Re: Procurement Support and Resources
Feb. 5, 2021
Dear Colleagues,

As we work through the first months of transition to the Oracle financial platform, we want to point you to resources and support from Procurement and related areas that will help you and your teams.

Please be mindful that school staff as well as staff in central teams and CBS2 are under a tremendous amount of pressure during this transition period and are working long days to process requests as quickly as possible. Please bring empathy, kindness and respect to your interactions. They are doing their best to help you. We are only four weeks into a massive transition that will produce significant long-term benefits for research and teaching.

Over time, the new systems will enhance the university’s ability to provide services to faculty and staff. Procurement is now streamlined in Oracle and fully integrated with real-time reporting, budget validations and real-time synchronization to the Chart of Accounts and project setups.

With Oracle, the number of catalogs has grown and will continue to expand to meet faculty needs and streamline direct ordering. While the CBS2 General Purchasing Request  remains an option to request purchases to be processed on your behalf, faculty and lab members are encouraged to complete relevant Oracle training and become familiar with the systems to streamline their day-to-day catalog purchasing needs.
Here are the resources available to you, along with answers to some frequently asked questions.

Use the Go-Live Toolkit
The Alpha Financials Go-Live Toolkit is your primary source for training, how-to guides and other resources. Connect with process area experts via Zoom-based office hours. Follow the Toolkit’s Procurement link under Process Area Reference Materials to access a collection of resources, such as short videos and how-to guides on processing requisitions.
Alpha Financials Town Halls
Two town halls are scheduled that will demonstrate Oracle modules and give participants an opportunity to ask questions of product owners. The town halls are scheduled for 1-2 p.m. Feb. 12 and Feb. 25 (details to come). If you have questions you want to submit ahead of time, please do so by Feb. 10. Here is a list of contacts.

Procurement Demonstrations
There are several demonstration sessions scheduled that will show how to shop and submit requisitions to Bobcat Buy Powered by Oracle. There will be a question-and-answer session after each demo. Each one-hour session starts at 3:30 p.m. Additional sessions will be scheduled as needed to support research and faculty procurement.
  • Feb. 9 – ID: 818 3562 7310; Passcode 507551
  • Feb. 10 – ID: 825 1624 5719; Passcode: 064464
  • Feb. 11 – ID: 818 5224 1692; Passcode: 245742
  • Feb. 16 – ID: 875 9760 6059; Passcode: 767209
  • Feb. 17 – ID: 861 3845 3560; Passcode: 715963
  • Feb. 18 – ID: 881 9607 9814; Passcode: 019981
Center for Business Services and Solutions
Our CBS2 shared services team, which works every day in the new Oracle-based systems, is providing small-group support on how to use the platform for catalog ordering. Sessions can be scheduled through your Chief Administrative Officer. You can always submit a General Purchasing Request with CBS2 for a purchase to be processed on your behalf.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the easiest way to purchase an item?
Submit a purchase request through ServiceNow. You can use your old (pre-Oracle) account number. School staff and CBS2 will assist with translation to the new Chart of Accounts (CoA) and POET details. Please note this translation may add to the processing time; orders submitted with new account information (now called CoA or POET strings) can be processed faster. The current wait time is 5-7 days, but could be longer because of the volume of orders and new systems’ learning curve. As our teams become more comfortable with the systems, processing times will improve.

How can I directly procure from a catalog what I need for my lab?
You and your team members or staff can shop from catalog content in more than 25 catalogs, assign accounting information, and directly submit your purchase requisition into workflow. Visit the Alpha Financials Go-Live Toolkit to access resources and required training. You also can go directly to the Procurement folder in the Toolkit to access short videos and how-to guides.

How do I or my team members access Procurement in the Oracle platform?
Follow these steps to assign someone as a catalog requisitioner who can shop directly from within Oracle. The individual must:
How do I get the accounting information (CoA and POET) I need to make purchases?
For accounts not associated with a project, reach out to your school’s business officer for guidance about new CoA strings that replaced FAUs. For information about POET strings, which are associated with a project (such as grant or contract), reach out to the research administrator who manages your grant. Once you have this information, you can save this as a favorite account in Oracle for easy use with future requisitions. You also can submit a ServiceNow ticket to Project Portfolio Financial Management. To learn more about the CoA and POET segments, please visit the Go-Live Toolkit.

Thank you for your patience as we all become comfortable with these cutting-edge tools. Please remember that the Go-Live Toolkit is your best source for resources, how-to guides and live assistance. Together, we will leverage these news systems to amplify our research and teaching.
Take care and be safe,

Kurt Schnier
Interim Chief Financial Officer
Kim Groesbeck
Interim Assistant Vice Chancellor / Controller
Josh Dubroff
Chief Procurement Officer