Fluid Requisition for Purchase of Capital Equipment in NUFinancials (Training Guide)

This Training Guide will walk a Requestor through the process of creating a Requisition for Capital Equipment (Asset).

Purchase of Capital Equipment Requisition – Getting Started

  • Non catalog requisitions must have the appropriate Category and Account code fields for assets and capital equipment.
  • Requesters need to make accurate selections for categories and account codes.
  • Approvers need to review the chosen selections.


Definition of Capital Equipment

An asset is defined as Capital Equipment when it has the following two characteristics:

  1. Life span greater than 1 year
  2. Value over $5,000.00


Equipment Categorization

It is important to categorize purchases as capital equipment, if applicable:

  • to maintain an accurate inventory of Northwestern’s capital equipment (physical existence and financial value)
  • to process depreciation accounting entries to accurately reflect the remaining financial value of the equipment
  • to accurately report equipment and values to sponsors who grant funds for purchases


Asset Requisitions

There are three specific details to include for asset requisitions:

  • Category
  • Requisition Header Comments or complete and attach the Capital Equipment Purchase Form (this can be found on the NUPortal)
  • Account code

Step 1: Create a Standard Non-Catalog Requisition

Navigate to Standard Non-Catalog Requisitions

  1. Log in NUFinancials.
  2. If it's not already selected, select the Employee Self Service Home Page from the drop-down menu.

  1. Click the eProcurement tile.


  1. Click Create Requisition tile.

  1.  Click Special Requests to create a non-catalog requisition.

Step 2: Enter Standard Non-Catalog Information Fields

Item Details:

These fields provide information that NUFinancials includes on the purchase order after the requisition is approved. Fields that are denoted by the asterisk * are required.

  1. Enter *Item Description. (The description you enter should match the source description of the product)
  2. Enter *Price. (Zeros after the decimal are automatically added if you do not provide them)
  3. Enter *Quantity. (The quantity must be at least 1)
  4. Click the *Unit of Measure magnifying glass to open a Look Up window.

  1. Enter the first two letters of the unit into the Unit of Measure field.
    • Alternatively, click the magnifying glass to see the list.
  2. Expand the Search Criteria to search.
  3. Select the Unit of Measure for your desired measurement.
  4. Click the Category magnifying glass to look up the categories.

  1. To select the category of Capital Equipment, select the appropriate asset category:

Note: Choose the best match; you will enter more detail later in the Requisition Header Comments, or attach the Capital Equipment Purchase Form that can be found on the NUPortal.

Supplier Information

  1. Click the Supplier ID magnifying glass to run a search for the supplier directly from this field.
  2. Click the triangle to expand the Search Criteria section to search by Supplier Name. Enter the name of the Supplier that you need in the Supplier Name. Then Click Search.
    • If the supplier is found but the address is wrong, update the address through Supplier Change Request process.
    • If no results are found for your supplier, you can request to add the supplier to NUFinancials using Supplier Registration process.
  3. Click the Supplier ID/Supplier to select the Supplier.
  4. For the Supplier Location field, click the Location magnifying glass to run a search for the supplier location directly from this field.


  1. In Supplier Item ID, type the supplier catalog identification, if applicable. This could be the catalog number, quote number, or other unique identifier provided by the supplier. Not all suppliers utilize a supplier catalog ID, so you may not need to enter it.

Not all suppliers utilize a supplier catalog ID, so you may not need to enter it.

Manufacturer Section-NOT in use.

Additional Information Section

  1. Optional: Enter comments into Additional Information. Comments are applicable to the line item and not the entire requisition.
  2. Click the Send to Supplier checkbox ONLY if the comments should be sent to the vendor on the purchase order.
  • Show at Receipt box is not typically used or generally recommended.
  • Show at Voucher is not used.
  1. Click Add to add the item to your shopping cart.


  1.  Your item will appear in the shopping cart icon at the top right.
  2. When you are finished adding line items, click Checkout at the top of the page.



Shopping in iBuyNU (Catalog Requisition) for Capital Equipment

  1. Login to the NUPortal: https://www.it.northwestern.edu/nuportal
  2. Under System Logins, click iBuyNU
  3. Login to iBuyNU according to your role: (Requestor or Shopper).
  4. Search for items and add to cart.
  5. Adjust quantities (if you are searching in a punchout site, quantities cannot be adjusted when brought back into iBuyNU).
  6. Enter a Name for the cart.
  7. Click Checkout.

Your cart will be returned to Checkout - Review and Submit page of requisition. The cart name you entered should display in Requisition Name field in all caps (uppercase).

Important Notes

  • After you click Checkout, iBuyNU item and supplier data automatically populates the requisition form.
    • If you change auto-populated data, processing delays will result.
    • Do not change any of the following auto-populated data: Item Description, Price, Quantity, Unit of Measure, Category, Supplier ID, Supplier Location, or Buyer.
    • Do not add non-catalog items to a catalog requisition or processing delays will result.

