Department Home page

MISSION STATEMENTS

NEWS

Purchasing News

Procure to Pay Course Online More...

Accounts Payable News

eVoucher Enhancements More...

Travel News

Traveling on UI Related Business Online Course More...

PCard News

ProTrav Updates More...

Procurement Card News


Do you know?
Edition 4 - Vol. 1

REMINDER TO ALL CARDHOLDERS-

Personal expenses on the procurement card are in violation of the procurement card program
Repeated occurrences, even if repaid, are reviewed and may result in card revocation and/or disciplinary action.

Keep Business and Personal Online Accounts separate to avoid personal purchases posting to the procurement card
It is recommended to keep UI business accounts separate from your personal accounts with online vendors such as Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, etc.  Keeping them separate will ensure the procurement card is not inadvertently used for personal purchases and that the items you order are sent to a UI billing address and not your home.

 

TRAVEL POLICY UPDATES-

Reimbursement for Meals while in Travel Status
When meals are provided as part of the conference or meeting, travelers will not be reimbursed for the cost of the meal when the traveler chooses to eat outside the conference.

 

Travel expense vouchers (TEVs) must be submitted within 120 days of trip end date. Travel expenses will not be reimbursed if the TEVs are not submitted within this time frame. Exceptions to this policy must be justified and approved by the Travel Office

  • If a travel expense voucher has been identified as 120 days past the trip end date and at least one out of pocket expense has been claimed, ProTrav will require justification for reimbursement before the trip may be routed or approved in Workflow. The Accounts Payable office will review justification to determine if reimbursement will be allowed. If deemed reimbursable, per IRS guidelines, the reimbursement will be taxable to the traveler.
  • Notifications will generate from ProTrav to the traveler if a trip end date has passed by 30 days. It will state the trip has ended 30 days ago, please claim out of pocket expenses if needed. If there is nothing to be reimbursed, there is nothing more to be done.
  • Reporting features have been added allowing users with access to trips to view Travel Expense vouchers older than 100 days after the trip is complete. The report searches for any unpaid Travel Expense vouchers with at least one out of pocket expense listed. The user may search for trip return dates 100 days-365 days old from the date the report is run. The results provide the user with information regarding the status of the voucher for UI employees and may be exported to Excel.
Questions may be directed to protrav@uiowa.edu.
Edition 3 - Vol. 2

Fraud:

Steps/Questions to ask to determine if a procurement card transaction posted to your procurement card may be considered fraud;
  • Does the transaction seem to have any business related relationship with the University of Iowa?
  • Confirm with others in the department whom you may process transactions on their behalf.

If the vendor is not recognized or unaccounted for in the department the cardholder should immediately follow the steps below.

    • Contact US Bank by calling the number on the back of pcard -   1-800-523-9078
    • Explain that you have an UNAUTHORIZED transaction on your card.  This will alert the bank to start a fraud case for your card.
    • List the vendors/transactions potentially defined as fraud.
    • Contact ProTrav either by email (protrav@uiowa.edu) or phone 335-0115 to report  the potential fraud on your account.  Card will be cancelled in ProTrav.
    • Once this information is received, you will be sent a fraud checklist to ensure all steps are completed for this process.
    • Cut your card in half and send it to Quality Assurance 202 PCO

Disputes:

Steps/Questions to ask to determine if a procurement card transaction posted to your card may need to be disputed with US Bank;

  • Does the transaction seem to have any business related relationship with the University of Iowa?
  • Confirm with others in the department whom you may process transactions on their behalf.

Instances which can typically be resolved through vendor communication include:

  • Incorrect or duplicate charges
  • Sales tax charges
  • Unknown charge to vendor with existing business relationship and no documentation available

A dispute does not need to be initiated if the vendor agrees to resolve the transaction satisfactorily (e.g. agrees to credit the incorrect charge or sales tax, or provide the invoice for an unknown charge). For the Procurement Card Voucher and audit purposes, simply note the situation either in the PCV line comments or with an attachment (e.g. “duplicate vendor billing, will credit within 3-5 business days” would be sufficient for line comments).

