iSRA Financial Management Conference - Tuesday Sessions

Tuesday, February 23 Sessions

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM EST

T101: Closeouts 101

Closeouts are a key part of the award lifecycle but often are left as a not so important task creating a backlog. Come join us for an interactive session to learn more about why closeouts are important.

Content level: Basic

Learning objectives:

  1. Define what a closeout is and why closeouts are necessary. 
  2. Identify when closeouts should happen and what preparation is needed.

Track: Grant Accounting

Financial Management Certificate: Elective Session

Speaker(s): Jennifer Crockett, Associate Director, PAVIR; Tamara Hill, Associate Vice President, Shared Services, Morehouse School of Medicine

T102: Essential Components of Structuring a Clinical Trial Office

This seminar overviews the structural components to facilitate the initiation and execution of clinical trials within an academic institution. Attend this session to learn more on essential systems implementation, clinical trial billing and overall lessons to be learned in setting up clinical trials.

Content level: Basic

Learning objectives:

  1. Recap of what are clinical trials and the types conducted.
  2. Review the function of each person is in clinical trials. 
  3. Define necessary infrastructure to conducting clinical trials.

Track: Department Administration Finance 

Speaker(s): Nicholas Vesom, Director, Clinical Research, Pediatric Clinical Research Center - Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland 

T103: Non-Financial Research Compliance for Financial Research Managers

Why do Post-award financial research administrators/managers need to understand compliance policies and procedures beyond those that deal with time and effort and other accounting compliance requirements?
Often, research compliance staff, protocol review committees, sponsored program offices, and finance departments work in silos and none may truly appreciate the processes, deadlines, and responsibilities of the other. To ensure timely communication with sponsors, compliant grant applications and progress reports, and audit-ready grants management records, it is best when all sides are in sync and can verify and ensure grant congruency and appropriate budget expenditures. In this session we will discuss these issues and strategize best practices that can be tailored considering the needs and available resources of the Institution.

Content level: Intermediate

Learning objectives:

  1. Explore best practices for maintaining quality assurance in grants management with regard to research subjects protections and compliance information. 
  2. Share strategies for communicating more effectively with colleagues to achieve grant congruency and accurate records for all appropriate offices. 

Track: Non-Financial Post-Award 

Speaker(s): Debra Schaller-Demers, Senior Director, Research Outreach and Compliance, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

T104: Rate Setting for Service Centers – The Basics

This session will focus on the concepts related to setting federally compliant rates for your service centers. We will start out by going over the “rules” for rate setting, then get into how these translate into actions. We will cover what costs can be included in the rates, how to handle the year-end balances, how rates for external customers can differ from rates for internal customers, how to handle subsidies in rate setting, and run through an example of a rate setting template.

Content level: Basic

Learning objectives:

  1. List three criteria for defining “service centers”.
  2. List three requirements for setting federally compliant rates.
  3. Describe four audit findings from historic audits concerning service center rates.

Track: Advanced Finance Topics

Financial Management Certificate: Elective Session

Speaker(s): Caroline Beeman, Director, Maximus Higher Education Consulting 

12:30 PM - 1:30 PM EST

T201: Strategies for Working with Central Finance Offices – Pre/Post Award

The clinical research finance operations that support the clinical research studies are complex and can be frustrating for many department personnel. The complexity is a result of federal regulations, insurance billing guidelines, cost sharing and the integration of clinical research and clinical operations. When developing the study budget, department personnel are tasked with estimating the cost of the study requirements; however, the budget may not reflect actual costs as a result of clinical activity required to medically care for the study participants. In addition to this challenge, these personnel must understand insurance billing guidelines and be able to adjust for how a patient’s condition at the time of the scheduled study test/procedure can impact their study budget. To be successful, the department personnel must work seamlessly with the central finance offices. This presentation describes strategies and best practices to facility this relationship.

