Search This Site

We're Moving!

Checkout our new home on!

This site is being migrated to the new UVAFinance site and will be removed on 3 September 2021.  You can find us at:

UVAFST Glossary

The terms in the FST Glossary were compiled and defined in order to improve communication across UVAFST functional areas. The need for this was identified through the Transformation Opportunities Initiative (TOI) in the fall of 2020. The UVAFST Glossary is distinct from Workday Words in that it focuses on terms outside of Workday. Ultimately, this glossary will strengthen UVA's shared understanding of the terms and concepts that are central to UVAFinance, which will catalyze strategically informed decision-making.


Accruals: Revenues/expenses are recorded when earned/incurred rather than when cash changes hands. In future state, accruals will be recorded in the financial reporting book.

Actuals: Actuals refers to transactions that are posted against the Actuals Ledger in Workday. They contain the information required toprepare the financial statements.

Book Code/Books: Book Codes are subsections of the ledger where accounting results from original journal entries are stored. Book codes can be combined to form a book that is used for reporting. In WD, most transactions are recorded in the blank book code or the Common Book. Year-end adjustments are recorded in the Year-End Adjustments book code and combined with the blank book code to form the Reporting Book. Additional books include the financial reporting book, which includes the blank book, fixed assets, year-end adjustments, and financial reporting adjustment book codes.

Budget: The financial condition and strategic and administrative plans of an organization that include information on sources, uses,activities, and purposes or goals. An estimation of sources and uses over a specified future time period and is usually compiled and re-evaluated on a periodic basis. Note: within a fiscal year, adjustments to the Budget are facilitated via the Forecast process.

Budget Model: A Budget Model is a quantitative system or approach used to support resource management within an institution. Budget models are not financial accounting systems and neither create nor diminish capacity. The budget model is a management tool and the university community must understand the model, be willing to operate within its parameters, and have planful discussions with academic and administrative leadership to realize the benefits it is designed to provide. Note: the budget model at UVA is called UFM (see definition below).

Carryforward: Carry-forward balances are in-year fund surpluses or deficits (shortfalls) which can be carried over from one fiscal year to the next or subsequent fiscal years and then used to cover expenses.

  • If the unit owns the fund source, a surplus (deficit) carries forward into the unit's expendable fund balance.
  • If the unit does not own the fund source, there are two options:
    • if the fund balance is not transferred, the unit is granted spending authority to spend against the fund source.
    • if the fund balance is transferred, the surplus (deficit) could be swept back to the owner's expendable fund balance per r agreement or at the owner's discretion.

In the future, a commitment tracking process will enable budget requests/commitments once approved to become part of the operating budget through an end date.

Cash and Cash Equivalents: Cash and cash equivalents include bank accounts, petty cash, and marketable securities with maturities of less than 90 days. At UVA, cash and cash equivalents are tracked and managed by Treasury at the enterprise level; balances in bank accounts should tie to the General Ledger. Said another way, no unit but Treasury and Accounting works with cash. Operating units do not hold cash. Instead, they hold expendable fund balances (refer to the definition).

Equipment Trust Fund (ETF): Funds that are provided and managed by the Commonwealth of Virginia for purchasing new or upgrading obsolete equipment used for instruction and research. Refer to the fixed asset guide for more details.

Expendable Fund Balance: The expendable fund balance represents a unit’s available cumulative net position / retained earnings, inclusive of operating surplus (deficit), or carryforward. In order to appear as an expendable fund balance, the amount must appear in the General Ledger. Note: On June 30, expendable fund balance only includes actuals; any other time, it includes all WD obligations and WD commitments, therefore what is truly expendable.

FDM: The Foundation Data Model (FDM) is the basis for accounting and financial reporting in Workday. The FDM replaces UVA's Oracle EBS Chart of Accounts (CoA) in the implementation of Workday and supports the multi-dimensionality of Workday. Contains elements known as worktags (i.e., ledger accounts, spend categories, program, etc)

Fund: Also often referred to as the color of money, funds are pools of money differentiated by sources and constraints placed on the use of the resources. E.g., state vs local fund, restricted, restricted expendable (earnings on endowment or gifts), unrestricted, etc.

Ledger: Ledgers store university transactions from journal entries used for managerial and external reporting. The ledger includes accounts for assets, liabilities, net position, revenues, and expenses also known as the FDM (this is the UVA chart of accoun t). In WD, there is an Actuals, Commitments, and Obligations ledger.

Spending Authority: Budget authority that authorizes expenses for a particular use and/or time period that are financed by another unit's expendable fund balance. Permission to spend when the expendable fund balance is not transferred. Synonymous with authorized spending in deficit (for non-interest bearing scenarios).

UFM: The University Financial Model (UFM) is UVA’s budget model, based on Responsibility Center Management (RCM) budget models. It incorporates incentives and activity drivers to support responsive and transparent revenue and cost allocation methodologies intended to align resources with strategic priorities. Budget models like RCM are used to strengthen an institution’s long-term planning and fiscal stability.

Workday Commitments: Accounting related to funds for future known or expected spending. In the context of purchasing, commitments represent issued requisitions. Commitments are stored in the commitments ledger in WD. UVA is not turning on the payroll functionality for commitments. Payroll commitments refers to vacant positions only; see "Workday Obligations" for filled positions.

Workday Obligations: Accounting related to funds that represent obligations to pay. In the context of purchasing, obligations represent encumbrances due to issued Purchase Orders. In context of Payroll, this is pay information pertaining to filled positions.​ Obligations are stored in the Obligations ledger in WD.