Financial and Post-award Administration (FA)

Topics include: research cost accounting; auditing; OMB requirements for universities, hospitals, private sector; matching funds issues/cost sharing; financial conflict of interest issues; facilities and administration costs; purchasing; salaries, compensation, honoraria;  and travel allocability and allowability; working with sponsoring agencies and subrecipient monitoring.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

WS3: It's About the Money
Sunday, February 28, 2016 - 9:00am to 5:00pm

Content level: Basic

This workshop examines key issues related to budget development, review and monitoring, and explores the research administrator's role in service to the sponsor, institution and investigator. Special attention will be paid to assessing project costs, including personnel, consultants, equipment, supplies, travel, sub-contracts, total direct cost, income, F&A, MTDC vs. salary and wage base, and cost sharing. In addition, sponsor guidelines, institutional policies and the financial precepts of 2 CFR 200 will be covered. "Why do we have to do this?" and "Where are the guidelines that say that?" are key questions that will be answered throughout the workshop. 

 

Learning objectives:

  1. Identify core cost related compliance expectations associated with federal funding.
  2. Individuals will be able to support proposal and award management activities consistent with federal regulations.

 

Prerequisites: None

Speaker(s):

Kris Rhodes, MS, Director, MAXIMUS Higher Education, Inc.

WS6: Financial Research Administration: Confessions of a Department Administrator
Sunday, February 28, 2016 - 9:00am to 12:30pm

Content level: Intermediate

Department administration is where the rubber meets the road. The range of issues and growing amount of industry know-how required to be an exceptional administrator is a constantly moving target. Department research administrators (DRA) are the link between central administration and principal investigators in what sometimes may feel like a tug of war. The DRA is more than a source who understands the rules and regulations. The department research administrator is an innovative problem solver. Breakthrough research requires breakthrough research administration. Providing solutions to balance institutional compliance with emerging research needs is essential for department research administrators seeking to add value to their respective institution's research mission. This workshop will cover the best practices that will assist department administrators with post-award administration. Topics will include award implementation, allowable, allocable and reasonable costs, reconciliation, documentation, effort reporting, cost transfers, reporting, award close-out and samples of relevant audits.

 

Learning objectives:

  1. Discuss the “balancing act” between central directives and Principal Investigators (PI) needs, and learn to identify key financial issues in research award management. 
  2. Learn how to apply the best practices for Department Financial Administration in the current research environment.

Prerequisites: None

Speaker(s):

Marcos Garza, MPA, CRA, Research Administrator, Shock Trauma, University of Maryland, Baltimore; Johnny Toma, Georgetown University; Erin Bailey, MSM, CRA, Chief Financial Officer, Clinical Transitional Research Award, University at Buffalo

Monday, February 29, 2016

M103: Uniform Guidance: What's New, What's Not
Monday, February 29, 2016 - 9:30am to 10:45am

Content level: Basic

The new government regulations were created with the intent of streamlining the federal rules governing federal agreements. Understanding what is new in the regulations, what is different and what has remained the same is vital for research administrators. This session will highlight the major sections of the Uniform Guidance (UG) with a focus on the changes from the OMB Circulars and allow for discussion on how these changes may affect how we manage research awards. 

 

Learning objectives:

  1. Understand the structure of the Uniform Guidance. 
  2. Understand the major changes in the regulations.

Prerequisites: None

Speaker(s):

Ann Holmes, Masters of Science, Assistant Dean and Denise Clark, Associate Vice-President, University of Maryland

M203: Sub-recipient Management and Monitoring
Monday, February 29, 2016 - 11:00am to 12:15pm

Content level: Basic

This session will review the new requirements for sub-recipient management and monitoring under OMB Uniform Guidance 2 CFR Part 200 from pre-award through closeout. The discussion will involve case study examples and demonstration of a 5 Step Toolkit developed to ensure compliance with the new regulations: sub-recipient determination, risk assessment, mitigation, monitoring and enforcement. This session will be interactive so be prepared to share the best practices from your institution.

Learning objectives:

  1. Understanding the major changes related to sub-recipient management and monitoring under 2 CFR Part 200. 
  2. Identify resources available to ensure compliance with these new regulations.

