NUPlans Contributor Basics Manual

This article serves as a general manual on the uses of the various capabilities available within NUPlans Contributor.

Security Access Roles in Contributor


This role

Gives access to these views and related functionality…


Access to fund and carry forward views for budget input, plus the ability to add chart strings and change chart string status


Access to fund and carry forward views for budget input


Access to compensation views for salary budgeting, plus the ability to add salary placeholders

Salary – Confidential

Access to compensation views for salary budgeting, plus the ability to add salary

placeholders. Access to view confidential employees (those with an HR home department ID ending in 90 or 96).


Access to the grants view and access to NUPlans Web for adding grant proposals and for the Indirects Report


Prep File

Includes all other roles except Salary – Confidential. Intended for users who have responsibility for submitting the budget for their entire prep file area.

Navigate to NUPlans Contributor



Then click NUPlans Contributor Login.


1.    The Contributor applications page appears with a choice of budget preparation files by year.

2.    Click NUPlans_FYxx_Budget for the desired year. The Contributor Dashboard opens.


Contributor Dashboard



Navigational Icons

Located in the upper right corner of the Dashboard








It is recommended to log off after each session. Then click the browser’s close icon to exit the application.

Logging off ends the SSO session, which will also log you out of other systems, such as NUFinancials.

If you are logged out due to inactivity, you may need to login again. Click Logoff to see the NU Online Passport page and log in again.




Refresh is unnecessary for data entry, but it may be helpful to see state changes as a result of budgeting activity (yours or your colleagues). You may also use Refresh to reset the logoff timer.




The Return icon takes you to a list of budgeting applications. Click NUPlans_FYxx Budget to find your way back.



Opens the TM1 Applications Guide in a new tab.


State Icons

The dashboard tells you the status of the budget group in the State column.








No one has yet taken ownership of the budget grouping in order to edit the budget. Budget groups return to this state when ownership is released.




A user has taken ownership of the budget grouping. This budget group has not been submitted.



Work in Progress

No items belonging to this item are Available but not all are Locked. This state applies only to parents.




At least one child budget grouping belonging to this parent is Available, and at least one other child is in a state of Reserved, Locked, or Ready. This state applies only to parents.




The budget grouping was submitted and locked. Data in this state is read-only. If the budget grouping is rejected, its state returns to Reserved.




All children belonging to the parent budget grouping are locked. The data is ready to be submitted to the next level in the budgeting hierarchy. This state applies only to parents.


Permissions Icons

Depending on the budget grouping you are working with and the permissions you have for it, you can submit a single child budget grouping, multiple children, or a parent budget grouping.







You have read access to the budget preparation file.




You have write access and may enter data.




You have submit access and may initiate the review process.




You have access to approve and reject budgets.


How to Open the Budget Preparation File




1.    If you have access to both child and parent (rollup) levels, expand the tree to see all budget groupings to which you have access.

2.    To enter budget data, click the name of the child budget grouping to open the budget preparation file in a new window.

§  Alternatively, you may right-click the child in the expandable tree at left and click Open NUPlans Contributor.

Contributor Budget Preparation File





A. Toolbar

The most important icons on the toolbar (in order of use) are: Take Ownership, Recalculate, and Commit.

A complete list of icons and their definitions follows on a subsequent page.

B. Tabs

Tabs represent a view within the budget. Use the tabs to navigate between views. The order of tabs imitates the budgeting process, starting with compensation, including grant expenses, progressing through funds, and finishing with summary views called Allocations and Carry Forward. Wait for a view to load before clicking another tab.

C. Current View

The illuminated tab whose name is bold indicates the current view on display.

D. Dimensions

The area of the view below the tabs in three sections: Rows, Columns, and Context. Dimensions enable you to manipulate the view. For example, you may want to filter rows, show/hide columns, or toggle between budget groupings. Basic procedures for using the dimensions are on subsequent pages.

E. Grid (of Cells)

The area of the view occupied by cells where you may add or edit data at the intersection of a column and row.

