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General Ledger (GL) coding system

In order to assist staff select the correct detail code, Finance and IT Services are pleased to announce that you can now access a search application that will allow the user to see which detail codes to use by inputting keywords or phrases. This can be accessed at the following link:

The GL coding structure allows both allocation and grouping of transactions through the University’s finance system. This information then feeds through to various sources such as the University’s financial statements as well as budget monitoring reports used by schools and units.

GL Code Format

All GL codes follow the same format;


X – Denotes the Company Number for a transaction. Primarily this will be the number ‘1’ for all University transactions though subsidiary transactions are allocated separate Company Numbers.

ZZZZ – Denotes the Cost Centre which can be any four characters though usually follows the format of three letters followed by a number. Cost centres are generally specific to individual schools or units within the University though there is no limit to the number of Cost Centres ‘owned’ by a school or unit. A full list of cost centres for your school or unit can be viewed here

AAAAAA – Denotes the Analysis Code (sometimes known as Project Code). This is limited to six characters though can be letters, numbers or a combination of both. Again these codes are generally specific to an individual department but there is no limit on the number of Analysis Codes a school or unit has. A full list of available Analysis Codes for your school or unit can be viewed here

0000 – Denotes the Detail Code for any transaction. This is limited to four characters and is always four numbers. Detail codes are not specific to individual departments and are available to all schools and units across the University. A full list of Detail Codes can be viewed here

Transaction Types

The transaction type describes how the transaction originated e.g. if it was a sales invoice, purchase invoice or a manual journal transfer.

The full list of transaction types and their description can be found here: Transaction Types (PDF, 63 KB).


Financial Advice and Support

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Scotland, United Kingdom



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