format_list_bulleted Topic Overview

Managing Aging and Outstanding Expense Transactions

Certain types of expense transactions create Stanford payment obligations before they are actually posted to a PTA with a business justification. These transactions must be managed to ensure they are posted to an account/fund (PTA) in a timely manner to comply with Stanford policy and federal regulations and to support financial stewardship of the university's resources. Stanford Financial Management Services (FMS) conducts a quarterly force clearing process to support the university in these efforts; view Policy: Clearing of Aging Transactions for details and the quarterly clearing schedule.

This overview describes the processing workflow of the main types of transactions which undergo the aging process and provides guidance and tools for managing aging and force cleared transactions. The types of transactions include:

  • Credit card charges: Payments to suppliers using a Stanford issued Purchasing Card (PCard) or Travel Card (TCard).
  • Advances: Funds disbursed to a Stanford employee or student in advance of an expense being incurred, which are later reported in an expense request.
  • Reimbursement of personal funds: Requests for repayment of personal funds that were used to pay for university business and travel expenses, which are submitted via expense reports.

60-day deadline and definitions of aging, outstanding, and cleared

Aging: An expense transaction begins aging on day one until it is submitted and approved locally (by its local school/unit). An aging transaction is considered overdue 60 days after a specific point that depends on the type of transaction: the credit card posted date for PCard expenses, the last day of travel/activity for TCard expenses, or the expected clearing date for advances. After this 60-day deadline, it is subject to force clearing by Stanford Financial Management Services (FMS).

Outstanding: When expense transactions but have completed local school/unit approval but are pending approval and processing by FMS, the transactions stop aging but are considered “outstanding” in Oracle Business Intelligence (OBI) aging reports.

Cleared: An aging or outstanding transaction is considered fully cleared when it is paid and posted to an appropriate PTA.

Force clearing of aging transactions

If a transaction has not been cleared within the 60-day timeline as described above, it may be included in the next quarterly force clearing cycle that FMS administers. Budget units will be charged $35 for each transaction that is force cleared, and repeated force clearings may result in individual card suspension. View Policy: Clearing of Aging Transactions for the quarterly force clearing schedule and Updated Card Suspension Process to Support Proper Use for details on individual card suspension and requesting reactivation reactivation.

Tax reporting of aging transactions

Per IRS regulations, transactions that are not submitted within 60 days of being incurred may be reported as taxable income. Transactions need to reach “submitted” status (or “verified” status for PCard) for local approval in Oracle Financials with all appropriate receipts or backup documentation within 60 days to comply with IRS regulations.

Please note that the timeline for how transactions are determined for force clearing may differ from the timeline that determines if the transaction needs to be tax reported. While a transaction will not be tax reported because it reached initial submission in time, it could still be force cleared if the remaining steps to completely clear the transaction take too long. Alternatively, a transaction may be tax reported because it took longer than 60 days to reach initial submission for local approval, but was not force cleared because the remaining steps of the transaction happened before the next force clearing deadline.

Purchasing Card (PCard) transaction aging starts at the credit card posted date and ends when it completes local approval, which immediately causes the charge to post to a PTA and be cleared from the aging report.

PCard verifiers process PCard transactions through the PCard module. PCard expenses should be verified and approved as soon as practicable after they are incurred (typically within 10 days), but no later than 60 days after they are incurred (the credit card posted date).

Failure to submit a PCard transaction for local approval (shown as “Verified” status in the PCard module) within 60 days of the credit card posted date may result in expenditures being reported as taxable income to the card user or cardholder.

Additionally, if a PCard transaction is not completely verified and approved within that timeframe, the transaction may be force cleared by FMS to the guarantee PTA. Repeated force cleared transactions on a PCard may result in card suspension; see Policy: Stanford Purchasing Card (PCard).


Workflow: PCard Transaction Processing

The following graphic shows stages of processing a PCard transaction, who is responsible at that stage, the statuses in the system, and how aging is calculated.

PCard processing and aging workflow diagram
  1. Verify PCard transaction
    This is done by the PCard verifier and includes transactions with the status of "New" or "Returned." Refer to How to: Verify PCard Transactions
  2. Approve or return
    This is done by the approver(s) when the status is "Pending Approval."
  3. Posted
    Once a transaction is fully approved it will post to the PTA(s), the status will show as "Approved," and the transaction will no longer appear in aging reports.

Managing Aging PCard Transactions

Several tools are available to help preparers, approvers, and finance staff manage aging transactions:

1. Find and monitor aging PCard transactions

  • Transaction verifiers and approvers: View all PCard transactions that are pending approval and where they are included in their workflow using the Pending Transactions Tool (available under Oracle Financials Inquiry Tools).
  • Financial managers and analysts: Use the OBI Credit Card Transactions - Aging Report to identify and monitor aging PCard transactions.

