Systems Access Application Process

Financial Systems Security Application (FSSA)

The FSSA is a combined application for a user to gain access to any of Columbia University’s financial systems. Please complete the steps below to submit a request for system access. All security role requests must be approved by both the requestor’s manager and the DAF Administrator for departments for which access is requested.  The application allows a user to apply for their own access or to apply for access on someone else's behalf.

A handbook is available which is designed to assist faculty and staff who need to request and/or approve system access to any of the Columbia University financial systems. Click here to view the Finance Security Handbook.

Note: Administrators wanting to delete a user's access should submit an incident to the Finance Service Center.  Employees transferring from one CU department to another should wait until UNI shows up in new department (about 2 weeks) before submitting a new FSSA.  In certain cases, administrative changes within a department can affect a user's access. 


Just Applying for Reporting Access?

The Financial Inquiry Application (FIA) is a shorter alternative to the Financial Systems Security Application (FSSA) and offers users a faster and easier way to apply for inquiry only access. With inquiry only access, a user may view data in ARC and may also view financial reports through the Financial Data Store (FDS). There are two types of inquiry access:

Inquiry Access by Department: Inquiry access by department allows a user to view all financial activity recorded on a specific department. It also allows a user to view all financial activity recorded on ChartFields owned by that specific department.

Inquiry Access by ChartField: Inquiry access by ChartField allows users to view all financial activity recorded on a specific Project, Activity, Initiative and/or Segment.

Access to Payroll Accounting Distribution (PAD) info by Department and/or ChartField may also be requested via the Financial Inquiry Application. In addition, this new security application allows an administrator to request reporting access on behalf of faculty, principal investigators and/or scope investigators.  

The Financial Inquiry Application is available in ServiceNow via the Finance Service Center website. Please refer to the Financial Inquiry Application Handbook for detailed instructions on how to complete the form.

Steps to Request Financial System Access

  1. Review the Finance Security Handbook (see Section 4).  If completing an application for yourself, consult with your manager to ensure that you apply for the correct system access.
  2. Complete all relevant sections of the Financial Systems Security Application.  (Users applying for inquiry access only (either to Departments or ChartFields) have the option of filling out the shorter Financial Inquiry Application (FIA) - Click here for the FIA Handbook)
  3. Once you have completed the application, review the terms and conditions statement at the bottom and click the box that states “User Acceptance”.
  4. Click "Order Now" (either at the bottom or the upper right corner of the application) to save the application. Click “Checkout” once you are ready to submit the application for approval.  Please note, the Checkout page references a delivery time based on an average of 3-5 business days for processing, once all of the training (if required) has been completed.  However, as the timing for manager and DAF approval and completion of training may vary, time to completion of your application may vary.
  5. The application will then be routed to the manager you entered in section 1.1 for review and approval. If the application was completed by the manager, it will skip this step and route directly to the DAF Administrator.  The manager may approve, reject or return the application for edit. You will receive an email notification if your application is rejected or returned for edit.  If the application is returned for edit, locate your application in the “My Service Requests” tab on the left navigation bar of Service Now.  Once you have made the requested edits, click “Resubmit to Manager for Approval”.

  6. After the manager approves the request, the application will be routed to the DAF Administrator for their review and approval. Each School/Unit has designated DAF Administrators who oversee access and authority – click here for a complete list of departments and the associated DAF Administrator group.  If special requests are selected (roles in Section 3), the application will be routed to the Controller's Office for review and approval after DAF approval.  You will receive an email confirmation when the DAF Administrator (or if applicable, the Controller’s Office) approves your request.
  7. Get trained! View Required Trainings by Role chart to learn what online classes are required for your particular ARC role.  Requested access will not be granted until all training is completed.  
  8. If no special requests are selected (section 3 roles) the application will be routed to the Training Administrator who will confirm that all required training for the roles requested has been completed.
  9. Users have two weeks to complete all training.  Once all training is complete, the Training Administrator will forward the request to the CUIT Security Administrator to set up the roles.  Please allow 3-5 days after training is complete.
  10. If the application includes special requests (section 3), the application will be routed to the Controller’s Office for review and approval. Once the Controller’s Office has approved the application, they will forward the request to the Training Administrator, and then to CUIT Security Administrator to set up the roles (as outlined above). 
  11. You will receive an email confirmation once your access has been established. If you are a new user, or requested to add/update any reporting or inquiry roles, please note that your access will not be active until the morning following the date of the email.  Otherwise, the access requested will be available.