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FAQs

FAQs

  • General Ascend 2.0 Program FAQs
  • Why are we replacing our financial systems?

    UCLA has decided to implement a suite of enterprise applications in order to achieve increased efficiencies, streamline business processes, support effective reporting, and meet regulatory requirements. The new financial system will be called Bruin Finance (supported by Oracle technology), and the new procurement system will be called BruinBuy Plus (supported by JAGGAER technology). The modern capabilities of the new systems will allow staff to focus on UCLA's core mission, empowered by up-to-the-minute data and robust reporting capabilities.

     

    What will Ascend 2.0 accomplish for UCLA?

    The Ascend 2.0 Program will accomplish the following:                                                                              

    1. Streamlines Procure to Pay by replacing the legacy system with BruinBuy Plus, supported by JAGGAER technology, and implementing process improvements
    2. Modernizes and streamlines financial management by replacing the mainframe financial system with Bruin Finance, supported by Oracle Financials Cloud
    3. Increases efficiency by retiring dated and redundant financial applications
    4. Supports consistent campus-wide reporting and creates a new common language for UCLA’s financial transactions by replacing the Full Accounting Unit (FAU) with a new Chart of Accounts (CoA) and implementing several sub-ledgers
    5. Enables a more robust planning and budgeting process by migrating from Hyperion to Oracle Enterprise Performance Management Cloud

     

    What is Bruin Finance?

    Bruin Finance is an Oracle Applications cloud-based Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, which supports finance, financial project management, procurement, budget, and post-award research administration activities, among others. It is a modern, agile suite of integrated applications, which undergoes periodic updates automatically to improve functionality.

     

    Do we have consultants working with UCLA on the Ascend 2.0 program? 

    Yes, UCLA has partnered with Deloitte Consulting Group and Velocity Procurement Solutions.

                             

    Who is working on the Ascend 2.0 Program from UCLA?

    UCLA has full-time team members who have been driving the project and subject matter experts (SMEs) from several campus departments who are contributing at 25% until implementation. UCLA has partnered with Deloitte Consulting Group to assist with the implementation of Bruin Finance, and they are helping to provide functional and technical expertise for the implementation and integration of the new system. Velocity Procurement is helping with the lifecycle of the procurement transformation. UCLA is responsible for the overall leadership of the Ascend 2.0 program, and for staffing each workstream with subject matter experts to advise the configuration of the cloud and design the future state business processes.

     

    What is the current Program status?

    Currently, the team is onboarding new members, establishing new advisory committees including members from academic units and the academic senate, and learning from UCLA staff impacted by Ascend 2.0. The team has also begun configuring JAGGAER for BruinBuy Plus, holding design sessions for Oracle to prepare for configuration of the new Bruin Finance system, making an inventory of impacted systems, and finalizing the Chart of Accounts. 

     

    How are we preparing for go-live?

    The Ascend 2.0 Training Team will start by providing relevant and timely information throughout the lifecycle of the project. We aim to provide the UCLA community with robust communication and change management activities. Our goal is to promote user confidence and ensure successful adoption before Bruin Finance goes live. As we near the go-live date, we will roll out job aids, QRGs (quick reference guides), online training sessions, and opportunities to drop in for an open lab to experience the new Bruin Finance system first-hand. 

    Stay informed about the project by:

    1. Signing up for the Ascend 2.0 Newsletter

    2. Visiting the Ascend 2.0 website

    3. Watching new videos as they are made available

    4. Attending Town Hall events

    5.Connecting with the Ascend 2.0 Change Community (coming in 2023).   

    6. Emailing your questions to us at ascend2@ucla.edu  

  • Chart of Accounts FAQs
  • What is the Chart of Accounts?

    The Chart of Accounts, or CoA, is the basic structure used to record the financial effects of transactions in Oracle Cloud (Ascend 2.0).

    The future state Chart of Accounts will: 

    • Replace the current Full Accounting Unit (FAU) structure for recording financial transactions

     • Organize UCLA’s finances by segregating expenses, revenues, assets, liabilities, and equity to provide a clear understanding of the university’s financial status 

     • Support financial and management reporting, alongside the Oracle sub-ledger data, by serving as the basis for the fiscal administration of UCLA’s funds, programs, projects, organizations, and activities

     • Serve as the common language for financial transactions

     

    Why do we need a new Chart of Accounts?

    A new Chart of Accounts is needed for the following reasons:

    • The current mainframe system no longer supports UCLA’s financial needs and requires modernization. The current FAU is not supported by Oracle Cloud and requires a redesign.  

    • FAU segments are used inconsistently across campus. This inconsistent use of fields makes meaningful reporting at the broader institutional level difficult. The fields within the new CoA will be strictly defined and controlled to maintain institutional integrity.  

    • Comingling of data within a single FAU field has led to duplication of values and inflexibility in reporting. These “nested” values prevent consistent departmental and institutional level reporting.  

    •  A limited number of remaining values and narrow ranges in some fields (e.g., Fund) has led to the recycling of values, which compromises reporting.  

    • Certain internal reporting capabilities are becoming more important (e.g., activity by interdisciplinary program), but UCLA lacks the ability to determine this information with the current FAU structure.

     

    How did we arrive at the Chart of Accounts structure? 

    The Chart of Accounts (CoA) structure is based on the UC Common Chart of Accounts, prior assessments of UCLA’s CoA, industry best practice, and feedback from key financial administrators representing academic and non-academic areas. The CoA Redesign Team is in the process of deploying a four-phased approach that involves CoA Planning, CoA Structure Enhancement, CoA Value Development, and CoA Mapping Development.

