About the Office of Finance

The Office of Finance is responsible for the overall direction and coordination of the financial affairs and financial management of the University. This is achieved through the collaboration of the Director of Finance/University Bursar and his management team with the Vice-Chancellor, the Principals, the Pro Vice-Chancellors, the University’s Senior Management and the management teams of the campuses. More specifically the Office of Finance, in conjunction with the Bursaries of the campuses, monitors the day to day financial and accounting functions and operations of the University.

 

The Office also has direct responsibility for managing the financial affairs of the offices of the Open Campus, and the Centre Departments located at the campuses as well as supporting and monitoring the new and ongoing initiatives of the Vice-Chancellor.

 

Highlight of Activities - Strategic Plan 2007 - 2012

The Office of Finance was very involved in all the stages of the development of the Strategic Plan, and played a leading role in the development and coordination of the financial projections for all the emerging Themes and Enablers. The Office will, in conjunction with the Office of Planning and Development, continue to be engaged in the alignment of current resources, and the identification andacquisition of new resources to finance the Plan.

 

Biennium Budgets

Annually,the Office of Finance coordinates the University’s budget process, from the issuing of the Budget Guidelines to the meetings of the Grants Committees. The Budget Guidelines set out in detail the procedures to be followed in preparation for the Biennium Budgets. It also includes the Budget Cycle which shows the targeted dates for the completion of the various steps.

 

Financial Reports

Consolidated Financial Reports of the campuses and the Centre with accompanying Financial Statements were presented to the meetings of the University Finance and General Purposes Committee (F&GPC) in October 2009, February 2010, and May 2010.

 

Discussion is ongoing with the campus management on improving significantly the timeliness of the inflow of information from the campuses so that reports can be completed and circulated to members of F&GPC at least one week before the meetings. Similar discussions have also taken place with respect to the delays in the preparation of the Annual Financial Statements of each entity, and the Consolidated Financial Statements, and the consequent delays in the external audits of these Statements.The Vice-Chancellor has requested the Principals and the Chairpersons of the Audit Committees to assist in the resolution of the foregoing problem.

 

Banner Finance Update

Banner Finance software, widely used by universities, provides the accounting services for the University of the West Indies. The following modules of Banner have been successfully implemented: Accounts Payable, Accounts Receivable and Cashiering, Fixed Assets, Stores, and General Ledger. 

SunGard, owners of the software, visited the University to conduct training sessions on the Research Module.An upgrade to version 7 will facilitate the testing of this module.

The Banner Summit was attended by representatives from all the campuses and the University Centre. The interaction with staff members of other universities was invaluable, as this provided the opportunity to form informal support groups for the administration and use of Banner.

The University is considering the use of a report writer, ARGOS,to enhance the use of Banner in the preparation of Financial Statements. An evaluation pack has been received from e-Visions, suppliers of the software, and is
being tested.