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Actuals Journals

Actuals journals can be done at any time and are used to handle a variety of transactions. Most are done to:

  • Correct the record of a completed transaction
  • Collaborate internally by transferring funds
  • Compensate your department for internal sales
  • Conduct business involving agency funds

See Training & Resources in our FSM Finance Sharepoint (NetID required) to access training videos related to finance training, budgeting and forecasting.

Journal Types

Each of the most commonly used actuals journals, listed below, involves a different type of transaction. To create or search for any of the journals types, go to NUFinancials through the NUPortal, then go to Portal Actuals Journal.

 Correction Journal

A corrections journal is used for corrections of chart strings or accounts from previous journals (except for internal sales journals and transfer journals). When correcting an expense, the chart string to be credited (wrongly charged) will have a negative (‐) sign and the chart string to be debited (correct charge) will have a positive (+) sign. When correcting revenue, positive/negative signs will be reversed.

To locate the original journal ID number, refer to the Find the Original Journal ID job aid.

 Internal Sales Journal

An internal sales journal is used for any of the following:

  • The sale of goods or services from one Northwestern unit to another
  • A correction of an internal sales journal
  • To transfer funds to a Student Organization Finance Office (SOFO) chart string (in this case, use revenue account code 50699)

The seller creates the journal, and the buyer approves it via workflow. The seller’s revenue code (5 series) will have a negative (‐) sign, and the buyer’s expense code (7 series) will have a positive (+) sign.

 Transfer Journal

A transfer journal is used to move funds from one chart string to another. When creating a transfer journal, the chart string to be credited (receiver of funds) will have a negative (‐) sign and the chart string to be debited (giver of funds) will have a positive (+) sign.

Please refer to Feinberg Transfer Codes for help in choosing account codes for your transfer journal. Transfers can only be corrected on transfer journals.

 Agency Journal

An agency journal is used to record university transactions involving one or more agency chart strings. In NUFinancials, “agency” refers to an external organization with a chart string inside the University Chart of Accounts.

At least one line of the journal must have an agency chart string with a fund in the 7XX series. Allowable account codes are external revenue accounts in the 40000 series and other expense accounts in the 70000 series. The journal may record agency revenue or agency expenses.

Journal Upload Spreadsheet

Spreadsheet journals are an easier way to enter actuals journals with many lines.  Unlike the previous procedure (Mask ID process), the current procedure is subject to workflow approvals.  See NUFinancials: Creating a Spreadsheet Journal Training Guide for the journal template and step-by-step procedure instructions.

For questions about the template or procedure, please contact Financial Operations.