Create a Transactional Contract in NUFinancials

This guide walks a Contract Administrator through the process of creating a Transactional Purchasing Contract.

Contract Administrators can create transactional contracts for the purchase of goods and services. Transactional Contracts include the supplier ID, expiration/renewal dates, and maximum dollar amounts (to prevent overspending). The contract is built by answering questions in a document wizard. Contracts are routed for collaboration with colleagues to get their feedback. If edits are made (to clauses), they will be reviewed by central offices. Alternatively, a supplier-supplied contract may be used (when needed).

New contracts should be created in NUFinancials when contract terms/terms & conditions need to be reviewed and no Preferred Vendor contract exists. If a Preferred Vendor contract exists, a requisition should be created with the agreed upon statement of work/event description attached. The requisition should then be associated to the Preferred Vendor contract in NUFinancials.

If you are unsure whether or not to enter a new contract in the Supplier Contracts module, please contact PPS.

  • Requesters create contract requisitions based on the contract's ID number, supplier and category.
  • For non-monetary contracts (statement of work, non-disclosure, media release, ), use an Ad Hoc contract.
  • Ad Hoc contracts may be attached to the transactional contract for collaboration and signatures.

Step 1: Contract Entry

Log in to NUFinancials.

Navigation: NUFinancials > Navigator > Supplier Contracts > Create Contracts and Documents > Contract Entry > Add a New Value tab

Tip: Click 3 Bar Action List icon > Add to Favorites > OK

  1. Click Add. Do not change SetID, Contract ID, or Contract Process Option fields.

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  1. Enter the NetID of the Contract Administrator/Buyer (yourself or another user).

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  1. Select the supplier by clicking the Supplier Search A supplier must have an active profile in NUFinancials before a contract can be created. See Add a Supplier, as needed.

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a. Type search criteria (do not press enter).
b. Click Search, and review Search Results.
Option: Increase the number of Max Rows and search again (as needed).
Option: Click the View All link (as needed).
Option: To view an address, click the Set checkbox on a line. Click the Address link.
c. Select the supplier for this contract by clicking the Select checkbox and then click OK.

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  1. Enter the contract’s Begin Date. This defaults to today and may be changed to a future date or a date within the past 2 This does not have to be an event’s starting date.
  2. Enter the contract’s Expire Date (as needed). This should be the event’s date or later. Requisitions cannot be created/PO changed after this Payments are not affected by a contract’s expiration date.
  3. Enter the Renewal Date of the contract (as needed). This must be 30-90 days before the Expire Date (or longer, as needed).
  4. Enter the Supplier Contract Reference number (when a contract is provided by the supplier or a master agreement exists between the university and the supplier, see Preferred suppliers .
  5. Enter a meaningful Description (30 characters , required). Consult with your department for any naming conventions to use.
  6. Enter a Maximum Amount to set a budget cap and prevent exceeding that amount (required). All contracts $25,000 and higher will need to be reviewed and approved by Procurement and Payment Services before being signed. A Purchasing Decision Documentation form must be attached. 

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  1. Under Contract Items – Lines – Details section, click the magnifying glass and select a purchasing Category (required). These are the same categories used in requisitions and can later be used to search for contracts in the Supplier Contract Workbench.
  • If you receive the following error, “Another contract with this supplier, for the category on line 1, begins on the same date. This category has been put on a different contract with the same beginning date for the same The system maintains only one contract for a given beginning date for the same category/supplier combination.” select a different Begin Date.
  • Optional, click + (plus sign) to add additional lines for more categories (as needed). Enter number of rows to Click OK
  1. Under Contract Categories – Lines – Details section, click the magnifying glass and select a purchasing Category (required). These are the same categories used in requisitions and can later be used to associate contracts with requisitions. 
  • If you receive the following error, “Another contract with this supplier, for the category on line 1, begins on the same date. This category has been put on a different contract with the same beginning date for the same supplier. The system maintains only one contract for a given beginning date for the same category/supplier ” select a different Begin Date.
  • Optional, click + (plus sign) to add additional lines for more categories (as needed). Enter number of rows to Click OK.

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  1. Click Save. Your Contract ID number is assigned at the top of the page.  

Important Note! 

  • Notify your department's requester(s) when you have created transactional contracts.
  • They will need to select the contract as part of the requisition.
  • Provide the requester with Contract ID number, Description, and Category(ies).
  • The contract needs to be in an approved status before the requester can requisition against it. 
  1. To set up email notifications (recommended), click Thresholds & Notifications.
  2. Click Add a Document. This takes you to the Create Document page. 

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Step 2: Create Document

This step continues from the Contract set-up page. 

  1. Select a Document Type. For a description of Document Types, see Supplier Contract Management If you are using a supplier supplied contract, skip to Alternative: Create a Transactional Contract Using supplier-Supplied Documentation.
  2. Enter the NetID of the contract’s Sponsor (proponent/negotiator, yourself or another user). They will be assigned as a collaborator on this contract.
  3. Enter the Department ID (from chart string) to be associated with this It does not have to match the chart string that will be used in the requisition/purchase order.
  4. Click Create Document. This opens the document wizard DO NOT use Import Document.

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Wizard Execute – Document Creator 

  1. Answer all Questions in the Question Your answers will be used to populate the contract with pre-approved clauses.
  2. Click Next after completing a Question Group. 
  3. When all questions have been answered, click Finish. This takes you to the Document Management page. If you receive a “Generation Error Log” message, contact PPS for assistance.   

Alternative: Create a Transactional Contract Using Supplier- Supplied Documentation

Step 1: Add a Document 

Alternatively, use this process to create a Transactional Contract using supplier-supplied documentation (supplier paper). 