A dispute is initiated if the vendor is unwilling or unable to resolve the situation. A dispute form is completed from the Reconciliation screen in ProTrav.  By checking Dispute on the line reconciliation, ProTrav will take you to another window for you to enter the remaining required information on the form.   Once the form is completed, Download and print the form.  Complete the form by adding the 16 digit credit card number and then sign the form before you fax it to the card provider. The fax number is at the top of the printable dispute form.

Once the bank receives the Dispute form, they should send you a letter explaining they are processing your dispute request, if any additional information is needed, they will ask that you fill out some paperwork.  Otherwise, they will give you a temporary credit on your account while they work with the vendor.  If you do not receive any correspondence from the bank within 2 weeks of faxing the paperwork, you will want to call the dispute department to ensure they did receive your form.  Their number is 1-866-540-9904.

If unsure whether a transaction should be disputed or considered fraudulent, send an email to ProTrav@uiowa.edu with the cardholder name, Procurement Card Voucher, (e.g. P0123456) transaction information, and a brief description of the situation. The information will be reviewed and a determination provided on how to best proceed.
Edition 3 - Vol. 1

Purchasing airfare with personal legs of travel when traveling in UI business

If you are booking your flight to travel on business for the University of Iowa and wish to incorporate personal travel with the trip, you will need to purchase airfare using personal funds. You will be reimbursed for the business portion of the trip once the trip is complete.

At the time you book your flight, please obtain a quote of what the business portion of the flight would have cost if it were round trip and only for the actual dates you would have traveled to the business related site(s).

If airfare is paid utilizing the procurement card and not personal funds, the traveler is required to repay the entire airfare expense to the University of Iowa. Once the trip has taken place the traveler may request reimbursement on their Travel Expense Voucher for the business portion of the expense.

Receipt Requirement for Purchases on Procurement Card.

For most procurement card purchases, supporting documentation is required to be electronically attached to the voucher. There are only two exceptions to this rule:
Individual meal while in travel status as long as the meal is under $75.00
Fed Ex and UPS charges where the account is set up through the Accounts Payable office and the appropriate shipping information displays when you click on the Trans Detail button.

Software Acquisition Process

If there is a need in your department to purchase software, you are required to contact ITS.

Here are some facts that we should all be aware of when acquiring software. 

Fact #1:   All software – including shrink-wrapped goods, shareware and free downloads – has a license agreement.

Agreements can come in the following forms:

  • Document signed by both parties
  • Click-through (clicking “I agree”)
  • Document in the box
  • Document in a manual
  • Text “read me” file on the disk
  • Document on the website

These are all legally binding agreements.

Fact #2:  The only person who has authority to sign or authorize these agreements is the UI Director of Purchasing. The Director of Purchasing consults with the Office of the General Counsel before signing these agreements to ensure the interests of The University of Iowa are covered. Generally, individuals, including managers, department heads or deans, do not have proper signature authority to sign and execute contracts on behalf of the University.

To avoid institutional and/or personal liability, license agreements should be evaluated and reviewed from a legal perspective before acceptance. If you sign an agreement, click “I agree”, or agree to terms in any fashion, regardless of cost (including free web downloads), without this evaluation and proper signature process, you may be assuming personal and institutional liability. The potential ramifications include personal financial exposure, disciplinary action, and/or criminal liability.

ITS, with the assistance of the Office of General Counsel and the UI Department of Purchasing, has implemented the Software Acquisition Process to help software users on campus obtain the best pricing and best terms possible. It is important to start conversations with your college or department to define how you acquire software and to contact us so that we can help reduce risks to you, your department and the University.

Software available for departments, http://cs.its.uiowa.edu/software/softwarelistingdept.shtml.

What about software not listed or not currently available?

Software Acquisition Process
Software Request Form (PDF)
http://cs.its.uiowa.edu/software/documents/softwarerequestform.pdf

 

Edition 2 - Vol. 3

The ProTrav Post Audit team has been renamed 

It will now be known as Quality Assurance Team.  The mission of the Quality Assurance Team is to review and assess the ProTrav program and provide recommendations to maintain and improve the security and financial integrity of the program.  The Quality Assurance Team provides analysis and guidance through periodic reports and reviews, based on the policies and regulations set forth by the University of Iowa Operations Manual and State Board of Regents.

