Resource Allocation and Overall Budget Process

Type of Policy: 
Administrative
Policy Owner: 
Budget, Planning and Administration
Contact Name: 
Lisa Godfrey
Contact Title: 
Dir-Institute & Capital Plan Budget Mgt
Contact Email: 
lisa.godfrey@business.gatech.edu
Policy Statement: 

The President of Georgia Tech, within the constraints established by the Board of Regents, ultimately determines Georgia Tech’s internal budget allocations within the constraints imposed by sponsoring organizations, donors, and the Board of Regents (BOR) of the University System of Georgia. Georgia Tech's internal budget process requires all campus units to develop requests on the basis of the Strategic Plan of Georgia Tech and their own strategic plans. Institute executive staff receive input from the college deans and directors of other units and also from committees that make recommendations on fees for the coming year.

The following factors enter into decisions about resource allocations to colleges and other units:

  • Revenue projections, including the level of expected state funding and tuition and fee and other revenue
  • Budget requests from the units
  • Expected impact of requests on Georgia Tech’s overall strategic plan and on individual unit plans
  • Committee recommendations

The process begins in the fall with a review by executive staff and division heads of performance metrics that are to be used to help determine budget allocations. The process also involves the review of mandatory and elective fee increase requests from Auxiliary and other units funded through student fees and development of tuition recommendations to be provided to the BOR. Early in the calendar year units are required to prepare budget requests for the following fiscal year. Budget proposals address funding above base budgets and, if required, reallocations or reductions. Requests include the assignment of unit‐wide priorities and an explanation of how the requests address their strategic plans. In most years the President's Office conducts meetings on unit budget priorities.

The attached flow chart summarizes the budget process, explained in more detail as follows.

Procedures: 

Allocation Schedule
The process for determining resource allocations for the following fiscal year generally follows the following schedule:

  • July through January
    • Institute Planning Activities
      The Office of the President, which includes the Provost, Executive Vice President for Research, and the Executive Vice President for Administration and Finance, review the Institute’s strategic plan and the related action plans and also review performance metrics of the Institute’s academic and administrative units. The President establishes unit operating and capital budget request guidelines, Institute operating budget request priorities, capital plan guidelines, operating budget allocation policy and guidelines, and capital plan priorities.
    • Unit Strategic Planning Activities
      Each Georgia Tech unit reviews its strategic plan, including strategies, objectives, and action plans accompanied by resource requirements. Also, each unit reviews its performance metrics from the previous fiscal year and projections for the current year, to be used in developing budget requests for the following year.
    • Preliminary Central Budget Analysis
      Offices of the Institute Planning and Resource Management (IPRM) team perform preliminary planning activities, including revenue estimates, preparation of fee and tuition recommendations, and determination of mandatory cost increases anticipated for the following fiscal year. The IPRM office coordinating this effort is the Office of Institute Budget Planning and Administration (IBPA, or “Budget Office”).
    • Tuition and Fee Recommendations
      The following four efforts proceed during the November through January time period related to tuition and fee review and approval:
      • IPRM staff prepare recommended graduate and undergraduate tuition recommendations on the basis of comparisons of Georgia Tech with its peer institutions. The primary office conducting this work is the Office of Institutional Research and Planning (IRP).
      • The Mandatory Student Fee Advisory Committee receives recommended fee changes from the following units partially funded through such these fees paid by all students: transportation, student activities, technology, student health, and athletics. The Committee recommends the fee levels to the President, who in turn recommends mandatory fees to the Board of Regents. See the separate policy describing this fee process, which is coordinated by the Budget Office.
      • Units that administer fees may recommend changes to these fees for the following year to the Budget Office for review. Except for the mandatory fees noted above, the President approves new fees or changes to existing fee levels. See the separate policy on non-mandatory fees.
      • Academic units may seek approval of tuition differentials for professional masters programs. These are submitted to the Budget Office for initial review and must be recommended by the President to the Board of Regents, which approves all tuition differentials. See the separate policy on tuition differentials.
  • January through March
    • Central Budget Analysis Activities
      Preliminary allocation figures and detailed budget instructions, including salary administration guidelines, are distributed to units. Revenue and institutional expense estimates are updated on the basis of preliminary information from the Board of Regents and the status of the state appropriations act. The General Assembly is scheduled to complete the appropriations act by the end of March each year.
    • Budget Request Activities
      College deans and other division heads prepare budget requests for the following fiscal year based on guidelines issued by the Budget Office. Requests must be linked to the Institute and unit strategic plans and must reference performance metrics to justify the requests. The requests could involve reallocation of existing resources or budget reduction plans, depending on the Institute’s expected budget status and the guidelines provided by the President. The Office of the President reviews the Institute budget situation with input from IPRM and holds budget meetings with the major division heads. The Office of the President establishes priorities for the Institute budget following consideration of unit requests and projections of resources available.
    • Preliminary Resource Allocation Decisions
      The Office of the President determines preliminary allocations and/or budget reductions based on expected resource level information available at the end of March. These decisions are made on the basis of a review of the Georgia Tech Strategic Plan and previous and projected performance data such as student enrollment.
  • April and May
    • Resource Allocation Activities
    • The Board of Regents is scheduled to approve the following at its April meeting:
      • Tuition rates
      • Mandatory fee rates (fees paid by all students such as student activities, student health, transportation, and athletics)
      • Budget allocations to Georgia Tech on the basis of the approved appropriations act.
      Budget letters with allocations and guidelines are issued to the campus units by IBPA per instructions from the Office of the President. These include pay raise guidelines based on the Legislature’s and the Board of Regents’ guidelines.
    • Detailed Budget Preparation
      Campus units prepare detailed “Original Budgets” within the resource allocation and pay raise guidelines. The tool used for this preparation is the Internet Budgeting Solution (IBS).
  • May and June
    • Final Budget Activities
      The individual unit budgets are reviewed and incorporated into the Institute's budget. This final Original Budget is sent to the Board of Regents.
    • Establishing and Executing Approved Original Budget
      The Budget Office works with campus units to establish final budgets for implementation in the new fiscal year.

Related Documents: 
Map of Georgia Tech

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