Identifying and Clearing Suspensed Payroll Transactions

Each month, when a payroll transaction attempts to post to an invalid chartstring and fails PeopleSoft combo edit, the transaction will route to the Payroll Suspense Account. These payroll transactions are commonly referred to as “in suspense”. Central Payroll is responsible for clearing the Payroll Suspense Account so that all payroll transactions are correctly posted to the General Ledger. Central Payroll works in close collaboration with departments and Human Resources (HR) to clear suspended payroll transactions. Departments are also responsible for working with HR in a timely manner to correct future distributions and prevent continued suspended payroll transactions.

Identifying Suspended Payroll Transactions

After the final pay compute for the month (see the payroll calendar):

  1. Run the “Distribution of Payroll Expense (DPE) Report” and the “Transaction Detail Report (TDR)” in MyReports.
  2. Compare payroll activity in the two reports to identify payroll transactions that are in suspense:
    • The DPE report will display all payroll activity on the intended chartstring regardless of whether the chartstring is valid or invalid.
    • The TDR will only display payroll that has successfully posted to a valid chartstring.
    • Payroll transactions that appear on the DPE report but not on the TDR have routed to the Payroll Suspense Account.
  3. Contact the Controller's Office Solution Center if you have identified payroll transactions that were routed to the Payroll Suspense Account and you have additional questions.

Clearing Suspended Payroll Transactions to the General Ledger

Payroll transactions that do not pass PeopleSoft combo edit are routed to the Payroll Suspense Account. Central Payroll transfers the suspended payroll from the Payroll Suspense Account to alternate (valid) chartstrings via a monthly suspense correction financial journal. The payroll suspense journal is a single journal comprised of all suspended payroll expenses for all departments for the specific month. Correcting individual departments’ suspended entries is not currently possible. The payroll suspense journal debits the valid appropriate chartstring(s) and credits the Payroll Suspense Account.

Central Payroll works with departments and HR to determine the appropriate valid chartstring(s) for each payroll transaction in suspense in order to clear the Payroll Suspense Account. It typically takes two months to clear a payroll suspense journal, but the time may vary depending on the number of suspended journal lines and analysis needed for a particular month.

Departments identify the appropriate and valid chartstring(s) for suspended payroll and process a Payroll Expense Transfer (PETU) to debit the valid chartstring(s) and credit the original invalid chartstring(s). Credits to the original invalid chartstring(s) will again fail PeopleSoft combo edit and be routed to the Payroll Suspense Account. Central Payroll transfers the suspended credits to the alternate valid chartstring(s), offsetting the duplicate debits on the valid chartstring(s)and correcting the DPE.

Sample Typical Clearing Process and Timeline

Month Action

July

  • The original expense is charged to an invalid chartstring. A July month-end expense posts to DPE, but the invalid chartstring fails PeopleSoft combo edit and is suspended and routed to the Payroll Suspense Account. The invalid chartstring does not post to the GL and does not display on the TDR.
  • The error is reviewed and an alternate chartstring is identified with the help of the department or HR (response time varies).

August

  • Central Payroll transfers the suspended payroll to the alternate chartstring via the monthly suspense correction financial journal.
  • Meanwhile, the department works with HR to correct employee distributions so future expenses do not continue to be erroneously charged.
  • The department also processes a Payroll Expense Transfer (PETU) to move the original expenses to a valid chartstring.

September

  • Credits from the PETU attempt to post to the invalid chartstring but fail combo edit again and are routed to the Payroll Suspense Account. Central Payroll transfers the credits to the alternate chartstring provided by the Department or HR.
  • The erroneous payroll “washes” (debits and credits net to zero) under the alternate chartstring and debits from the PETU place the expenses on the correct chartstring. All errors are now corrected and resolved, and the payroll is corrected in all related systems.

Identifying Payroll Suspense Journal Transactions in the MyReports Transaction Detail Report (TDR)

The transaction Journal ID is displayed on the TDR and can be used to identify the source and type of transaction. Expenses processed through the DPE display with Journal ID PR##D10, where ## is the corresponding accounting period. Entries to correct suspended payroll have Journal ID PR##D10X, which is the Journal ID of the original payroll journal with a letter(s) added to the end. The following example shows how these transactions are displayed in the Transaction Detail Report:

Original payroll journal (March General Ledger)

Original payroll journal (March General Ledger)

 

Suspense correction for March payroll (May General Ledger)

Suspense correction for March payroll (May General Ledger):

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