Procurement Training & Resources
The Procurement Department offers resources on Stratus Financials functions through a series of detailed self-help documents in PDF format and selected videos.
Please review the self-help documents, presentations and videos available via the links under the headings throughout this page. If further assistance is needed, please contact the Procurement Department at procurement AT_TOWSON or 410-704-2171.
- All TU employees should complete training for the modules you expect to use, starting with general navigation, employee reimbursements, travel and purchasing.
- Supervisors, financial stewards and cost center managers must complete training for all Stratus modules. Financial stewards and cost center managers should review the quick reference guide (PDF).
- These docs apply to more than one module so it might be helpful to refer to them throughout the process: Stratus glossary terms and definitions (EXCEL), delegate/reassign tasks when out of office (PDF) and manage delegates (PDF).
- Watch the ProCard training video (VIDEO).
- See how to create a ProCard expense report (PDF).
- See how to approve a ProCard expense report (PDF).
- See how to view a rejected expense report (PDF).
If a faculty member is a ProCard holder, are they responsible for approving ProCard transactions?
Yes, all cardholders are responsible for reviewing, reallocating, if necessary, reconciling and submitting their ProCard transactions. By submitting, card holders approve their expense reports. After submission, expense reports will be reviewed and approved by their supervisor, cost center manager and financial steward.
What if the cardholder is the cost center manager?
The cardholder’s transactions would be approved by their supervisor and financial stewards so for auditing purposes, this is sufficient.
Can students (undergraduate and graduate) complete tasks like ProCard reallocations in Stratus?
No. Students will not have a Stratus Financials login.
Can ProCard transactions be reallocated to another cost center?
Yes. A cardholder will be able to reallocate to other cost centers but the financial stewards and cost center managers of those cost centers need to approve them. The current ProCard reallocation and reconciliation system is going away. There should be open communication with any financial stewards and cost center managers about transactions hitting their budgets.
Is there still a bank statement?
Yes. Cardholders will still receive a monthly statement via US Bank. However, cardholders are no longer required to submit their signed monthly statement.
Faculty have no idea of how to fill out an expense report. Shouldn’t this task reside with the admins or chairs to complete?
The preparation piece of the expense report can be delegated to an admin if desired, but as a Procurement Card holder, it is your responsibility to make sure the transactions are reviewed, correct, and expense reports are completed.
Can I look up past expense reports?
All expense reports are located the top of the expense module. You can also run a report for completed and pending expense reports.
Why did the cost center on my expense report change during the approval process?
There is an open Service Request with Oracle regarding this issue. If you notice that an expense report ultimately hit your default cost center when you’ve changed from your default to a different cost center, please email the Stratus Financials team with the details.
Why is the system cumbersome to navigate?
If cardholder’s are having issues navigating the Stratus, one-on-one training is available to cardholders on how to navigate the expense module and create, approve, and reject an expense report with ease.
The default cost center is not unique to the cardholder’s department. Do we have to modify budgets on every single sale?
Stratus utilizes HCM supervisor hierarchy and home cost center in each of the workflows. If cardholders wish to change their default cost center, they must submit a request to stratusfinancialsteam AT_TOWSON. However, if there are any changes to the employees HR profiles (i.e. phone number, address, email), this will trigger the HR integration to run and reset the default. If they notice that their cost center reverts back, another request is needed. Note-changes to the default cost center will only apply to expense items created after the default cost center was updated. This will not retroactively update any existing expense items.
The Stratus landing page for Expense Items gives you a place to modify “Type”, add a “Description”, and even upload an “Attachment” for receipt; however, it leaves no place to adjust the budget number. Why do the Expense Items have a field for Location, which on mine are all blank? It seems like that would have been an ideal spot to put a budget field for Account number.
Stratus was designed for all expenses (Travel, Reimbursement, and ProCard Transactions) to utilize the Expense Module. The location field is used for the Travel and Reimbursement Expense Reports, not ProCard Expense report. Cardholder will need to enter this information on the individual line.
Stratus only has 15 transaction lines for Expense Items on their landing page – why not expand in full, as the old TU site did?
Stratus was designed for the Procard transactions to be uploaded daily. Thus, the total number of transactions displayed in the Expense Module will vary. However, all transactions will be available until they are placed on an expense report.
Stratus doesn’t keep a running tally of how much is spent each month by p-card, and I almost always max out my spending limit due to orders for collections. The old site used to give a grand total of our bank statement as it was happening. Does Stratus have this capability?
Stratus was not designed to provide spending limits (monthly and single) and available balance. Cardholders will need to login into US Bank to obtain this information. If cardholder need their passwords reset or assistance with the page, they should email pcpa AT_TOWSON.
When creating an expense report, if you change the type, the account number will automatically change. But if you change the account number, the number will not change correspondingly resulting in a requirement to submit a journal entry to re-classify the expenses. Why?
This is the system’s configuration. Cardholders are strongly encouraged to review each transaction on their expense report to ensure that the type and account numbers are correct.
Each Visa transaction “Type” seems to default to a vendor’s merchant category code (MCC), rather than to a default set up for the cardholder – in our case, each p-card purchase in the old system used to default to “new books,” so as a result, we only had to reallocate a fraction of transactions that didn’t fit into that category each month. Is this possible in Stratus?
At this time, this is not an option in Stratus. However, we have a project scheduled in 2023 to review all of the MCC codes and descriptions in Stratus.
Purchasing - How to Create a Requisition for FY24
For information on creating a requistion in the next fiscal year, see our how-to document (PDF).
- Watch the purchasing training video (VIDEO).
- See how to create a purchasing requisition (PDF).
- See how to approve a purchase requisition (PDF).
- See how to duplicate a requisition (PDF).
- See how to prepare a requisition for another requestor (PDF).
- See how to manage a requisition (PDF).
- See how to withdraw and edit a requisition (PDF).
- See how to create a receipt (PDF).
- See how to confirm a receipt (PDF).
- See how to update or cancel a receipt (PDF).
Who enters requisitions in Stratus and how do they do it?
TU employees can enter requisitions to purchase goods and services using Stratus. Requisitions can be entered directly into the system or selected through a “Shopping List” when a group of items are frequently purchased together. The Shopping List is helpful for repeat purchases. It allows you to group a list of items that are frequently purchased together and select from the list to create your purchase requisition.
How can I check the status of a requisition in the approval cycle?
Find your latest requisitions and view approval status using the “Recent Requisitions” or the “Manage Requisitions” search feature. You can click the "Pending Approval" link to review your requisition’s progress in the approval process. See the life cycle of purchase orders, receipts and invoices for a specific requisition using the “View Life Cycle” button.
How do I keep informed about general TU purchasing news?
The Procurement Office will post announcements about newly executed contracts, policy updates and other helpful information in Stratus’s “Purchasing News."
Do large purchases still need to be received?
Yes. All purchase orders, goods or services will need to be received in Stratus and anyone within the department can complete the receiving within the system, not just Central Receiving. The receiving action signifies your approval to pay a purchase order invoice and replaces the signed code block from DocuSign.
who to contact
Stratus Financials Team
For questions regarding Stratus Financials general navigation, chart of accounts, journal uploads, reporting, or Stratus Financials access, please see our Training & Resources page. You may also contact the Stratus Financials Team at stratusfinancialsteam AT_TOWSON or 410-704-2188.
For questions regarding travel expenses, please contact the Business Travel Office at travel AT_TOWSONor 410-704-5421.
Stratus training and resources for travel expenses can be found here.