OracleAppsBlog
A day in the life of an Oracle Applications Consultant

Applications 11.5.9

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

The Oracle Financial Information Systems (FIS) Project at University College London (UCT)

This post contains a link to the Oracle Financial Information Systems (FIS) website at University College London (UCT) and also mentions the key features of the site.

The Financials Systems Project site at the University College London (UCT) provides readers with a comprehensive understanding of what it takes to implement an Oracle Applications System. The site gives readers a holistic view of all the aspects of Enterprise Systems Implementations. UCT initially implemented the following modules of Oracle Application 11.0.3 and later upgraded to 11i : -

  • General Ledger
  • Accounts Payable
  • Purchase Ordering
  • Accounts Receivable
  • Grants ( including Project Costing and Project Billing)
  • Fixed Assets
  • Inventory

Following is a review of the key areas of the site:

FIS Project

This section of the site provides an overview of what the FIS project and has related information categorised as follows: -

  • Information on the use of the site
  • What is the FIS Project?
  • FIS Team Members
  • Useful Contact Information
  • Migration Plan
  • FIS Service Times
  • FIS Users Group
  • 11.0.3 Enhancement Stage Plan
  • FIS Technical and Business Consultancy 2003
  • Upgrade to Version 11i
  • FIS Newsletters
  • FIS Training Dates

Procedures, User Guides and General Reference

This particular section of the site is probably one of the most useful areas as it contains project documentation which has been categorised in to the following areas: -

  • General Reference and Procedural Notes
  • User Guides for the following modules: -
    • Accounts Payable
    • Accounts Receivable
    • Fixed Assets
    • General Ledger
    • Grants
    • Inventory
    • Purchase Ordering
  • Other User Guides
  • Technical Guidance
  • How To…?

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Download Oracle Documentation

This post contains a link to a site where you can download a comprehensive range of Oracle Documentation.

Certainly I might be stating the obvious but I thought it would be good to have the information on this site. This Oracle Technology Network (OTN) page contains Oracle Documentation for the following key technology areas: -

  • Database
  • Development Tools
  • Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence
  • On Demand
  • System Management
  • Application Server
  • Oracle Collaboration Suite
  • Technologies / Utilities
  • Applications / E-Business Suite

Of interest to Oracle Apps users will be the online documentation CD which can be downloaded for each release of Oracle E-Business Suite from R11 to R11.5.9

Friday, July 23, 2004

Oracle Financials R11.5.9 at Stanford University

Recently I came across the Oracle Financials site at Stanford University. This post contains a review of the various sections of the site.

The Oracle Financials Site at Stanford University is an excellent resource for anyone interested in learning and reading about Oracle Financials implementations. Being a University, the site gives you a good idea of how Oracle E-Business Suite can be implemented in a Higher Education Institute. It’s also interesting to note that Stanford has recently upgraded to the latest version of Oracle E-Business Suite, namely R11.5.9. You can read about Stanfords Upgrade from 11.5.8 to 11.5.9 here. The Oracle Financials System site is categorised in to the following sections: -

  • Learning Centre
  • Chart of Accounts
  • According to this page: -
    The Chart of Accounts is the underlying structure for organizing financial information at Stanford. Stanford adopted a new Chart of Accounts along with the new Oracle Financials system in 2003. News and general information about the Chart of Accounts and associated issues may be found here.
    In the news item "What is the Chart of Accounts" the University explains: -
    The Chart of Accounts is the set of codes used to classify and record financial transactions in meaningful ways. These codes enable Stanford to: -
    • identify specific “pots” of money; 
    • specify what that money may be used for; and 
    • record the transactions related to that money

    By fulfilling the above functions, the Chart of Accounts also: -

    • facilitates financial reporting;
    • provides a framework for understanding the financial results of Stanford’s operations; and
    • controls how financial transactions and balances are collected and stored in the Oracle system

    Under this news item you will also find the Universities Chart of Accounts Segment Structure as well as mapping tables and spreadsheets which outline how the legacy Chart of Accounts translates to the new structure.

     

  • Authority
  • Reporting
  • iJournals
  • Purchasing
  • Reimbursements
  • Labor Distribution
  • PCards
  • Sunflower

Monday, June 14, 2004

Understanding constraints (ceilings) in Oracle Public Sector Budgeting (PSB)

The objective of this post is to explain in more detail certain concepts relating to constraints. In particular I will be looking at thresholds and severity levels and explaining how they work.

According to the Oracle Public Sector Budgeting documentation, “Constraints are used to notify users regarding specific conditions for account ranges, elements, or position sets. For example, users can be notified if the total expense for a range of accounts exceeds a particular dollar amount.

  • Account constraints are used to prevent budget amount violations for line items.
  • Element constraints are used to prevent modification of element rates for a selected group of positions.
  • Position constraints are used to prevent element cost violations for selected positions or positions that are assigned to invalid element options”.
  • Constraints (otherwise known as ceilings in most of the Government organisations I have implemented in) are used to place limits on budget estimates. In Oracle Public Sector Budgeting, estimates are prepared in budget worksheets and after these estimates are prepared they are checked against constraints or ceilings that have been put in place by the relevant authorities.

    The screen shot below shows the constraint setup screen in Oracle PSB. 

    Setting up Ceilings/Constraints in Oracle Public Sector Budgeting

    One of the concepts I struggled to understand was severity levels and thresholds and how these worked together. I felt that the Oracle documentation was a bit weak in this area and did not clearly define how these two settings worked together. In the next couple of paragraphs I will attempt to clarify how these “parameters” work.

    Essentially two types of ceilings exist, namely: -

    Hard Ceilings (can also be referred to as absolute)

    This occurs is the threshold is less that or equal to the severity level. In the diagram shown, lines two (“General Fund”) and three (“Finance FTE”) would be classified as hard ceilings.

    If a ceiling is hard, when a budget worksheet preparer submits a worksheet for review, a constraint violation will be produced and the user will be required to amend the violation to the worksheet and then re-submit it. Essentially, the worksheet will remain stuck with the preparer until such time as he ensures the constraint violation is rectified.

    Soft Ceilings (can also be referred to as advisory)

    This occurs if the threshold > severity level. In the diagram shown, line one (“Budget Dept”) would be classified as a soft ceiling.

    In this instance, when a budget worksheet preparer submits a worksheet for review a constraint violation will be produced, however, the authoriser will still be able to work on the worksheet and post it to the General Ledger. Essentially, a warning message will be produced that there is a constraint violation but this will not stop the worksheet going through all the remaining processes needed to post it to the General Ledger.

    Note: If the severity level is left blank then it is assumed to be less than the threshold level.

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