                                               

    What are the key objectives of the Chart of Accounts structure?            

    The key objectives of the CoA structure are to: 

    • Balance the University’s external reporting needs with the schools' local reporting needs

    • Create a common financial language for the institution

    • Increase flexibility for fiscal management and reporting 

    • Improve capacity for tracking fiscal activity of cross-disciplinary programs

    • Scale as UCLA’s business expands and becomes more complex

     

    How will the new UCLA Chart of Accounts compare to the current FAU? 

    The new UCLA Chart of Accounts differs from the current FAU in the following ways:

    • Each core segment (Entity, Fund, Account, Financial Unit, Transaction Class, Program and Portfolio) has a single use with a clear and consistent definition.  

    • Unlike the FAU structure, the CoA has a multi-dimensional, or matrix-style, structure with multiple segments where each segment captures a specific defined attribute of the transaction.  

    • The Oracle Cloud financial system requires that each segment has a value when entering a transaction. For certain transactions, where not all segments are required, the system will auto-populate a default value. In the current mainframe system, the FAU recordings allow some fields to be left blank on certain transactions.

     

    Where can users find all the latest information regarding the Chart of Accounts?

    Information can be found on the Chart of Accounts webpage. As the project progresses, the Ascend 2.0 team will continue to post additional materials to this page.    

     

    Who is affected by this change?

    All financial systems users will be affected by the new CoA in some capacity. Training materials are being developed to aid campus’ adoption of the new CoA. 

  • Procurement FAQs
  • What is JAGGAER?         

    A Procure To Pay (P2P) software solution that provides a modern shopping experience with easy-to-use functionality.   

       

    Why use JAGGAER?

    JAGGAER continues to be recognized as a procurement technology leader by Gartner. JAGGAER provides the ability for end users to use one platform for all of their P2P needs. 

     

    What is the procurement implementation timeline?

     

    The current timeline for the first phase of JAGGAER is October 2023.

    Will I be impacted by the new procurement system?     

    Everyone on campus will be impacted, but all users with the appropriate DACSS roles will have access to JAGGAER for shopping cart creation via Single Sign-On (SSO). 

     

    Will there be training for procurement?  

    Yes! The Training Team will deliver training in phases to meet the needs of end users. Details around end user training for Procurement Release 1 will be announced as it is made available.

  • BruinBuy Plus FAQs
  • What is BruinBuy Plus?

    A modern procurement platform, powered by JAGGAER, configured to reflect UCLA business processes. 

     

    What are the benefits of using BruinBuy Plus?

    BruinBuy Plus provides user a modern purchasing interface, similar to the “Amazon” experience. It also provides enhanced communication tools and increased visibility into the workflow approval process. 

     

    Will Pcard monthly reconciliations be handled by BruinBuy Plus?

     

    No. Pcard will be integrated with Concur.

    Will staff continue to have access to BruinBuy once BruinBuy Plus is implemented?

     

    BruinBuy will remain active, but only for transactions that cannot be completed in BruinBuy Plus.

    Will multiple attachments be allowed in BruinBuy Plus, or will everything need to be merged together in one file like Concur? 

     

    BruinBuy Plus will support multiple attachments.

  • Financials FAQs
  • What is the benefit of Bruin Finance to UCLA?

    Bruin Finance is UCLA's name for the Oracle Financials Cloud system. This implementation will achieve crucial, modern efficiencies; streamline reporting needs; and meet regulatory requirements. It also modernizes campus financial systems and transforms business processes.

     

    Why are we transforming our financial systems?

    UCLA has experienced remarkable growth since the development of the current financial systems. Adopting modern, scalable, cloud-based systems will empower UCLA’s continued growth and enable the transformation of financial operations. This transformation will allow staff to focus on the core mission, empowered by up-to-the-minute data and robust reporting capabilities.

     

    Will the larger UCLA population get hands-on access to explore the new financial system?

     

    Yes, as part of a comprehensive training plan, there will be several training opportunities to see the new system and practice.

     

    What will the Ascend 2.0 program accomplish for UCLA?

    Through the Ascend 2.0 Program, UCLA will: 

    1. Streamline the Procure to Pay processes by replacing the legacy system with BruinBuy Plus, supported by JAGGAER technology  

    2. Modernize and streamline financial management by replacing the mainframe financial system with Oracle Financials Cloud (Bruin Finance)

    3. Increase efficiency by retiring dated and redundant financial applications

    4. Support consistent campus-wide reporting and create a new common language for UCLA’s financial transactions by replacing the Full Accounting Unit (FAU) with a new Chart of Accounts (CoA) 

    5. Enable a more robust planning and budgeting process by migrating from Hyperion to Oracle Enterprise Performance Management Cloud (Bruin Finance)

     

    Where can I find additional information?

    Once relaunched, the Ascend 2.0 website will have additional information regarding this initiative, including timelines. The Ascend 2.0 team also invites you to contact them at ascend2@ucla.edu .

     

    Why did the program name change?

    We are excited to announce the relaunch of UCLA’s efforts to transform our financial systems. The Ascend 2.0 Program, previously known as Ascend, is an ambitious, multi-year initiative to transform the landscape of UCLA’s financial systems. The scope increased and now involves two system implementations (BruinBuy Plus and Bruin Finance) and the transition to the Chart of Accounts.