First, complete Step 1: Contract Entry. 

  1. Select a Document Type. For a description of Document Types, see Supplier Contract Management. If you are using a supplier supplied contract, select the Document Type “UNIV Supplier Contract Upload”.
  2. Enter the NetID of the contract’s Sponsor (proponent/negotiator, yourself or another user). They will be assigned as a collaborator on this contract.
  3. Enter the Department ID (from chart string) to be associated with this It does not have to match the chart string that will be used in the requisition/purchase order.
  4. Click Import Document.

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Step 2: Import Document

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  1. Enter the NetID of the contract’s Sponsor (proponent/negotiator, yourself or another user), if They will be assigned as a collaborator on this contract.
  2. Enter the Department ID (from chart string) to be associated with this contract. 
  3. Leave selection on default Current Contract/Document for Import Option. 
  4. Enter Version as 1, Enter Status as Draft, Enter Status Date same as Begin Date, and Upload and Browse for your saved file.
  5. Click Done with Import.  

Step 3: Document Management

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  1. Click View Document (read only) or Edit Document (make changes). 
  1. Open the XML document in Word (2007 or later, not IE plugin).
  2. To edit the document, create a Contract folder on your desktop and save the file Do not change the file name!
  3. After editing, click Check In (or Cancel Check Out if you have not made edits).
  4. Select Version changes; Minor Version (0.01) (small re-writes, cosmetic) or Major Version (1.00) (recreated, new attachment).
  5. Enter Check In Comments.
  6. Click OK.
  7. Browse and Upload your saved
    • The file name must exactly match the document you downloaded for editing. 
    • Changing any clauses will send the contract to Office of General Counsel for approval. 
    • “Checking In” a document does not automatically delete the file you saved to your computer. 
    • Manually delete an old file before saving a new version.  
  1. Click Route Internally. This takes you to the Internal Contacts / Collaborators page.  

  • If there is a related Ad Hoc document, attach it using Attachments/Related Documents before routing internally. 
  • All transactional contracts must go through collaboration before being submitted for approval. 

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  1. Enter User NetID of the NUFinancials user you want to collaborate on this contract. The Sponsor will automatically be included as a You may wish to Set Up Default Collaborators in advance.
  2. Select which users can be a Collaborator (view only) and Can Edit During Collaboration (as needed).
  3. Click + plus to add additional users (as needed).
  4. Enter Collaboration Instructions.
  5. Click Route Internally. Collaborators are notified via system email and their NUFinancials Worklist.  

Appendix A: Set Up Thresholds & Notifications

You can elect to receive an email notification when you are nearing an expiration/renewal date or amount spent by setting up Thresholds & Notifications. 

  1. On the Contract Entry page, click the Thresholds & Notifications link. 

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  1. Click Send Date/Amount Notifications.
  2. Click Expand All.
  3. Enter number of days to be notified before the Expire Date (as needed).
  4. Enter number of days to be notified before the Renewal Date (as needed). Approval date is not being used. 
  5. Enter Amount or Percent of maximum spent to trigger notification (as needed). Threshold notification amount is not being used. 
  6. Select Notification Type: Expiration, Renewal, or Maximum Amount. 
  7. Enter the NUFinancials User ID (NetID) of the person to be notified. 
  8. Click + (plus sign) to add a row (as needed).
  9. Click OK

Appendix B: Set Up Default Collaborators

Set up a default list of colleagues you want to collaborate on your contracts.

Navigation: NUFinancials > Navigator > Supplier Contracts > Create Contracts and Documents > My Document Preferences

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  1. Enter the User NetID of a Collaborator. 
  2. Select which users can be a Collaborator (view only) and Can Edit During Collaboration (as needed).
  3. Click + (plus sign) to add additional users (as needed).
  4. Click Save. Role Level View Access is not being used

Appendix C: Attach Related Documents

You may wish to attach related documents related to the contract. This could include agreements, forms, or other Ad Hoc documents. 

Navigation: NUFinancials > Navigator > Supplier Contracts > Create Contracts and Documents > Document Management > Find an Existing Value > Select Document Keys/Contract ID

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  1. Click Attachments/Related Documents.

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  1. Upload a Document Attachment File - attach a document 

  • Click Upload another Document Attachment File.
  • Browse and Upload your saved file. 
  • Click the Allow Email/Dispatch checkbox (as needed, to send this document to the supplier).
  • Enter a descriptive Title for the attachment. 
  • To add more details, click the Description tab and enter a Document Description (optional).
  • Please note that only “Attachments” can be sent electronically for signature from If an additional document will need to be sent for electronic signature from NUFinancials, please upload it to the attachment section. 
  1. Related Documents - attach an existing Ad Hoc document 
  • Click the Allow Email/Dispatch checkbox (as needed, to send this document to the supplier).
  • Select Source Transaction: Ad Hoc
  • Select the Ad Hoc ID using the magnifying glass. 
  • Please note that “Related Documents” cannot be sent for signature via NUFinancials. Add any documents that should be sent for signature to the “Attachments” section as shown in the previous step. 
  1. Click OK.

For additional assistance please contact the IT Support Center at 847-491-4357 (1-HELP) option 2, or consultant@northwestern.edu.




Keywords:NUFinancials, "Transactional Contract", "Purchasing Contract", "Purchase Order", "Contract Administrator", "Supplier Contracts"   Doc ID:111029
Owner:ESAF PTP Team .Group:Northwestern
Created:2021-05-25 10:23 CDTUpdated:2021-08-05 14:24 CDT
Sites:Northwestern
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