2. Clear aging PCard transactions
Prepare, verify, and approve PCard transactions in a timely manner.

Manage credit card profiles using:

For further assistance:


Managing Force Cleared PCard Transactions

Departments should take the following actions after an aging PCard transaction is force cleared.

  1. Find force cleared PCard transactions
    See How To: Find Force Cleared PCard and TCard Transactions

  2. Create and store documentation set
    1. Create a business purpose and scan the receipt (if the receipt is missing, create a document explaining the reason).
    2. Find the credit card transactions in Oracle Financials using the PCard search and upload the documents.
       
  3. Determine and repay any amounts owed to Stanford
    1. Determine the business amount charged: Amounts expended for Stanford business should be explained in the business purpose and remaining amounts should be defined as for personal use and repaid to Stanford.
    2. Determine and repay any personal expenses to Stanford; please see How To: Handle Personal Expenses Charged to the PCard.
      1. Request a check from the cardholder and deposit it. As with returning unused advance funds, send the check to the Payment Services team.
      2. Submit a support request to Card Services.
        State that a personal expense that was force cleared has been repaid and include the following information: Last four digits of the PCard, transaction ID, and proof of deposit.
      3. Upload documentation showing the deposit took place.
        This will usually occur after the initial documentation set is uploaded. Upload the backup documentation for the final deposit to the PCard transaction that was force cleared. This documentation supports audits and proves that the repayment was made.
  4. Move charges to appropriate PTAE if needed
    Use iJournals to move charges to an appropriate PTAE as needed, using an unallowable expenditure type for any amounts that do not have an explicitly allowable business purpose. Attach the documentation set to the journal as well.

  5. Identify ways to prevent future force clearing
    Use the OBI Force Clear Metrics (FCM) Dashboard to see summary-level reporting of force cleared transactions, which can suggest where training or policy reinforcement may be needed to avert future force clearings.

Travel Card (TCard) transactions start aging from the credit card posted date or, if supplied, the expense end date (the date travel or activity will be completed). Once the TCard transaction is applied to an expense report, aging is calculated from the expense request end date. TCard transaction aging ends when the expense report has completed local approval.

TCard verifiers process TCard transactions through the Expense Requests system (ERS) via expense reports; TCard charges appear in ERS within one to five business days of the transaction date. Expense reports should be completed and processed within 10 days and no later than 60 days after the completion of travel or activity.

Failure to submit a TCard transaction for local approval within 60 days of the completion of travel/activity may result in expenditures being reported as taxable income to the card user or the cardholder.

Additionally, if a TCard transaction is not completely approved within 60 days of the credit card posted date or expense end date (if supplied), the transaction may be force cleared by FMS to the guarantee PTA. Repeated force cleared transactions on an individual TCard may result in card suspension; see Policy: Stanford Travel Card (TCard).


Workflow: TCard Transaction Processing

The following graphic shows stages of processing a Travel Card transaction, who is responsible at that stage, the statuses in the system, and how aging is calculated.

Travel Card processing and aging workflow diagram
  1. Incur expense(s) on TCard
    This is done by the card holder to initiate a TCard charge.
  2. Apply TCard transaction to an expense report
    This is done by the transaction preparer and includes transactions with the status of In Progress, Withdrawn, Rejected, Returned, or Pending Resolution. Refer to How To: Create Expense Report for SU Payees. If a purchase is for an activity in the future (e.g., airplane ticket for later travel), verifiers can enter an expense end date to reflect the accurate number of days of aging; see How To: Manage Travel Card (TCard) Expense End Date.
  3. Submit expense report
    Once all entries are complete, the preparer submits the transaction.
  4. Approve, request more info, or reject
    This is done by the approver when the status is Pending Approval.
  5. Approve, return, or reject
    This is done by the Business Expense team when the status is Pending Audit Review.
  6. Submit for payment/reimbursement processing
    This is done by Accounts Payable (AP) when the status is Pending Payment.
  7. Paid and posted
    Once an expense request is fully approved and AP has processed the payment, the transaction will post to the PTA(s), the status will show as Paid, and the transaction will no longer appear in aging reports.

Managing Aging Travel Card Transactions

Several tools are available to help preparers, approvers, and finance staff manage aging Travel Card transactions:

1. Find and monitor aging TCard transactions

  • Transaction preparers and approvers: View all TCard transactions that are pending approval and where they are in their workflow using the Pending Transactions Tool (available under Oracle Financials Inquiry Tools).
  • Financial managers and analysts: Use the OBI Credit Card Transactions - Aging Report to find and monitor aging TCard transactions.
  • Note: TCard charges will continue to appear in TCard aging reports even after they have been added to an expense report, but the aging reports will show the expense request transaction number. Both the TCard charge and expense report will be visible in aging reports until the expense report is posted to a PTA.