Step 3: Checkout

The Checkout step is where you enter ship to codes, chart strings, budget check, and save and submit the requisition.

  1. Enter Requisition Name (maximum of 30 characters).
  2. Select Requisition Type as ONL, the Standard Requisition type. No other Requisition should be selected unless you wish to:
    •  Hold PO from Further Processing. Please refer to the Fluid Requisition - Hold PO for Further Processing document in the Knowledge Base for more information.

Requisition Lines Section

Optional: Adding Attachments

  1. To add an Attachment, click the Line Comments button below the line item.
    • Click Add Attachment > My Device > Select File > Open > Upload > Done.
  2. Once you’ve uploaded the attachment, click Done.


Step 4: Enter Ship to Codes and Chart String Fields

Schedule Details (Within Requisition Overview Lines Section)

All chart strings utilize Fund, Dept, and Account codes, at minimum. If you do not know which chart string to use, see your manager.

  1. To view the hidden section that contains the Ship to and chart string fields for a line item, click the Schedule Details next to that line item in order to open the section.

  1. Click the magnifying glass next Ship To.

  1. A lookup window appears. Expand the Search Criteria section to search by Ship to Location or Description.
  2. Click Search and select the appropriate Ship to Location.

  1. At this time, you can input the Attention To field, if it hasn’t already populated with the correct name.
  2. Under Distributions, enter chart string fields for a line item, click Chartfields2.

  1. In Fund, enter the Fund code.
  2. In Department, enter the Department code.
  3. In Account, enter in the Account code. See Appendix for Capital and Non-Capital Account codes.
    • Enter Project and Activity codes as applicable.
  4. To add another Chart String, click on the "+" sign at the end of the Chart String row.

  1. Click Done when all information has been entered. 

Step 5: Adding Comments and Check Budget

Adding Comments

  1. Header Comments:  Enter a Comment to explain the reason you are creating a requisition, and any other information that will assist in getting the requisition approved.  For example: Office Supplies as requested by Professor Smith.
  2. Justification Comments. If you want your comments viewable on the Approval Pages for PPS and all other Approvers, you should enter Comments in the ‘Justification Comments’ section.
    • For Capital Equipment Requisitions, Requisition Comments are required:
      • Description of asset being purchased: List the name of the equipment or asset.
      • Custodian: List faculty or staff member and department that will be the custodian of (responsible for) the asset (contact person, principal investigator, ). The asset will be listed on the department’s inventory.
      • Location: List the location where asset will reside including building name and room number.
      • Cross reference: List that this REQ is a related to a prior REQ/PUR if the asset is a consolidation of multiple purchases or mention that it is anticipated there will be additional REQ/PURs which will be cross referenced (ex. multiple parts, multiple payments, installation costs, etc.).
      • Acquisition type: Indicate if the purchase is new, upgrade, replacement or a trade-in. If the transaction involves a trade-in or another asset has been disposed of as a result of this purchase, note Tag # of traded-in or disposed asset.
  3. Click Save. Requisition ID is assigned.


  • If a current asset is being traded-in or disposed of, complete the Capital Equipment Retirement Approval Form and attach as support to the Request Asset Disposal or Transfer Self Service portlet.
  • NUPortal > Finance tab > Financial Related links> Request Asset Disposal or Transfer Self Service
  • If the asset being traded-in or disposed was related to a grant, contact ASRSP for proper recording on the grant for the sponsor records.

Check Budget

  1. Once Requisition is saved, click Checkout.
  2. Check Budget.
    • The budget check ensures the chart string(s) is valid and has no spending controls against it that would prevent you from submitting the requisition.
    • Successful budget checking pre-encumbers or earmarks the funds.

  1. A pop-up message appears regarding budget checking the transaction. Click Yes.


  1. When finished budget checking, click Checkout. A Budget Check Status should now appear.



Step 6: Submit Requisition for Approval

  1. Click Submit.

  1. After you submit your requisition, a Checkout Confirmation page appears.
    • The Requisition ID is available on this page. This is for internal use ONLY.
  2. The Requisition is submitted to workflow for approval. Click View Approval Chain to view approval workflow.
    • See the Approvals and Workflows articles for more information.


Appendix: Capital and Non-capital Accounts for Equipment Purchase 

Equipment Description

Non-Capital Accounts < $5000

Capital Accounts > = $5000

Office Equipment

77070 & 77010


Scientific Instruments

77080 & 77020



77090 & 77030


Fixed Equipment





75841, 77510

Movable Equipment



Capital Equipment



NTG Telephone Equipment



AV Equipment



Other Office Equipment



Government/Sponsor Titled Equipment



Music Instruments



Other Equipment (capital)



Athletic Equipment




For additional assistance please contact the IT Support Center at 847-491-4357 (1-HELP) or email consultant@northwestern.edu.

Was this helpful?
0 reviews


Article ID: 2084
Tue 12/20/22 11:40 AM
Tue 1/24/23 9:26 AM