The University of Memphis

Authorized Signatures for Financial Transactions



POLICIES

Issued: July 13, 2012
Responsible Official: Vice President for Business & Finance
Responsible Office: Business and Finance Support Services

Policy Statement


 

The University grants by position title the authority to approve certain financial transactions and employee time and leave reporting. It is the responsibility of each financial manager to control all financial transactions against assigned organizations to ensure that they conform to University policy.  Employee time and leave reporting to Payroll or Human Resources must be approved by financial managers or designees.

Financial managers may appoint other individuals to act on their behalf.  Two levels of approving authority are provided.  A "designee" has the same authority as the financial manager and an "approver" can only be granted the authority to approve invoices, cash reimbursements, and transfer vouchers. 

The financial manager granting the authority retains complete responsibility for any action taken by the individuals appointed.  Designees/Approvers are appointed by organization.

Tennessee Board of Regents guidelines for delegation of approving authority must be followed.  For example, the authority to approve contracts cannot be delegated.

A designee cannot approve matters relating to the financial manager.  Such items must be approved by a higher authority.

Under no circumstances will another person be allowed to sign the name of an approving authority.  For example, a designee signing for the financial manager should always sign his or her own name, not the name of the financial manager.

Facsimile signatures (stamps) may not be used.



Purpose


 To outline the authority and responsibility attached to signatures, including electronic approvals, on financial documents and employee time and leave documents.  Establish a procedure for creating and maintaining information on individuals authorized to approve financial transactions and employee time and leave reporting for established areas of responsibility.  


Contents

Definitions
Procedures
Related Forms

Definitions


Acknowledger

An individual appointed by a financial manager who is responsible for reviewing and acknowledging time and leave information prior to final approval by the financial manager (Web Time Entry approver).


ApproverAn individual appointed by a financial manager to act on his/her behalf when approving invoices, cash reimbursements, and transfer vouchers only.  

DesigneeAn individual appointed by a financial manager to act on his/her behalf when approving financial transactions.  This person is called a proxy when approving time and leave reporting.  

Financial ManagerAn individual designated by his/her position title the authority to approve financial transactions or time and leave reporting.  When approving time and leave reporting, the financial manager is known as the Web Time Entry approver.

Proxy

An individual appointed by a financial manager to act on his/her behalf when approving time and leave reporting.  


Spectrum FinanceThe University's administrative system containing data related to accounts payable, purchasing, equipment, grants accounting, budget, document processing and financial reporting.  

Spectrum HRThe University's administrative system containing salary budget data; employee demographic, payroll and benefit data; account labor and benefit charges; time and leave; and Employee Self-Service.
  


Procedures


Appointment of Designees/Approvers/ Proxies/Acknowledgers

The financial manager may appoint academic or administrative/professional employees as a designee to act with the same authority as the official making the appointment.  The designee will also act as the proxy for time and leave reporting.  The financial manager may have different individuals defined as designee for financial matters and as proxy for time and leave reporting. 

The financial manager may appoint individuals, including clerical/ support positions (known as approvers) to approve invoices, cash reimbursements, and transfer vouchers only.

The financial manager may appoint individuals, including clerical/support positions (known as acknowledgers) to review and acknowledge employee time and leave information prior to final approval by the financial manager (WTE approver).

To appoint a designee, approver, proxy or acknowledger, the financial manager should complete the "Request for Designee/Approver/Proxy/Acknowledger Authorization" and send it to the Office of Business and Finance Support Services.  All designee appointments will automatically be granted access to Spectrum Finance and Spectrum HR.  All Approver appointments will be granted access to Spectrum Finance only; if Spectrum HR access is required, please submit a Request for Spectrum HR Access form.  All Proxy (only) and Acknowledger appointments will be granted access to Web Time Entry only.  If Spectrum Finance or Spectrum HR access is required, please submit the appropriate request form.


Change of Designees/Approvers/ Proxies/Acknowledgers

Designees, approvers, proxies and acknowledgers will not automatically become invalid when a financial manager changes.  Financial managers should use the authorization form to delete and/or add new Designees/Approvers/Proxies/Acknowledgers.  Be sure to note whether the appointment is for a designee, approver, proxy or acknowledger and give the name of the individual being replaced. It is the financial manager’s responsibility to notify BFT of any changes.


Financial Managers/Designees/ Approvers/Proxies/ Acknowledgers for Restricted Funds

The project director of a grant or contract has the same authority as a financial manager and, therefore, may appoint designees, approvers, proxies and acknowledgers in the same manner as described above.

    

Change in Financial Manager

An "Appointment of Financial Manager" form should be submitted when the senior official directly responsible for a department or activity is changed.  The notice should be approved by an official at least one level higher than the financial manager being changed and sent to the Office of Business and Finance Support Services.     


Change in Organizational Assignment

When an organizational unit (department or activity) is shifted from reporting from one unit to another or when a new unit is being established, a "Change in Organizational Unit" should be submitted to the Office of Business and Finance Support Services by an authority authorized to approve organizational changes.  This shift may be from one department to another, from one dean/director to another, or from one Provost/Vice President to another.

When changing an organizational unit from one to another, it is important to remember that the FOAPAL determines the distribution of payroll data as well as accounting/budgeting data.

If a significant reorganization occurs, this form may be submitted as a cover form, with signature, and organizational charts or other explanatory documents attached on the organizational unit.


Change in Name/Title of Responsible Unit or Department

The "Change in Organizational Unit" is also used when the name or title of the unit or department changes.  This request must be approved by an authorized official and sent to the Office of Business and Finance Support Services and the Office of Financial Planning.    


Inquiry for Authorized Officials

The Request for Designee/Approver/Proxy/Acknowledger Authorization form on Business and Finance Support Services; Form Web site has information that will direct the financial manager to the appropriate location to assist in determining whether changes or modification to the existing structure or approval appointments need to be made.  Detailed information by the organization's financial manager, designees, approvers, proxies, acknowledgers and the organization’s reporting assignments all the way up to the presidential level is available.  You may view this information on the Spectrum Finance Program Guide.



Related Forms


Appointment of Financial Manager http://bf.memphis.edu/forms/tech.php  

Request for Designee/Approver/ Proxy/Acknowledger Authorization

http://bf.memphis.edu/forms/tech.php


Request for Spectrum Finance Accesshttp://bf.memphis.edu/forms/tech.php

Request for Spectrum HR Accesshttp://bf.memphis.edu/forms/tech.php

Change in Organizational Unit

http://bf.memphis.edu/forms/tech.php

 

  


Revision Dates


 UM1303 - Issued: July 13, 2012


Subject Areas:

AcademicFinanceGeneralHuman ResourcesInformation TechnologyStudent Affairs
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