All cells are gray and un-enterable if you have read only access or if you have not taken ownership.

F. Page Navigation

Views may have multiple pages of data. On each page, you must normally scroll horizontally to see all columns and you must normally scroll vertically to see all rows. To navigate between pages, you may use the Previous Page and Next Page arrows. Navigation is also available at the bottom of the view: Top, Page up, Page down, Bottom, and Page X of X.



Contributor Toolbar Icons

Icons used by NU are described below in order of appearance. Active icons are in color. Inactive icons are grayed out.






Actions Menu

The Actions Menu groups some icons and functions:

image.png      Export data in the following formats:

Slice to Excel – not recommended

Snapshot to Excel - Exports data to a new Excel spreadsheet, excluding the formulas. The spreadsheet does not maintain a connection with the server.

Export to PDF - not recommended. Export to Excel, then convert to PDF.

image.png      Reset Data enables you to erase all changes you made since you last took ownership and committed data. Use this feature carefully, because all changes saved to your personal folder are lost. It erases data in green or blue.

image.png     Reset View reestablishes the default layout of the view(s) and restores all default behavior, including auto- recalculation and zero suppression.

·         Reset Current View – affects only the view you are currently working in

·         Reset All Views – affects all views

·         Reset Tabs– restores all tabs to their original default order

·         Reset Both Views and Tabs - restores all views/tabs to their default behavior

image.png– Closes the grid. The dashboard remains open.





Commit also saves and recalculates. Additionally, it makes your changes public. Commit does not lock the budget from additional changes. You should commit data early and often to ensure your colleagues see the most up-to-date budget preparation file.



Take Ownership

To add or edit data, you must first take ownership of the budget preparation file. There may be one owner at a time.





Submitting data saves the budget preparation file and locks it from further changes. It signals to the next reviewer to begin the review.




Copy data to paste it to other cells. You may also right-click in a cell to find it.






Paste copied data into cells. Use the toolbar, or right-click in a cell to find it.








Undo the last recalculated data change. If you recalculated multiple times, you can undo/redo multiple times. When you undo, all affected values are also undone, even in cells not visible on the active view. Undo/redo applies only to the current logged in session. After you commit data, you cannot undo.





After you undo a data change, you can restore the change.




Recalculate saves the data you entered, runs all related calculations, updates and saves all affected cells in the budget preparation file.

A keyboard shortcut is the <Enter> or <Return> key.

Recalculate allows you to see the effect of your data entry before making it public. Recalculated data is saved in a secure but personal folder on the NUPlans network server. You may close the budget preparation file knowing your data is saved for personal use and resume work on the budget at a later time. However, your data entry is not public. Colleagues cannot see it.



TM1 Application Web Help - opens the TM1 Applications Guide in a new tab

View Help – Specifically written for Northwestern budgeters

Budget Data Entry Workflow

1.  Take Ownership

If you are not the current owner, the budget preparation file opens in view-only mode. Before you can edit data, you must take ownership.

·         Click the Take Ownership image.png icon if the dashboard indicates the state is available.

§  If someone else has ownership, you will receive an error if you try to take ownership.

§  The current owner must release their ownership to you using this icon image.png on the Contributor Dashboard.

§  Once you have taken ownership, the budget grid changes from view-only to edit mode.

o   Cells that you can edit now have a white background.

o   Cells that are read-only have a gray background.


2.  Edit Data

Edit a value in a white cell in one of the following two ways.

·         Replace a value Single-click a white cell and type any value to replace the existing value. The data you entered is green to indicate it is new but not saved. Exit the cell with the arrow keys on your keyboard to move left, right, up, or down; or use your mouse to move through the grid.

·         Selectively edit a value Double-click a white cell to insert the cursor so that you can selectively edit. Position the cursor with the left and right arrow keys, then add, change, or delete. Use the

<Backspace> and <Delete> keys to remove one digit at a time. Exit the cell using <Tab> or



3.  Recalculate Data

·         When you are ready to save, click recalculate image.jpg  or press the Enter key on your keyboard. Result: The view refreshes and calculations occur. Your data entries and all data affected by the calculation are blue to indicate the edits are stored securely on the NUPlans application server in your private folder. No one else can see your edits.