2. Clear aging TCard transactions
Prepare and approve TCard transactions in a timely manner.

Manage credit card profiles using:

For further assistance:


Managing Force Cleared Travel Card Transactions

Departments should take the following actions after an aging Travel Card transaction is force cleared.

  1. Find force cleared TCard transactions
    Please see How To: Find Force Cleared PCard and TCard Transactions.
     
  2. Create and store documentation set
    1. Create a business purpose and scan the receipt (if the receipt is missing, create a document explaining the reason).
    2. Find the expense request on which the TCard transactions were force cleared using the Expense Requests system search and upload documents.
       
  3. Determine and repay any amounts owed to Stanford
    1. Determine the business amount charged: Amounts expended for Stanford business should be explained in the business purpose and remaining amounts should be defined as for personal use and repaid to Stanford.
    2. Determine and repay any personal expenses to Stanford; please see How To:  Return Personal Expenses Charged to Travel Card.
  4. Move charges to appropriate PTAE if needed
    Use iJournals to move charges to an appropriate PTAE as needed, using an unallowable expenditure type for any amounts that do not have an explicitly allowable business purpose. Attach the documentation set to the journal as well.

  5. Identify ways to prevent future force clearing
    Use the OBI Force Clear Metrics (FCM) Dashboard to see summary-level reporting of force cleared transactions, which can suggest where training or policy reinforcement may be needed to avert future force clearings.

Advances are processed through the Expense Requests system (ERS). When an advance is requested, the preparer is required to enter an expected clearing date, which should be set to the date the department expects to clear the advance funds in an expense request and should be no more than 10 days after the last day of travel or activity.

Advances start aging from the expected clearing date and must be cleared within 60 days of the expected clearing date. An advance is considered cleared when: the full amount of the advance (not only a partial amount) has been applied to an expense request, the expense request has been approved, funds have been posted to a PTA, and any unused funds have been returned and received by the university.

Failure to clear or return an advance within 60 days of the expected clearing date may result in expenditures being reported as taxable income to the payee.

Additionally, if an advance has not been cleared within that timeframe, the remaining balance of the advance may be force cleared by FMS to the AP Default PTA. Finally, future advances may not be available to a recipient who has not fully cleared a previous advance.


Workflow: Advance Transaction Processing

The following graphic shows the stages of processing advances, who is responsible at that stage, the statuses in the system, and how aging is calculated.

Advances processing and aging workflow diagram
  1. Apply advance to an expense request and submit
    This is done by the transaction preparer when an advance is being applied to a new expense request in ERS. Refer to How To: Request and Clear an Advance.
    Any unapplied advance amounts must be repaid to Stanford to clear the transaction from the aging report. Refer to How To: Return Unused Advance Funds.
    Note: The OBI Advances - Aging report will not reflect that an advance has been applied to an expense request until the expense request is fully approved.
  2. Review by financial approver(s): Approve, return (request more info), or reject
    This is done by the approver when the status is Pending Approval.
  3. Audit by Business Expense: Approve, return, or reject
    This is done by the Business Expense team when the status is Pending Audit Review.
  4. Submit for payment/reimbursement processing
    This is done by Accounts Payable when the status is Pending Payment.
  5. Cleared and posted
    Once the expense request(s) that an advance or partial advance amount has been applied to completes its workflow, the advance amounts will post to PTA(s) as part of the expense request(s). If an advance is only partially applied, it will continue to appear in aging with rows showing amounts for each expense request it is applied to. Once the full amount of the advance has been applied, it is considered cleared and no longer appears in the aging report.
    Note: The status of an advance shows “Paid” once the requester has been paid the advance funds, but this status does not change or reflect the status of the expense request to which the advance has been applied.

Managing Aging Advances

Several tools are available to help preparers, approvers, and finance staff manage aging advances:

1. Find and monitor aging advance transactions

  • Transaction preparers and approvers: View all advances that are pending approval and where they are in their workflow using the Pending Transactions Tool (available under Oracle Financials Inquiry Tools).
  • Financial managers and analysts: Use the OBI Advances - Aging Report to identify and monitor aging advances that have not been completely cleared.

2. Clear aging advance transactions
Prepare and approve advances in a timely manner.

For further assistance: If you have questions or need help clearing an aging advance, please submit a support request.


Managing Force Cleared Advance Transactions

Departments should take the following actions after an aging advance is force cleared.

  1. Find force cleared advances
    Please see How To: Find Force Cleared Advance Transactions
     
  2. Create and store documentation set
    1. Create a business purpose and scan the receipt (if the receipt is missing, create a document explaining the reason).
    2. Find the original advance transaction number using the Expense Requests search and upload the documentation set.
       
