Post Award Process
[Also see the Principal Investigator Handbook, produced by ORS and SPA.]
Upon receipt of an award document, the Office of Research Services (ORS) reviews the terms and conditions, the budget, and other aspects of the award for acceptability. Factors that generally are taken into consideration include:
- Do the terms and conditions impose unreasonable restrictions or requirements on the Principal Investigator (PI) and/or the university (e.g., in the areas of publication rights, insurance/indemnification, intellectual property, financial reporting documentation and timeframes, compliance, cost sharing or matching)?
- Is the amount awarded sufficient (e.g., the sponsor may have awarded less funding than originally requested, in which case a change in scope may be warranted)?
- Are the researchers still in a position to undertake the project?
- Has the sponsor requested changes that impact regulatory compliance (e.g., if the sponsor requests a change that will affect a submitted or approved human subjects protocol, the PI must ensure that an amendment is provided to the appropriate regulatory committee in a timely manner)?
- Does the sponsor require changes that affect the work, budget, or regulatory compliance for a subawardee (in which case the PI and ORS will work together to communicate the changes to the subawardee institution and resolve the changes)?
In some cases, negotiation with the sponsor may be necessary before an award can be accepted. ORS will consult with PIs and keep them informed of any negotiations. ORS may also consult with other units within the university as needed (e.g., General Counsel, Purchasing, Human Resources, Academic Affairs, Risk Management).
After the award had been accepted, ORS uploads it to the PTAP (along with the approved budget, if different from proposed) and notifies Sponsored Program Accounting (SPA) that an accounting unit (AU) for the project, allowing expenditures of grant/contract funds, can now be established. Click Account Codes Explained for a listing and explanation of account codes that are typically used in grant AUs to record expenditures." Click here for a listing of whom to contact if you have questions about administering your grant.
In order for an accounting unit to be established the faculty principal investigator (PI) or project director (PD) is responsible for providing the following to ORS:
- An award document indicating the amount of the award, time period of the award if applicable, method of payment, purpose of the award and terms & conditions of the award, including reporting requirements, if any.
- Fully executed PTAP
- Copy of proposal, correspondence and revised budget, if one was submitted.
- Approved budget for the amount of the award
- Source of cost sharing or matching funds, if applicable
- Completion of PI/PD certification form, which will be provided by ORS
- Approvals for all compliance activities must be complete, including human and animal subjects, radiation and laboratory safety
- If any subcontracts will be issued for the award, the following information is needed:
- Name & Address
- Contact Person & Title
- Phone #
- Fax #
- Name of Key Personnel
- Name & Address of person or persons in subcontractor’s organization to receive "notices"
- Time Period
- Maximum Amount
- Scope of Work
If you are certain that you will be receiving funding, but the official award notice has not yet arrived, you can request that an Accounting Unit be established in advance of the official notice being received, by using the form available here. You can use the same form if your award is from a federal agency that allows pre-award costs to be incurred.
SPA is responsible for the financial administration of grants and contracts including invoicing and financial reporting.
ORS is responsible for continuing contact with sponsors regarding changes such as: PI/PD changes, changes in the scope of work, budget revisions, changes in the award amount or timetable, including no cost extensions. Requests to sponsors for changes may be initiated by PIs/PDs. Official requests should be signed by the PI/PD and the Associate Provost for Research (in ORS). Faculty are encouraged to work with program officers of sponsors to alert them to the need for changes.
The PI/PD is responsible for conducting the project in accordance with the highest professional standards and for assuring that the project is executed as proposed in the application for funding. The PI/PD is also responsible for adherence to University regulations as well as the terms and conditions of the award, assuring the appropriateness of expenditures, documenting any cost share that is required, and submitting progress reports to the sponsor (copy to ORS) as required by the terms of the award.
With respect to documenting cost share, such documentation is to be submitted to SPA allowing enough time for SPA to confirm and certify those costs. Please allow at least five business days for that review process!