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Reconciliation Best Practices

Reconciliation Best Practices

Preparing monthly budget reconciliations for all chart strings is critical in order to enable PI’s to monitor their expenditures and plan for future spending. Specifically reconciliations:

  • Keep PIs informed on a monthly basis of the financial status of their awards and projects
  • Monitor spending rate (over or under)
  • Review charges to ensure they are allowable, allocable, consistent, and reasonable
  • Track cost share revenue and expense
  • Review status of charges (requisitions are received, encumbrances are resolved, payroll is not in suspense, journals are processed)
  • Plan for future expenditures not encumbered (stipend, post doc salary and fringe benefits, PI summer salary, PI academic year salary)


  • Review GM045 and GL008 statements at month close to verify all expenses and encumbrances are accurate
  • Ensure the expenses are allocable, allowable, reasonable, and consistent
  • Confirm payroll expenses and encumbrances are accurate based on funding entered by reviewing Cognos PED reports and/or GL008 drill down
  • Enter revenue, expense, encumbrance, payroll, and tuition data from financial statements into each PI’s reconciliation spreadsheet by project
  • Add additional encumbrances and expenses by project as necessary, such as:
    • Funding changes to graduate student stipends, post doc salary, and fringe that affect the current month total expenditures and encumbrances (i.e. suspense)
    • Finalize spreadsheet by confirming adjusted balance, direct cost balance, and spending rate
      • NEW: You can also do pro-forma projections right in the Researcher Portal and export those to excel as well


  • PI should receive a copy of a monthly reconciliation spreadsheet with a copy of the monthly GM045 and GL008.  The monthly reconciliation spreadsheet should include:
    • Summary of Accounts:  A summary of the PI’s grant and discretionary chart string account balances by project
    • Current Personnel and Salary:  A summary of salary expenses, encumbrances, and tuition charges for all student employees and research staff
    • Notes or areas of concern related to reconciliation to the PI’s

Sample Reconciliation Spreadsheets