  3. Determine and repay amounts owed to Stanford
    1. Determine the business amount charged: Amounts expended for Stanford business should be explained in the business purpose and remaining amounts should be defined as for personal use and repaid to Stanford.
    2. Determine and repay any personal expenses to Stanford
      1. Collect a check from the payee and deposit it. As with returning unused advance funds, send the check to the Payment Services team.
      2. Upload documentation showing the deposit took place. This will usually occur after the initial documentation set is uploaded. 
         
  4. Move charges to appropriate PTAE if needed
    Use iJournals to move charges to an appropriate PTAE as needed, using an unallowable expenditure type for any amounts that do not have an explicitly allowable business purpose. Attach the documentation set to the journal as well.
     
  5. Identify ways to prevent future force clearing
    Use the OBI Force Clear Metrics (FCM) Dashboard to see summary-level reporting of force cleared transactions, which can suggest where training or policy reinforcement may be needed to avert future force clearings.

Reimbursements are requests for the repayment of personal funds processed on an expense report through the Expense Requests system (ERS) by transaction preparers. Reimbursements start aging from the expense date (date incurred), or for travel expenses, from the last date of travel/activity for which the expense was incurred. Aging ends when an expense report is submitted and completes local approval. After that, the transaction is considered “outstanding” until it reaches “Paid” status and is posted to a PTA.

Expense reports should be completed and approved as soon as practicable after charges are incurred or travel is completed (ideally within 10 days, but no later than 60 days afterwards).

Failure to submit an expense report within 60 days of the date a transaction is incurred may result in expenditures reported as taxable income to the individual incurring the expense; see Topic Overview: Reimbursements and Expense Reports.

Transactions that have been submitted for approval and have no rejections are typically processed in a matter of days. However, in some cases a transaction can stop progressing in its workflow; see Resource: Resolving Outstanding Expense Requests and Aging Transactions for guidance on how to resolve problems based on the current status.


Workflow: Expense Requests System (ERS) Transaction Processing

The following graphic shows the stages of processing an expense request, who is responsible at that stage, the statuses in the system, and how aging is calculated.

Expense request processing and aging workflow diagram
  1. Initiate and prepare transaction
    This is done by the transaction preparer and includes transactions with the status of In Progress, Withdrawn, Rejected, Returned, or Pending Resolution.
    Note: Expense Requests transactions that have been saved but never submitted by the transaction preparer (status in ERS is “Saved”) do not appear in OBI aging reports, but the expenses included on them may still be aging.
  2. Approve, request more info, or reject
    This is done by the approver when the status is Pending Approval.
  3. Approve, return or reject
    This is done by the Business Expense team when the status is Pending Audit Review.
  4. Submit for payment/reimbursement processing
    This is done by Accounts Payable (AP) when the status is Pending Payment.
  5. Posted to PTA
    Once an expense request is fully approved and AP has processed the payment, the transaction status will show as Paid, the transaction will post to the PTA(s), and the transaction will no longer appear in aging reports.

Managing Expense Requests

Several tools are available to help preparers, approvers, and finance staff manage expense requests that include aging transactions:

1. Find and monitor expense requests

  • Transaction preparers and approvers: View all expense requests that are pending approval and where they are included in their workflow using Pending Transactions (available under OBI Financial Inquiry Tools).
  • Financial managers and analysts: Use the OBI Expense Requests - Aging Report to identify and monitor expense requests that include aging transactions.

2. Clear expense requests
Prepare and approve expense requests in a timely manner.

For further assistance:

Oracle Business Intelligence (OBI) Dashboard Landing Page

The Expense Requests and SU Card Activity Dashboard includes reports about aging, outstanding, and cleared credit card transactions, advances, and expense requests.

Role-based Resources for Finding Transactions

Use these charts to find information about the status of credit card transactions, advances, and expense requests. Access to this information varies by role.

How to Find Aging and Force Cleared Transactions

Role How to Find Aging Transactions How to Find Force Approved Transactions
Cardholder or Transaction Processor Oracle Financials Tool: OBI Dashboard Report: N/A
Approver Oracle Financials Tool: OBI Dashboard Report: OBI Dashboard Report: OBI Dashboard Report:
Department Manager OBI Dashboard Report: OBI Dashboard Report: OBI Dashboard Report:
Senior Associate Dean (or equivalent) N/A N/A


How to Find Transactions in Any State and a Summary of Activity

Role How to Find Transactions in Any State How to Find a Summary of Activity
Card Holder or Transaction Processor OBI Dashboard Report: N/A
Approver or Department Manager OBI Dashboard Report: OBI Dashboard Report:
Senior Associate Dean (or equivalent) N/A OBI Dashboard Report:
Last Updated: Jul 7, 2024