New and Improved functions released to ProTrav 2/3/09

Based upon the results of a recent systems survey, and requests from ProTrav users, this upgrade includes improved functionality, new search abilities, data links, improved access requests and much more. 

Disputed Transactions

PLEASE NOTE:

  • US Bank will initiate the dispute process by contacting the vendor’s bank to obtain the requested information.  They will generally send you a letter stating they are working on your dispute request. 
  • If you don’t hear anything from US Bank, it is your responsibility as the cardholder to contact US Bank and check on the status of your dispute.  There are instances where you may have faxed the form, but it never made it to US Bank. 
  • If the dispute is resolved in favor of the cardholder, a credit will be applied to the account.
  • If the dispute is resolved in favor of the vendor, US Bank will forward supporting documentation to the cardholder, which must be submitted to the Accounts Payable department to be filed with the original charge.
  • The dispute should be resolved within two billing cycle.
  • The Cardholder is responsible to pursue the resolution.
Edition 2 - Vol. 2

2Time Table for Year End Processes

ProTrav Travel Vouchers: Travel Expense vouchers to be recorded in FY 08-09 for travel completed prior to June 1 should be in the Accounts Payable and Travel Department by June 8; this includes e-vouchers for travel. Please keep in mind that it takes several days for a voucher to move through all the channels of approval and arrive for processing. Therefore, for travel already ended, this process should be started immediately. For travel ending after June 1, the voucher should be submitted immediately upon return if it is to be processed this fiscal year. Unless travel is occurring in the last week of June, all vouchers that must be processed this fiscal year should be in the Accounts Payable and Travel Office no later than June 15. For travel occurring after June 15, all vouchers that must be processed for this fiscal year must be complete thru workflow and all required documentation submitted to the Accounts Payable and Travel Department no later than 4:30 p.m., June 29, 2009. Questions concerning these dates may be directed to the Accounts Payable and Travel Department, Karen Housel at 5-0409.

Procurement Card Vouchers:

The June billing cycle has been modified in order to accommodate fiscal year spending.
Modified billing cycles:

  • June billing cycle: 05/28/09-06/15/09
  • July billing cycle: 06/16/09–07/27/09

Procurement card transactions that have a POST date on or before 06/15/09 will be processed within FY 08-09. Note: Post date is often days later than the actual transaction date. It's the departments/cardholders responsibility to be sure they are monitoring their account to be sure transactions that need to post to this current fiscal year appear on their Procurement Card Statement on or before 06/15/09.

June Procurement Card Vouchers complete (approved through workflow) by 06/30/09 will post to the accounts (Master File Keys) listed on the voucher.

Procurement Card Vouchers not complete (still in workflow, voucher has an audit error, or voucher not reconciled) by 6/30/09 will post to the cardholders’ "default" account. The default entry can be reversed up until July 14, 09 once the voucher has been approved in workflow and approved by the Accounts Payable Department.

Single Transaction for Procurement Cards Remain at $3,000.00

February 27, 2009 an announcement was sent to Requesters explaining the Purchase Requisitions workflow form Types Changes.  This announcement and change in the way a Requisition is approved did not affect the single transaction limits on the Procurement Card.  The limits on the cards remain the same 10k credit and 3k single transaction.
Edition 2 - Vol. 1

Expiring Cards Training Update

In keeping with industry standards and program policy, all UI cardholders are required to complete Procurement Card training once every three years.  This is to ensure all UI cardholders are kept informed of updated or changed policy.  The date required to complete training coincides with the month and year in which your card expires.

To register for the online ICON course, follow the steps below:

  1. Log into the Self-Service portal: Employee Self Service - Finance and Operations
  2. Go to the Personal tab
  3. Click My Training
  4. Click Available Online Icon Courses
  5. Click Procure Card Training no Recon
  6. Click Enroll in this course
  7. Click Content
  8. Complete all three sections:  Buyer's Perspective, Fundamentals, and Travel

    PLEASE NOTE:  If you exit ICON before completing the course, you may re-access the course through Self Service from the Personal tab by clicking the My Training link, and looking under ICON Courses Currently Enrolled In.