Content level: Intermediate

Learning objectives:

  1. Evaluating best practices for managing financial aspects of a clinical research study.
  2. Describe estimating vs. actual costs of fulfilling study requirements.
  3. Describe various techniques for managing the relationship with central finance offices.

Track: Department Administration Finance

Financial Management Certificate: Elective Session

Speaker(s): Erika Stevens, Principal, RTR; Mary Veazie, Executive Director, Clinical Research Finance, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

T202: Research Grant Fraud: Complaints, Investigations, Disclosures and Enforcement 

All types of research grants are prone to fraud including: submitting a false grant application, using grant money for other research projects or personal expenses, falsifying results, or simply overcharging for time. Any improper use of federal research grants or research misconduct may cause the researchers or the institution to be liable under the False Claims Act, Civil Monetary Penalties Law, and administrative authorities to recover funds and terminate grants among other actions. We hope to efficiently basic concepts in order to move into in depth discussion of efforts to investigate allegations of fraud with the following learning objectives.

Content level: Intermediate

Learning objectives:

  1. Discuss the legal framework for liability for fraud related to research
  2. Review key challenges in responding to reports of suspected misconduct.
  3. Review processes for formal self-disclosures to government.
  4. Discuss challenges in responding to subpoenas and government investigation.

Track: Non-Financial Post-Award

Financial Management Certificate: Elective Session

Speaker(s): Kristen Schwendinger, Senior Counsel, Feldesman Tucker Leifer Fidell, LLP; Ted Waters, Managing Partner, Feldesman Tucker Leifer Fidell, LLP

T203: Leadership’s Guide to UG Procurement – A Roadmap for Audit Success

Principal Investigators often need to purchase goods and services to carry out their sponsored work but myriad of federal rules governing purchases and the many offices involved can make ensuring institutional compliance a challenge. This session will help sponsored funding leaders understand the current federal procurement requirements and how to use the federal Compliance Supplement to establish internal controls and create a roadmap for a successful Single Audit. Examples of implementation strategies and approaches will also be shared.

Content level: Advanced 

Learning objectives:

  1. Describe the procurement requirements set forth under 2 CFR 200 Uniform Guidance.
  2. Learn how to use the OMB Compliance Supplement to guide your compliance framework.

Track: Financial Leadership

Financial Management Certificate: Required Session

Speaker(s): Dara Little, Assistant VP for Research and Sponsored Programs, Northern Illinois University; Jason Guilbeault, Director, Post-Award Services, Sponsored Programs Administration, Augusta University 

T204: Success Strategies for Effectively and Efficiently Managing Research Spending 

Sponsored by Cayuse. As post-award administrators try to help their teams and institutions be resilient in these challenging times, this session will highlight the tools and best practices for doing more with less in 2021 in managing research spending. Join two industry experts on the post award side - Heather Winters (past Director roles at UCLA and Memphis) and Chavon Rosenthal (past grants contracts and finance roles at UC Berkley and University of San Francisco) - who will share perspectives that draw both from their past roles as well as from their last 2 years in helping companies rethink how technology can positively impact post award processes. This session promises actionable ideas for best managing post-award spend to stay on budget, remain in compliance, and build a solid financial and resource plan with your PI. It also will showcase some of the technology that makes it possible to reimagine your team's post award processes in 2021 and beyond.

Content level: Intermediate 

Learning objectives:

  1. Review methods to best manage post-award spending. 
  2. Learn about the latest technology and tools for doing more with less in managing research spending. 

