format_list_bulleted Topic Overview

Purpose and Use of Org Codes

Organizational (org) codes are a way of defining Stanford's multilevel organizational structure. This page provides an overview of the purpose and use of org codes. 

Stanford University organizational charts (org charts) are documented in the Administrative Guide policies:

The president is responsible for the management of the university and all its departments, including the operation of the physical plant and the administration of the university's business activities. The provost, as the chief academic and budget officer, administers the academic program (instruction and research in schools and other unaffiliated units) and university services in support of the academic program (student affairs, libraries, information resources, and institutional planning). 

The university is made up of a hierarchy of many organizations all working together in fulfillment of the university’s mission of research, education, and service.

The university’s financial account structure identifies each organization by a four-character alphabetical org code. The basic function of the Stanford University Org Code Hierarchy is to define parent-child organizational relationships and group information, such as employees and financial data. 

All applications used at Stanford (e.g., Oracle Financials, PeopleSoft Human Resource Management, Tidemark Budgeting, and numerous other systems) share the same org code values.

Org codes are used to:

  • Prepare detailed business unit budgets.
  • Assign staff (salary) or projects/tasks/awards to an organization.
  • Report on revenues, expenses and fund balances for an organization.
  • Consolidate and report university financial statements.

All transactions and PTAs need to be assigned to what is known as a leaf or child org (the lowest level possible for an org), otherwise Oracle Financials and PeopleSoft transactions will not flow properly and downstream systems will be impacted.

This includes:

  • Projects, tasks, and awards (PTA segments)
  • Sponsored awards
  • Employee records in PeopleSoft

Several resources are available, including the Stanford University Org Code Tree View, to help budget officers and analysts, financial transaction preparers and approvers, and financial report users find and interpret org codes. Refer to Topic Overview: Find Existing Org Codes.

Changes to the university org code hierarchy must be carefully planned and executed. For this reason, only authorized budget officers may submit change requests. To learn about categories of org code change requests, best practices, consulting services, the annual timeline for requests, and the request process, refer to Topic Overview: Request New or Change Existing Org Codes.

Last Updated: Apr 6, 2023