If the refresher course is not completed by the end of the month your card expires, your purchasing privileges may be suspended until course completion. 

Reminders will be sent to cardholders well in advance of card expiration to allow adequate time for course completion.

 Univ. of Iowa Procurement Card Activation Instructions

Procurement cards are set to expire 3 years from the issue month. During the month in which your card expires, a replacement card will be mailed directly to you from the card provider.
Once your card is received, please complete the steps below to activate the card and dispose of the old card.
Activate your new card by calling the number on the activation sticker affixed to the front of the card. An automated activation line prompts you to enter the following information:

    • The 16-digit credit card number
    • Last 4 digits of your University ID 

IMPORTANT: To protect employee social security numbers, the University of Iowa arranged with US Bank to use University ID numbers for card activation. Your social security number will not work.  You will automatically be prompted for your social security number, enter the last 4 digits of your University ID number instead.  Your University ID is found on the front or back side of your UI identification card, depending when the card was issued.  Your University ID is also located in ProTrav. Under the PCard tab, navigate to the My Cards section, locate your name and click the “+” to expand available options. Click the Account Info link to display your University ID.

    • Card zip code and your office phone number

NOTE:  The zip code is located on the tri-fold sheet your Procurement Card is attached to. You can also find this address in ProTrav, under the PCard tab navigate to the My Cards section, locate your name and click the “+” to expand available options. Click the Account Info link to display the zip code and office phone number associated with your Procurement Card. You will need this address for online and phone purchases.

Once your new card is activated, cut your old card in half and campus mail to 202 PCO, attn Quality Assurance Team.
Edition 1 - Vol. 1
  • Procurement card transactions post to ProTrav on a daily basis.  Cardholders/reconcilers are encouraged to view and/or reconcile charges regularly.  This routine process will speed up the month end process and will aide in the detection of potential fraud.  Note Procurement Card Vouchers are due in the Accounts Payable office on the 18th of every month.
  • UI employees can receive travel payments more quickly and help the University reduce costs by electing to receive all travel payments by direct deposit.  If your payroll is direct deposited, travel payments will be sent to the same account.  To direct travel payments to a different account or to set up direct deposit click here.  Click the “Direct Deposit” link under the Payroll tab on the “My Information” page.
  • An acceptable receipt must include the vendor name, what was purchased, the date of the purchase and the dollar amount.
  • If receipts contain the UI procurement card number on them the user should black out the middle set of digits.  This will protect the card number but will still allow our office to determine that it’s a UI card.  This should be done whether you are scanning receipts or sending the actual receipt with your voucher. 
  • For file size and storage reasons, the best format to scan receipts is PDF, but other formats are acceptable.  
  • The traveler/department can check the status of a Travel Expense Voucher online.  Click here for simple instructions.
  • Once final reimbursement is made to the traveler, the trip owner can “close” the trip in ProTrav in order to keep the trip manager more manageable.  This can be done by clicking on the “hide trip” button on the trip manager.  
  • Phone numbers for vendors are often provided on the PCard transactions page under the city heading.
  • If a trip has already been created for specific individual/destination/date, you should not create another trip.  If you need to reconcile, add expenses or additional funding, and do not have access to the trip, please email protrav@uiowa.edu.  Provide the following information; traveler’s name, dates of travel and destination, and reason that you need access.  You will be contacted once we have granted you the access you need.


Amazon Prime

University policy prohibits the use of rewards programs for purchase because there is a potential for using rewards points for personal purchases. Because there is not a way to monitor such rewards in a way that is cost effective, the University's policy is that we should not participate in these programs. The purchase of an Amazon Prime membership falls under rewards programs and is not an allowable expense because this membership is not limited to UI business only and can be used for personal purchases.


Beware of Office Supply Phone Scam

Reports of a new office supply phone scam have come to our attention.

The caller provides a company name and location based within the state of Iowa (e.g. Mason Industries out of Cedar Rapids) and that they are in the process of moving out of state and changing company names (SVT Inc. has frequently been provided as the new name).

