Top Navigation

Side Navigation

Internal Control Tips

Management and staff should be familiar with all University policies, procedures, laws and regulations. These include, but are not limited to the following:

Management should keep written procedures for cash handling and accounting functions in each department. These procedures should specify who does what and should be updated as needed.

Key management duties should not be delegated. This includes the review and approval functions.

Financial Reports

  • Monthly budget financial reports should be reconciled to the transaction documents and internal records by an employee not recording or approving transactions.
  • An independent employee should review the monthly budget financial report and reconciliation.
  • Budget variances should be reviewed and investigated.
  • The person performing reviews should sign or initial and date the item or reports reviewed as evidence the review occurred.

Cash Receipts

  • Review the "Internal Control in Cash Handling Operations" brochure
  • Checks should be immediately endorsed when received.
  • Cash and checks should be properly safeguarded at all times against loss. Cash should always be kept locked up with only designated employees having access to cash.
  • If possible, deposit cash and checks at the Union Service Center or Billing and Receivables office before the end of the day. Unless necessary, never leave cash stored in offices over weekends or breaks.
  • If a department must hold cash overnight, make sure there is a secured place to store it at all times. A safe may be necessary if larger amounts of cash are held in your office or within a department.
  • Deposit cash and checks as required by the State of Illinois State Officers and Employees Money Disposition Act (30 ILCS 230/2)and University policy:
    • Accumulation of funds $10,000 or more, within 24 hours
    • Accumulation of funds $500 to $10,000, within 48 hours
    • Less than $500, weekly
  • Cash should never be sent to the Union Service Center or Billing and Receivables Office via University mail. If possible, two employees should take the cash to these locations for deposit.
  • Keep a cash receipts journal, or a duplicate receipt copy, or another suitable record when accepting payments.

Procurement

Expenses

Travel

  • Refer to the University's travel procedures or the Illinois Higher Education Travel Control Board.
  • Ensure that all travel is conducted in the most cost efficient and effective manner.
  • Properly document or explain any unusual circumstances affecting the length of trip, mode of travel, lodging, etc.
  • Effective July 7, 2010, employees must submit a "Request for Travel" with Vice President or Presidential approval prior to travel. See the WIU Expense Prioritization Letter note the use of the "Request for Travel" was discontinued starting July 1, 2011 (see Request for Travel & Supervisor Approval link above.)

Property Accounting

  • Review University's policies and procedures pertaining to Property Accounting.
  • Maintain an inventory listing of all property and equipment owned by the department, including items under $500.
  • For any items under $500, yellow property tag should be affixed indicating that it is property of Western Illinois University.
  • Employees should mark any personal property, including fans, radios, laptops, etc. with their name and a notation that it is personal property.
  • An equipment loan form should be completed for both short-term and long-term equipment loans.
  • When equipment is transferred from one department to another, an equipment transfer form should be completed and filed with Property Accounting.
  • Equipment should not be moved, loaned, or discarded without informing the designated equipment loan custodian and Property Accounting. Approval is required before equipment can be discarded.
  • For terminating or retiring employees, the inventory custodian should verify that all equipment has been returned prior to the last day of work.

Staffing & Personnel

  • The department should have a well-written departmental policies and procedures manual which addresses significant activities and unique issues. Employee responsibilities, limits to authority, performance standards, control procedures, and reporting relationships should be clearly established. The department should have an adequate training program for employees.
  • Employees should be well acquainted with the University’s policies and procedures that pertain to their job responsibilities.
  • Job descriptions should exist, clearly state responsibilities for internal control, and correctly translate desired competence levels into requisite knowledge, skills, and experience.
  • Employee performance evaluations should be conducted at least annually.
  • Ensure that any supplemental pay is approved and processed according to University procedures.
  • When necessary, management should ensure that appropriate disciplinary action is taken when an employee does not comply with policies and procedures or behavioral standards. To obtain disciplinary guidance for full-time employees, contact either the Human Resources Office for civil service employees or the Provost Office for academic and administrative personnel.