workshops.  These attendees will be providing input into the design of each “future state” process flow.  Additional subject matter experts will be involved in the process providing valuable suggestions/recommendations for the creation of UR Financials (Workday) processes.

PJ-Q7: Is UR Financials (Workday) connected to other recent and upcoming changes (ICD-10, eRecords, etc.)?


A7: The University of Rochester is dedicated to keeping current with technological advances and opportunities with sustainability and risk mitigation as stabilizing factors of growth.  The eRecords implementation successfully upgraded the medical information practices of the University Community while ICD-10 will assist with medical coding and definitions.  Those two initiatives are examples of the University’s commitment to quality service.  UR Financials (Workday) is another step forward by the University to install forward-thinking technology while retaining business effectiveness.  It’s a great example of the University caring about its entire community: internal employees and external suppliers, vendors and business partners.