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Travel Services

ASTRA (System Roles/Approvals)

How are approvers assigned in eTravel (Expense Report)? 

The approval flow is managed by a UW IT system called ASTRA, which is a 3rd party system that communicates with Ariba to automatically assign approvers. Assigning these roles is mandatory and is managed at the department level by an administrator with the proper system access. Errors in the approval flow (a role not being properly assigned) is routed automatically to Travel Services to communicate required resolution to the report preparer. 

eTravel Roles

Authorizer

Responsibilities: 

  • Assigns all eTravel roles to department users besides preparer (compliance, funding, watcher). See below for more information regarding those roles. This is typically a department finance administrator. 

Who is my authorizer? 

Step 1: ASTRA login 

Step 2: Use the 'who can authorize me' search function: 

The search allows you to search by budget # and organization code. Make sure to set the application to eTravel to determine travel role authorizer: 

Preparer

How to assign role:

  • Staff, Faculty and Student Employees automatically have this role when active in UW payroll (Workday)

Responsibilities: 

  • Initiate and complete expense report for themselves or on behalf of another traveler
  • Completes report in accordance with UW and department policy
  • Attaches all required documentation (receipts, approvals, etc.)
  • Ensures documentation is in accordance with retention & scanning policy set forth by UW Records Management
  • For non-UW & UW students (non-employees): added to the end of the approval flow to approve that the required signed copy of expense report has been attached

Compliance

How to assign role:

  • Compliance role is assigned using ASTRA and must be set by the department 'Authorizer' with the proper system access level. This role can NOT be set by Travel Services.
  • Compliance approver can be assigned at both the budget and organizational level. If they will be fulfilling more than one role, be sure to set accordingly in ASTRA.
  • **It is highly recommended having at least 2 persons assigned to each role

Responsibilities:

  • Reviews report in entirety to confirm adherence to UW and department policy
  • Ensures documentation is in accordance with retention & scanning policy set forth by UW Records Management
  • Ensures all expenses are necessary and critical to UW business, obtained at the most economical logical cost
  • Ensures same expenses have not been previously reimbursed on an expense report or other payment module
  • Edit expense line items if necessary and add documentation if missing. The report can be denied back to the preparer to make changes when needed.

Funding

How to assign role:

  • Funding role is assigned using ASTRA and must be set by the department 'Authorizer' with the proper system access level. This role can NOT be set by Travel Services. 
  • Funding approver can be assigned at both the budget and organizational level. If they will be fulfilling more than one role, be sure to set accordingly in ASTRA.
  • **It is highly recommended having at least 2 persons assigned to each role

Responsibilities:

  • Reviews report in entirety to confirm adherence to budget/funding policy
  • Encouraged to review report in entirety to confirm adherence to UW and department policy as a back up to compliance role

Traveler/Claimant

  • Active UW employees receive an automatic email with 'action required' in the subject line and approve the report electronically. For all other traveler types (non-UW, student, etc.) a signature box populates on the print version of the report and this must be signed and attached to the expense report. Handwritten and eSignatures are both accepted: 

  • Submits documentation in accordance with retention & scanning policy set forth by UW Records Management
  • Attests by reviewing expense report in entirety that 'by signing this document, I certify, under penalty of perjury, that the claimed travel expenses were incurred for official university business and were appropriate in the conduct of this business. The most economical means available were used to accomplish this business unless personal safety would have been compromised. I have not received nor will receive other reimbursement for these expenses.'
  • Travel is responsible for being familiar with UW and department policy. Expenses as a result of negligence are not reimbursable.

Watcher

How to assign role: 

  • Watcher role is assigned using ASTRA and must be set by the department 'Authorizer' with the proper system access level. This role can NOT be set by Travel Services. 
  • Watcher role can be assigned at both the budget and organizational level. If they will be fulfilling more than one role, be sure to set accordingly in ASTRA.
  • Can be added to expense report as a one-time watcher using the expense report module

Responsibilities:

  • Has viewing only capability (comments, attachments, summary, line items, etc.)

Ad-hoc Approver

eTravel (Expense Report) module allows for approvers to be added ad-hoc. This can be done by clicking the 'approval flow' tab at the top of the report: 

When adding the approver as the preparer in 'composing' status, the choices are limited to adding them in parallel or the beginning. 

When adding as the preparer in 'submitted' status, the choices are to add them in parallel, before, or after the selected node in the approvals. 

Travel Services Review

  • Travel will focus the approval review to the high risk flag(s) that prompted our approval 
  • Approval does not constitute a complete review of the expense report

2020 Review Flags: 

Personal Time + Airfare
Personal Time + Car Rental

Meal Paid for Other > $75.00

Non Incidental Supply

Not Sole Driver (rental car)

Non-US + B2/WT Visa Types

Airfare Change Fee, UW Business

Living Allowance

1st Class Airfare

Per Diem Advance

Business Class Airfare – not 14hr rule

**Travel may perform random reviews to conduct a risk analysis

Expense Report Reconciliation

  • For security purposes, only those on the approval flow (preparer, compliance approver, funding approver, traveler, watchers) that have been added can view the comments or attachments in an expense report. To view past reports, they must be added to a role that already exists in that report.
  • For example, if you add a user as a watcher, but that role had not been assigned for previous reports, they will not be able to view comments or attachments. If they are added as a compliance approver, they would have viewing capability as that is a required role for all reports.