Learn about P-Card Hard Close Dates and Monthly Audit Process

Learn about the Purchasing Card (P-Card) hard close and monthly auditing process at Columbia University. 


The P-Card Team conducts a “hard close” of all P-Card transactions once per month, generally one day before the last business day of the month. We are required to conduct the Hard close to:

  • Account for all transactions within the fiscal period in which the transaction occurred.
  • Provide supporting documentation of payment to the P-Card provider.

Every month, the P-Card hard close is conducted as follows:

  1. Two weeks before the hard close deadline, users are notified by the P-Card Team of the date and time of the scheduled hard close. If not yet completed, Users are instructed to reconcile and approve all transactions for the current billing period. Note:  Approved transactions with no errors will post to the financials on a nightly basis. We recommend that Reconcilers and Approvers reconcile and approve on a weekly basis.
  2. On the day of the hard close, the P-Card Team must review all “staged” and “verified transactions. Any transactions with errors or allocated to a sponsored project will be allocated to the default chart string associated with the P-Card.
  3. The P-Card Team will place all transactions in an “Approved” status and will process the batch.
  4. Vouchers are posted to the Financials.

After completion of the P-Card hard close, the P-Card Team is prepared to conduct the monthly audit of P-Card transactions.

For the scheduled hard close dates please click here.

  • P-Card activity runs on a monthly billing cycle similar to that of a regular credit card. The monthly billing cycle for all P-Cards is the 23rd of one month to the 22nd of the following month.
  • In order to account for all transactions within the fiscal period in which the transactions occurred, the P-Card Team has established a monthly hard close schedule for posting to the Financials. Typically, the hard close of all P-Card transactions is conducted approximately one day before the last business day of the month at 4:00 pm. All transactions that have been billed during the prior billing period, regardless of the transaction status, will be posted to the Financials.
  • Cardholders are responsible for making sure that all P-Card transactions are Reconciled and Approved in accordance with the deadlines. Failure to meet these deadlines will subject the Cardholder/Reconciler to the monthly review and audit process.
  • If a Cardholder/Reconciler is out sick or is planning vacation during the hard close period, they should contact their DPAD and have an alternate Reconciler assigned to the P-Card so that someone else can reconcile their transactions.

A monthly review and audit for all P-Card transactions is conducted by the P-Card Team. The review includes the following:

  • Cardholder and Approver sign off prior to the hard close deadline
  • Complete business purpose is required for every transaction (i.e., cards with food and hotel privileges)
  • Receipt is attached for all transactions
  • Use of the P-Card for a restricted purpose
  • Use of the P-Card for a split transaction

Repeat offenders will have their P-Card suspended and/or revoked. Additional audits will be conducted as necessary.


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