As we move out of winter, we are finishing up our budget discussions with the Deans, Vice Chancellors and finance leads. We deeply appreciate their work, as well as our team’s exceptional efforts in helping the University lay out a clear foundation for the next two years of budget plans.
I also hope you had a chance to read the article, “Understanding Carolina’s Budget,” the first of a series of stories by The Well intended to help clarify some of our financial challenges and processes to campus. Our objective is to provide context for our budget challenges over the next two years. Although balancing our budget will be challenging, the economic outlook and pandemic costs are still being tallied and we must take responsible steps to manage our budget.
As Interim Vice Chancellor Nate Knuffman has pointed out, our challenges lie in three areas: a structural deficit (which includes recurring expenses, such as personnel and operating costs); pandemic revenue losses to auxiliary business units (such as housing and athletics); and finally, deferred maintenance. While we are working to balance our budget, reductions in spending are not the only way that Finance is carefully managing our resources – this month, you will learn about Karen Schinsky and the Accounts Payable and Vendor Services team and their work with the Supplier Onboarding tool. It is one of many modernizations we are bringing to campus to improve security and efficiency – which saves money in the long run.
As we continue to navigate the uncertainty ahead, I’m grateful for partners across campus finance who are committed to developing a path forward for the University.