4.  Commit data

·         When you click the Commit icon image.png all edits are written to the public folder for the budget group. All users with access to your budget group can see the changes and continue editing.

·         After you commit, values are black to indicate they are public again. Anyone may continue to edit the values (including yourself).


5.  Submit a Child Budget Grouping to Reviewers

1.    Click the Submit icon image.png to initiate a review of the budget grouping.

2.    Click Yes to confirm. The result as it appears to reviewers is shown below.

·  When you click Submit, the node is locked from all further edits.

o   For that reason, do not click Submit until you are ready for the budget review.

o   If you mistakenly click Submit, you may ask your Reviewer to reject the budget grouping, which will unlock the budget for further edits.


Budget Review Workflow

Reject a Budget Grouping


Reject is a solution if a budgeter clicked Submit by mistake. Budget groupings must be rejected at the child level.

1.    On the Dashboard, locate the Name of the child budget grouping.

2.    Click the Reject icon image.png next to the name to request further edits to budget grouping.

3.    Click Yes to confirm. When you click Reject, the node is unlocked to allow further edits.



Submit a Parent Budget Grouping to Reviewers (Approve)

Budget groupings may be organized into parent levels that represent interim departmental or operational reviews. After the operational review, it is necessary to submit the parent budget grouping to a review by area finance. This is how you indicate approval.

1.    On the Dashboard, locate the Name of the parent budget grouping and confirm the state is Ready.

2.    Click the Submit icon image.png.

3.    Click Yes to confirm. Result: the next level of reviewers (area finance or the budget office) sees the state of the next parent level change to Ready.


Drill to Details



From most fund and compensation summary views of NUPlans, drills are available in many cells that lead to supporting detail.

1.    Right-click in the cell you wish to drill on.

2.    Mouse over the drill icon or the word Drill.

3.    Click the drill name.

4.    Result: the details appear in a new contributor tab to the far right.

5.    Be sure to close each new tab when you finish.


Drills in NUPlans Contributor


In this view

Right-click in these cells

And drill to

Comp Summary

Any cell in the view

Comp Pos Input Summary Map – Employee-level data


Comp Fund Overview


Any cell in the view


Compensation Position Input –

Funding source details per employee

Comp Budget by Chart String

Budgeted Salary from Comp Input

Compensation Pos Input Map

– Employee-level data


All Fund views


myHR Enc and myHR Act

(expand current FY YTD Obligations,

drill on salary accounts)


Compensation Pos Input Map -

– Employee-level data

All Fund views

Linked from Compensation (expand Total Linked In)

Compensation Chart String Input


All Fund views

Linked from Grants (expand Total Linked In)


Grant Drill Map – Grant details

All Fund views

Linked from Commitments (expand Total Linked In)

Commitment Transaction Map

– Commitment transactions details


Export Data to Excel

You can export data from Contributor views to Excel spreadsheets.



1.    On the toolbar, click the Actions Menu icon image.jpg.

2.    Select/hover over Export.

3.    Select Snapshot to Excel.




4.    Below the heading “Number of rows to export,” select the option that best encompasses the data you want to see:

§  Export rows in the current page.

§  Export rows from beginning to current page.

§  Export all rows in the view.

Ignore the heading “Title dimension to export.”

5.    Click OK. Depending on which browser you are using:

§  The file will open (Chrome, Firefox)

§  The browser’s file download dialog appears (Edge).

o    Open with Microsoft Excel (default) or

o    Save File to save the file in a directory on your computer or network.

For additional assistance please contact the IT Support Center at 847-491-4357 (1-HELP) option 7, or

Keywords:NUPlans, Contributor, "NUPlans security"   Doc ID:118217
Owner:ESAF GL Team .Group:Northwestern
Created:2022-04-27 11:16 CDTUpdated:2022-04-27 17:40 CDT
Feedback:  0   0