Training and Support
Monitoring your monthly and year-to-date (YTD) expenses
Use the financial reporting tool in mySwarthmore to monitor your monthly expenses. To access the module go to myswat.swarthmore.edu and log in with your Swarthmore credentials. This "how to" [pdf] guide will walk you through the steps.
Login to mySwarthmore's budget development portal to reallocate your current budget and submit non-personnel budget requests for the following year. Below, is a simple set of instructions to submit your budget.
1. Login to the mySwarthmore portal.
2. Click on Finance Main Menu, then Swarthmore Budget Development
3. Click the Pencil icon to enter the budget entry form.
4. Reallocate your current budget (the current budget excludes one-time funding). Make sure the column total equals zero ($0.00).
5. Enter your continuing or one-time line item requests along with a reason in the text box.
6. Click Calculate to save your work and see the changes reflected in the FY18 Proposed Budget column.
7. Click Add Account to insert a new account code .
8. Click Submit when you have finished your budget. You can make changes and re-submit as often as you need before the deadline.
More detailed instructions, with screenshots, can be found here [pdf].
Advice for Financial Managers
Review your prior year financial activity
Take the time to review your department’s prior year expenditures in Banner or the Financial Reporting module in mySwarthmore. As you analyze your revenue and expenditures, ask yourself the following questions:
- Did the department have any significant changes in spending? If so, in what accounts?
- Were the changes short-term or part of a long-term trend? (You may need to review more than one-year’s worth of data)
Track your current YTD spending
As a financial manager, you are responsible for monitoring your department's spending. Periodically review your expenses, either monthly or quarterly. If there are significant variances (either positive or negative), report them to your President’s Staff member. This may influence whether you need to make a budget request for next year or simply reallocate your existing budget.
The operating budget, in aggregate, should growth at a rate consistent with the College’s inflation assumption, which is currently 1.8%. This means, you should exhaust all possibilities to fund your requests within your available budget. If your department has endowment or gift funds, consider using these alternative sources if the request aligns with a fund's restrictions. Avoid increasing your budget by a random factor over your prior year funding level. Here are some questions to consider:
- Is there spending in the current year that will not occur in future years?
- Are there new initiatives that will require funding for the first time?
- Will I need to add positions or adjust existing positions?
- Are there space considerations?
- Can I reallocate my existing budget to pay for new initiatives?
- Can I collaborate with another department if we have similar goals?
Gather information from all sources within your department about the budget. If there are opportunities for cost savings, please reflect those reductions. If you need additional resources, please provide an explanation for the increase.
Check your work
Four checklist items to keep in mind before submitting your budget include:
- Do my current budget reallocations net to zero?
- Have I used the correct account codes to submit my budget requests?
- Have I provided a written description in the text box field for each budget request?
- Likewise, do I have an explanation if my total budget increases by more than the College's current inflation parameter?