Prerequisites: None

Speaker(s):

Donna R. Kiley, CRA, Associate Director, Grants & Contracts Administration, Research Foundation State University of New York (SUNY); Justine Gordon, Director, Grants and Contracts Administration

M303: Cost Transfers - Questions to Ask
Monday, February 29, 2016 - 2:15pm to 3:30pm

Content level: Basic

Are you asking the right questions when submitting or approving cost transfers? The Uniform Guidance allows you to make decisions based on a certain criteria. However, your interpretation may be different than others. We will review and discuss examples of cost transfers. If you want to learn how to know when a cost transfer is allowable, than this session would be for you.

Learning objectives:

  1. To understand the basic framework of Uniform Guidance pertaining to cost transfers.
  2. To understand the importance of asking the right questions.
  3. To understand what you may be asked to approve.

Prerequisites: None

Speaker(s):

Valerie Crickard, MBA, CRA, Associate Director and A. Chea Smith, CRA, Manager, Cost AnalysisUniversity of North Carolina, Charlotte

M403: Sponsored Project Closeouts and the Uniform Guidance
Monday, February 29, 2016 - 3:45pm to 5:00pm

Content level: Intermediate

This session will cover award management topics that facilitate the successful closing of awards. It will provide an overview of the essential components of awards management as well as identify key closing concerns. The session will discuss best practices for managing sponsored awards that will eliminate or reduce these concerns. It will also discuss the recent and pending changes to closeouts from Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Uniform Guidance.

Learning objectives:

  1. Participants will be able to identify key closing concerns.
  2. Participants will learn best practices to eliminate common closing problems.

Prerequisites: None

Speaker(s):

Tamara Hill, CRA Director, Research Administration Services and Jen Crockett, Assistant Director, Finance, Grants and Contracts, Emory University

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

T103: Burn Baby Burn: Using Burn Rates in Sponsored Project Management
Tuesday, March 1, 2016 - 9:00am to 10:15am

Content level: Intermediate

The session will educate research administrators about burn rates on grants from the Department, Central and Sponsor perspectives. Burn rates on research projects are now more important than ever as a tool for sponsored project management. The session will discuss how burn rates can be incorporated into your internal controls and why they should be. The session will discuss methods of calculating the Burn Rate. Why does a burn rate matter? What does a burn rate tell you about a project's expenses? How to communicate the burn rate to faculty? How to use the burn rate to project expenses? In answering and discussing these questions, the research administrator will gain in-depth understanding of how integral Burn Rates are to strong financial and project management of research.

Learning objectives:

  1. Understand, analyze and communicate their sponsored project burn rates. 
  2. Incorporate Burn Rates into their internal controls.

 

Prerequisites: None

Speaker(s):

Marcos Garza, MPA, CRA, Research Administrator, Shock Trauma, University of Maryland, Baltimore

 

T203: Customized Strategies for Post-award Monitoring and Budget Management
Tuesday, March 1, 2016 - 10:30am to 11:45am

Content level: Intermediate

This session will focus on an overview of the post-award process and will identify the stages and activities that are essential for budget monitoring. This will include a review of basic terms used in grant management and a review of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Uniform Guidance. The presentation will also review basic post-award management principals including common federal rules and regulations, such as salary caps and non-allowable expenditures. Correspondingly, participants will learn how to find additional information related to specific funders' rules. It will also review common mistakes and areas of caution when managing grants and the importance of good financial management techniques. There will be an active part to show participants various methods for effective post award management including excel spreadsheet templates and tools. Post-award grants management is an interactive process and this presentation will help to demystify the process and ensure good accounting practices.

 

Learning objectives:

  1. Understand basic grant rules and terminology to improve accountability, efficiency and minimize potential noncompliance with established Uniform Guidance guidelines. 
  2. Gain an understanding of various tools and techniques to monitor budgets and knowledge of common Federal and Non-profit budgeting principals. 

 

Prerequisites: None

Speaker(s):

Piotr Dybas, CRA, Post-Award and Business Manager and David W. Allen, CPA, Associate Dean for Business and Administration, Virginia Commonwealth University

 

T303: Preparing the Facilities and Administrative (F&A) Proposal at a Predominately Undergraduate Institutions (PUI)
Tuesday, March 1, 2016 - 1:45pm to 3:00pm

Content level: Basic

We recently received the first-ever F&A rate approval at Stevenson University, a small Predominately Undergraduate University (PUI) that is actively trying to grow its research base. This will be a guided tour through the short form process, including interpreting the instructions, gathering data, using pivot tables in Excel to analyze the data and working with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to resolve questions.

