All Sponsored Projects at educational institutions are subject to the “Cost Principles” established by the federal Office of Management and Budget in OMB Circular A-21-Section J.8 (Cost Principles for Educational Institutions). A significant part of OMB Circular A-21 addresses reporting and documenting the time and effort devoted to sponsored projects (grants/contracts). The time you and your associates spend on grants or contracts, whether the sponsor pays for the time or the cost is shared by SIUE, must be documented.
Effort reporting is a method of documenting the work time devoted to an externally sponsored grant or contract activity and is expressed as a percentage of professional activity devoted to an account. All individuals who devote effort to sponsored activities, whether or not they are paid, are subject to effort reporting. The total amount of effort expended to accomplish the professional activities of SIUE faculty, staff, and students, regardless of the actual number of hours expended on those activities, is equal to 100% for each activity report. This normally includes all effort expended on SIUE-compensated sponsored research, administration, teaching, non-sponsored scholarly activity, and other activity. The number of hours implicit in an individual’s 100% effort must be reasonable and supportable to department, school, university and external reviewers and is also subject to audit review. The effort percentages on the Activity/Effort Certification Form must total 100% which means that the total of the individual effort categories cannot be greater than 100% for each activity report.
The grant or contract for which you received an award was based on commitments made by you, your associates and co-investigators to spend specific amounts of time on the project. The government considers this commitment a legal obligation. Failure to abide by this commitment or to properly document the committed effort could be viewed as a failure to perform under the terms and conditions of the agreement with the granting agency. If this should happen, auditors may disallow salaries charged to the project and the funding agency and federal government could declare the contract/grant void and seek recovery from SIUE.
When a budget is sent to a potential sponsoring agency as part of a proposal, the effort presented in the budget and the proposal narrative is established as a standard against which auditors measure performance, even if the sponsor awards less than what was requested. The initially proposed level of effort will bind the University unless the sponsoring agency is contacted and the level of effort identified in the budget is amended. This amendment must be in writing and part of the award notification documentation
The SIUE Office of Institutional Research disseminates, on a semester basis, effort verification and effort distribution reports (Faculty, Professional Staff and Administrator Activity Report). These reports allow the university to manage and document the effort charged to each account for all professional activity for faculty, staff and graduate students, including sponsored grants/contracts. It is therefore important that these reports accurately reflect time and effort devoted to sponsored grants/contracts. It is also important that the project director/fiscal officer of the grant/contract ensure that the committed effort that is being reported to the Office of Institutional Research is regularly reviewed.
Additionally, faculty, professional staff, administrators and civil service employees paid via sponsored grant/contract funds will receive Compensated Activity Reports (After-the-Fact Reporting) from the Office of Research and Projects on a monthly basis. The special notation on these reports reads as follows: I confirm that I have first hand knowledge of all the work performed by the above employee(s) and that the above distribution of activities represents a reasonable estimate of work performed for the period indicated. The signature of the supervisor and/or individual who has first hand knowledge of the effort performed on the sponsored project along with their title and the date is required. These reports are to be certified by signature of the fiscal officer and by the employee(s) receiving compensation from the grant/contract and returned to ORP. You will also receive payroll certifications (for semi-monthly payrolls) from the University’s Payroll Office. These certifications also require your review for accuracy and must be signed and returned to the Payroll department.
Without this certification, we are not eligible for reimbursement of your salary and benefits from the sponsoring agency. Failure to complete the effort report means disallowance of salary and fringe costs on sponsored agreements.
Reporting Periods: Compensated Activity Reports (After-the-Fact Reporting)
Faculty, Professional Staff and Administrators, Civil Service, Graduate Students – Monthly
Reports are generated and provided monthly for activities performed during the preceding month to individuals fully or partially compensated on externally sponsored grants and contracts for certification of activities and must be reviewed and signed (certified) and returned to ORP by the dates indicated on the report.
Reporting Periods: Faculty, Professional Staff and Administrator Activity Reports
Faculty, Professional Staff and Administrators - Semesters
Categories of Effort (comprehensive descriptions of categories can be found on the reverse side of the Faculty, Professional Staff and Administrator Activity Report .)
Includes all direct instruction effort.
Includes all activity closely related to degree-credit teaching but not included in “Direct Teaching.” (e.g. curriculum development, academic advisement)
Includes un-sponsored scholarly and research activities. Departmental research is performed with the support of a department, school or instructional program. Departmental research is all research and development activities that are not separately budgeted and accounted for.
Includes those activities associated with the visual and performing arts.
Organized Research/Sponsored Research Definition
Effort expended on all externally funded sponsored projects.
Assigned activities performed as a member of committees established to address institution or campus-wide issues or needs.
Committee activities associated with department or schools.
Time spent on university administrative duties not related to sponsored research.
Assigned activities performed for non-university groups.
Correcting the effort reported
Examples that require correction and/or adjustments:
Please call the Office of Institutional Research with any questions you have regarding the Faculty, Professional Staff and Administrator Activity Reports at Campus Phone 3415. Any questions you have regarding the Compensated Activity reports can be directed to the Office of Research and Projects at Campus Phone 3010.