Supporting Documentation Guidelines for Journal Entries

A new reference guide, Supporting Documentation Guidelines for Journal Entries, has been created to provide additional guidelines, best practices, and examples for including supporting materials for the following journal types:

  • Cash Receipt journals (Source Code 320)
  • Financial journals (Source Code 535)
  • Sponsored Research Cost Transfer journals (Source code 545)

Providing appropriate supporting materials for a financial transaction is an essential element of internal control. Proper documentation gives Journal Approvers adequate detail to ensure a transaction is reasonable and accurate, and helps to satisfy audit requirements.

While many journal entries are created through automatic processes, several types of journal entries are created manually. When manually creating journal entries in PeopleSoft, Journal Preparers must include the following two types of supporting information.

1. Journal Entry Descriptions

All journal entries must contain clear and concise descriptions. Descriptions should be complete enough for journal review and approval. Two types of descriptions are required for all journal entries:

  • Journal Header Description describes the overall journal entry
  • Journal Line Descriptions describe each transaction line

The Journal Header Description (also referred to in PeopleSoft as Long Description) should completely describe the transaction being processed. It should indicate why the journal entry is necessary or what the entry is attempting to accomplish. Examples of information to provide in journal descriptions include:

  • the purpose or nature of the transaction
  • what is being transferred/corrected
  • where activity is being transferred to/from
  • why the original transaction was incorrect
  • a reference to applicable supporting documentation

2. Supporting Documentation

Supporting documentation consists of source documents, supportive calculations, and/or other items necessary to substantiate the accuracy and appropriateness of a journal entry. Supporting documentation must be attached and available at the time the preparer submits the journal entry for approval.

Typical supporting documents include, but are not limited to:

  • general ledger reports
  • net position reports
  • worksheets with supportive calculations
  • copies of source documents such as check requests, deposit slips, invoices, travel expense reports, third party reports/statements, or related emails

While documentation is required, any confidential or sensitive information should be excluded or redacted from supporting materials. User access in PeopleSoft does not limit access to view journal entries and supporting materials.

Note the following contacts if you have questions or need assistance submitting journal entries: