Descriptions and journal fields

Care should be exercised by staff to ensure that the journal line descriptions (or 'narrations') are relevant and concise. Staff should be clear as to the reason for and effect of the journal entry and the description should reflect this understanding.  In particular:

  • enter the most relevant information first and do not include redundant information, which is otherwise provided by the ledger record. For example, do not enter the account code name into the journal entry description, such as #5404 Conferences and Seminars, instead enter details such as names and dates (for example, Smith 02/2007 Optics);
  • cross reference the other Chartfield combination if transferring between accounts;
  • when correcting a previous erroneous entry, reverse the prior entry in full and re-enter the correct entry in full. Never attempt to correct by entering the difference between the correct and incorrect entry. This will only lead to subsequent confusion for any officer trying, at a later date, to work out what took place; and
  • the reference field on the journal entry request is designed to be a cross reference to other data in the general ledger or supporting transaction documentation such as the Accounts Payable Voucher number, the invoice and another related journal entry number. The reference field should normally be completed in almost 100% of journals, so it is important to consider this field in journal construction.