The caller states co-workers they’ve spoken to within your office, and lists basic office supplies available for ordering: pens, post it notes, highlighters, etc.  The caller states attractive prices for the office supplies and asks for your Procurement Card number to charge the supplies once they ship your order.

Remember to exercise caution when doing business with any new company or individual. If prices seem too good to be true, they probably are. Do not provide your Procurement Card number if you’re not familiar with a company or feel unsure about a transaction. Additionally, the University of Iowa has a preferred vendor contract with Office Max for all office supply purchases.

Please keep this in mind if you receive a similar type of call or solicitation. ↑top

Expiring Cards

In keeping with industry standards and program policy, all UI cardholders are required to complete Procurement Card training once every three years. This is to ensure all UI cardholders are kept informed of updated or changed policy. The date required to complete training coincides with the month and year in which your card expires.

To register for the online ICON course, follow the steps below:

  1. Log into My Training at http://compliance.hr.uiowa.edu
  2. Locate:  Course # W00PCT Procure Card Training no Recon or Course #W00160 Procure Card Training (either by search or locate within list)
  3. Click View Course
  4. Click Enroll in this Course Session
  5. Click Content (in ICON course once displayed)
  6. Complete the three sections: Buyer’s Perspective, Fundamentals, and Travel, or the 4th section Reconciliation, depending on the course selected

Please note: If you exit ICON before completing the course, you may re-access the course by logging back into My Training and looking under Currently Enrolled Courses.

If the refresher course is not completed by the end of the month your card expires, your purchasing privileges may be suspended until course completion.
Reminders will be sent to cardholders well in advance of card expiration to allow adequate time for course completion.  ↑top


Replacement/Activation Information

Univ. of Iowa Procurement Card Activation Instructions

Procurement cards are set to expire 3 years from the issue month. During the month in which your card expires, a replacement card will be mailed directly to you from the card provider.

Once your card is received, please complete the steps below to activate the card and dispose of the old card.
Activate your new card by calling the number on the activation sticker affixed to the front of the card. An automated activation line prompts you to enter the following information:

  • The 16-digit credit card number
  • Last 4 digits of your University ID

IMPORTANT: To protect employee social security numbers, the University of Iowa arranged with US Bank to use University ID numbers for card activation. Your social security number will not work. You will automatically be prompted for your social security number, enter the last 4 digits of your University ID number instead. Your University ID is found on the front or back side of your UI identification card, depending when the card was issued. Your University ID is also located in ProTrav. Under the PCard tab, navigate to the My Cards section, locate your name and click the “+” to expand available options. Click the Account Info link to display your University ID.

  • Card zip code and your office phone number

NOTE: The zip code is located on the tri‐fold sheet your Procurement Card is attached to. You can also find this address in ProTrav, under the PCard tab navigate to the My Cards section, locate your name and click the “+” to expand available options. Click the Account Info link to display the zip code and office phone number associated with your Procurement Card. You will need this address for online and phone purchases.

Once your new card is activated, cut your old card in half and campus mail to 202 PCO, attn Quality Assurance Team.  Questions, email protrav@uiowa.edu   ↑top


Protect Sensitive Information

The Procurement Card Administration would like to remind all cardholders and reconcilers about protecting your procurement card information and other sensitive information.

Card Security

  • The procurement card should remain in a safe, locked unit unless being used
  • Cards should not be carried in a purse or billfold unless the user is going to be making a purchase or is in travel status.
  • At no time should a photocopy of the Procurement card be made to provide to others.

Document security

  • Mark out:
    1. The first 10 digits of the card number if the entire number is displayed on the receipt
    2. social security number
    3. Any other confidential or private information as outlined through the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPPA).
  • Scanned documents should be stored on a password protected and/or encrypted secure file and/or server.
  • If you must fax your University credit card number (for payment or if you are disputing a charge), make sure your University credit card number is blacked out on the paper after you have completed the fax.

These steps will reduce the possibility of exposure of sensitive information. Protecting your University credit card number as well as other sensitive information will help limit the University’s liability and reduce the chance of fraud or identity theft.   ↑top