Learning objectives:

  1. Understand the short form application process. 
  2. Learn how pivot tables work and can be used in complex problem-solving.

 

Prerequisites: None

Speaker(s):

James Rose, CPA, CRA, Grants Administrator, Stevenson University

T403: Supporting Research Service Centers and Study Teams: Removing Barriers to Clinical Research
Tuesday, March 1, 2016 - 3:15pm to 4:30pm

Content level: Intermediate

With an increased focus on reducing research start up time, identifying futile studies and improving the quality, sustainability and efficiency of clinical and translational research, innovative and cost effective solutions are being actively sought. The South Carolina Clinical & Translational Research Institute (SCTR), a National Institutes of Health, Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) institution, is seeking to remove barriers to clinical research. South Carolina Clinical and Translation Research Institute (SPARC) Request©, an open source service center management system was developed by SCTR has been adopted by 11 other CTSAs encompassing over 30 institutions. SPARC provides a central portal for researchers to browse research services to identify providers and services to support their research and obtain pricing for budget development, reducing proposal budget development time from weeks to minutes. Billing compliance, status tracking, document sharing, work fulfillment, invoicing and reporting functionality reduce the administrative burden and cost of managing research support service centers. New functionality in development includes interfaces with other research and electronic medical record systems to create a research management learning system. Metric tracking, comparison of target and actual accruals, reporting and visualization graphics related to study start, accrual and financial management will be introduced to study teams in an iterative continuous quality improvement process.

Learning objectives:

  1. Describe three barriers to clinical and translational research. 
  2. Describe solutions to reduce administrative burden and support financial sustainability of service centers.

 

Prerequisites: None

Speaker(s):

Royce Sampson, MSN, RN, CRA, Research Assistant Professor/Chief Operations Officer; Randal Davis, Project Director, South Carolina Clinical and Translational Research Institute; Stehpen Skelton, Finance and Grants Administrator, South Carolina Clinical & Translational Research Institute, Medical University of South Carolina 

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

W103: Cost Sharing - How my "Free" Bahamas Cruise wasn't Really Free!
Wednesday, March 2, 2016 - 9:00am to 10:15am

Content level: Basic

Participants will learn about cost sharing concepts through the story of my "free" cruise. For example, I won the cruise but had to pay the taxes and port fees, which is mandatory cost sharing. I went on excursions to enhance the experience which is voluntary cost sharing. All cost sharing types will be discussed with real-world examples provided. A sample strategy for cost sharing commitments, tracking, monitoring and reporting will be reviewed and discussed. This will be a fun, interactive session complete with Hawaiian leis, tropical wear and a faux pineapple drink!

Learning objectives:

  1. Explain cost sharing concepts by relating the concepts to everyday events. 
  2. Make use of a sample cost sharing planning, tracking and monitoring design.

 

Prerequisites: None

Speaker(s):

Terri Vallery, CRA, Assistant Director, Office of Research & Commercialization, University of Central Florida

W203: Capitated Budgets: Post-award Financial Management of Fixed-price Clinical Contracts
Wednesday, March 2, 2016 - 10:30am to 11:45am

Content level: Basic

How does managing a fixed-price clinical trial contract differ from a cost reimbursable grant? Even for financial administrators experienced in post-award grant management, capitated budgets may present a challenge. Fixed-price contracts may require a shift in one's perception of and established standards for effort allocation, project periods, budgetary line items, billing procedures and reconciliation processes. The concepts of flexible budgets, amendable budgets, milestone reimbursements, negotiations with sponsors, flat fees, competitive enrollment and charges vs. costs become a new reality. Recent years show that even National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding is gradually shifting to capitated reimbursement structure for clinical research proposals. In this session participants will utilize sample clinical trial contracts and financial tools to address the differences between fixed-price and cost-reimbursable projects, as well as the post-award challenges and the benefits of capitated contracts.

Learning objectives:

  1. Define main differences in post-award management of fixed-price contracts. 
  2. Utilize concepts and techniques in managing capitated budgets.

 

Prerequisites: None

Speaker(s):

Pavel Kruchek, Director, Business and Financial Operations, Clinical Trials Office, Vanessa Bryant, Senior Budget Analyst, University of Utah