Core Systems jargon buster

Core Systems brings standardised systems and best practice processes for colleagues across the University. These new ways of working also bring with it some new terminology; the jargon buster below provides a summary of some of the new language that you may find being frequently associated with Core Systems.

Is there a phrase or acronym that you think is missing from this list? If you have any questions on Core Systems terminology or any other aspect of the project contact the team at  


Absence category - used to group absence types for reporting and analysis. For example, you can create an absence category called family leave and associate it with absence types, such as maternity, paternity, and child care

ACE criteria - candidates will be listed in order of those meeting most criteria listed for the role

Assignment - details of the job(s) you undertake within the new system

Attributes - used to describe a characteristic of piece of information. For example a date of birth and name are attributes of a person.


Benefits - any of the University's non-salary components of employee benefits packages, such as health, savings, life insurance, recreation, goods, or services

BI – Business Intelligence. This is the reporting functionality in the widest sense, a ‘set of techniques and tools for the acquisition and transformation of raw data into meaningful and useful information for business analysis'


Candidate file - form containing candidate information such as personal information, work experience, certifications, references

Candidate selection workflow - framework to move a candidate through the hiring process. Includes steps, statuses and actions a user must go through before hiring a candidate

Career section workflow (csw) - the application process, including shortlisting, invitation to interview etc.

Chart of Accounts – list of all organisation accounts that define the classes of items for which money is spent or received

Cloud - practice of using a network of remote servers hosted on the internet to store, manage, and process data, rather than a local server or a personal computer. Core Systems are largely a cloud-based software solution.

Core Systems Optimisation Team (CSOT) - the team responsible for the ongoing stabilisation, enhancement and operation of the Core Systems applications.


Data cleansing - process of analysing data and identifying issues relating to the quality and cleanliness of that data (Examples include: missing data, inaccurate/incorrect data, inconsistent data, incorrectly formatted data etc). The aim of the process is to clean data to ensure it is of good quality

Data integration - whether related data sources or data items agree with each other. For example, the number of items on an invoice and the number of items in a purchase request, or the people in the HR system classified as receiving payment compared to the number of people being paid on the payroll

Data quality - accuracy of data. For example, the spelling of a name, a house number, budget code, invoice total, marital status

Direct reports - employees or casual workers that you are responsible for managing

Document Management - electronic store of documents that were produced in hard copy e.g. a place to store PDF of Right to Work check


Elements - allowance (addition to pay), or deduction from pay (e.g. childcare vouchers)

Environment - a computer system in which an instance of a computer program or software component is deployed and executed. Core Systems have multiple environments used for different purposes. PROD (production) is the live version of the system. TEST (testing) is used for testing of new releases, enhancements and fixes to known problems before they are deployed to PROD. DEV (development) is used to develop new ideas before they are tested. TRAIN is the training environment used to deliver classroom training with dummy accounts. Each Core Systems environtment has its own colour scheme to help tell them apart between one another.

ESS - Employee Self-Serve. Functionality accessed by the end user as part of a practice to serve oneself. This mostly includes (but is not an exhaustive list): Personal Information, Declarations & Qualifications, Absences, Benefits, Purchase Requisitioning and Expenses.


Fusion (Oracle Fusion) - is the name of the application we call 'Core Systems', which, when it is first purchased (licenced), is in its unconfigured state. The configuration process is what makes its functionality unique and specific to the organisation that implemented it. That is how over time Fusion became Core Systems.


HCM - HR module, Oracle Fusion Software


Individual compensation - compensation awarded to individual workers outside of the regular compensation cycle, such as a spot bonus or education reimbursement

Infolets - dashboard style tiles that summarise relevant information to enable decision making

Integration - process of linking together different software applications physically or functionally, to act as a coordinated whole. Example could include how Core Systems integrates with Kinetics, Banner and other University applications.


Management Information Unit (MIU) - official University of Birmingham structure used for reporting across HR, Finance, and Student Data.

MSS - Manager Self-Serve. Functionality accessed by a line manager as part of a practice to serve oneself with regards to actions performed for or on behalf of their direct reports. This includes approving notifications from direct repors, and performing tasks for or on their behalf (putting through absences, requesting acting-up etc.).


New Core - name of the project, which was in place since 2014 to deliver Core Systems. The project has now ended and the project team has been disbanded and reformed as the Core Systems Optimisation Team.


Oracle - company, which created the Core Systems (Fusion) application and is continuously working on developing it and making new functionality available to its customers.


Payroll definitions - determine payment frequency and processing schedule, and through the payroll relationship, they link staff with the payroll run

Pre-hire - the process launched for the collection of RTW documents and Academic references

PPM - Project Portfolio Management - the project module within the Core Systems application used to manage projects once they have been migrated from Worktribe (after award has been granted).


Quartlerly release - Core Systems undergo a quarterly release cycle, which is a drop of new functionality and fixes to known issues, which happens every quarter by the third Friday of the month. This deployment is being tested for 2 weeks prior to ensure it is compatible with the existing configuration and any bugs are fixed or addressed via workarounds.

There are 4 each year, and their names will begin with the last two digits of the year they are implemented, in followed by a letter e.g. 20A, 20B, 20C and 20D will be all releases taking place in the year 2020. 


Release - one or more changes to an IT service that are built, tested and deployed together. A single release may include changes to hardware, software, documentation, processes, and other components.

Responsive UI - an approach to software design that makes software pages render well on a variety of devices and window or screen sizes

Requisition - a word used in both recruitment and procurement.

  • Recruitment requisition: contains all the details of a job within recruitment section of the system
  • Purchase requisition: a request to purchase goods or services, which needs to go through approvals and a conversion process before it becomes a Purchase Order.

Requisition title (recruitment) - the job title for advertisement


Schedule - individual’s working pattern, for example, full-time / part-time

Single sign on - ability to access multiple applications with one set of log on credentials

COP - Standard Operating Procedure - a set of step-by-step instructions compiled by an organisation to help workers carry out complex routine operations


Taleo - Recruitment module being used in Core Systems

Termination - process that takes an employee or casual worker off the payroll, including resignation

Total compensation statements - snapshot statement, showing the benefits that you receive from the University


UAT - User Acceptance Testing 

User Group Permissions - dictates the level of information that is given to users to view in requisitions


Version 1 - the main implementation partner hired to deliver the new system 


Worktribe – the Research Grant Management functionality. Grants are developed in Worktribe and once they are awarded, the project information gets migrated over into the Core Systems application, which is where live projects are subsequently managed from.


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