Track: Sponsored Session 

Speaker(s): Heather Winters, Solutions Consultant, Cayuse; Chavon Rosenthal, Lead Product Manager, Cayuse

2:00 PM - 3:00 PM EST

T301: CCRC: Clinical Research Revenue Cycle Management 

The field of Clinical Research is no different than any other in the healthcare industry, in that there are healthcare regulations and laws that impact its revenue cycle that institutions conducting clinical research must comply with in order to continue to provide care for patients, bill for services, and maintain funding. There are regulatory requirements and laws that impact each phase of the Clinical Research Revenue Cycle (CRRC): Institutional Review Board, Pre-Award, Study Start-Up, Post-Award, and Close-out. For this presentation, we shall discuss the compliance risks associated with the regulatory requirements within the Pre-Award, Post-Award, and Close-Out phases of the CRRC and how non-compliance with regulatory requirements across the revenue cycle can impact a clinical research department’s fiscal bottom line. For Clinical Research Departments, understanding the regulatory compliance risks is essential for everyone– including executive management (c-suite) to avoid significant non-compliance penalties from the federal and state governments.

Content level: Intermediate 

Learning objectives:

  1. Evaluate leading practices for establishing a clinical research revenue cycle (CRRC).
  2. Distinguish pitfalls and techniques for managing regulatory risks throughout the revenue cycle.
  3. Construct the high-level framework for effective and complaint CRRC management.

Track: Department Administration Finance 

Speaker(s): Erika Stevens, Principal, RTR; Mary Veazie, Executive Director, Clinical Research Finance, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

T302: Subrecipient Monitoring - The Basics

The session will review the requirements for subrecipient monitoring under OMB Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200. Topics under this session include: subaward vs. contractor determination, institutions policies on UG, risk assessment, risk mitigation, subrecipient monitoring, and more. The session will also briefly discuss FFATA reporting. This session will be interactive and encourages participants to share ideas from their respective institution.

Content level: Basic

Learning objectives:

  1. Explore ways to minimize the burden of 2 CFR 200 requirements.
  2. Recognize additional requirements for risk assessment and monitoring, and understand documentation obligations for monitoring.
  3. Review of FFATA reporting requirements. 

Track: Non-Financial Post-Award

Financial Management Certificate: Required Session

Speaker(s): Regnier Jurado, Director, Research Management Solutions, Office of Research and Economic Development, Florida International University; Donna Kiley, Director of Post-Award, Office of Research and Economic Development, Florida International University 

T303: Is the World of Financial Research Administration Evolving? What Does "Evolving" Mean and What Hot Topics are Upon Us...Or Approaching Us? 

The art and science of research administration is changing - but what does that mean for the financial side of the equation? Data analytics has impacted the way we function. Is that a good thing or an area of increased scrutiny and concern? We will look at how the evolution of technology and easy access to data impacts our lives. This is an interactive session crafted to share real life experiences and mold strategizes to use data analytics internally within our organizations.  

Content level: Advanced 

Learning objectives:

  1. Analyze and criticize the concept of data analytics. 
  2. Formulate visions on where data analytics may take us in the future. 
  3. Assess alternative uses for data analytics and how to internally construct a proactive in-house approach. 

Track: Financial Leadership

Financial Management Certificate: Elective Session 

Speaker(s): Denise Clark, Associate Vice President for Administration, Division of Research, University of Maryland, College Park; Ann Holmes, Assistant Dean, College of Behavioral and Social Sciences, University of Maryland, College Park; Marchon Jackson, Director of Sponsored Program Accounting and Compliance (SPAC), Division of Research, University of Maryland, College Park; Stephen Dowdy, Director, VPR Office, University of Maryland, College Park

T304: Maximizing Award Management Practices to Minimize Uniform Guidance Audit Issues Related to the SEFA 

As a recipient of federal funding, annually your organization undergoes the Uniform Guidance Audit and prepares the Schedule of Expenditures of Federal Awards (SEFA). Strong award management practices throughout the year can help make this annual event easier and ensure there are no administrative audit findings. In addition, your preparation can be enhanced by a few quick-win analysis tools at grant close-out and fiscal year-end. This session will review the required elements of the SEFA. The session will share best practices for continuous grant management and annual analysis to ensure the proper classification of the award data impacting the SEFA. There is an assumption that users will have a basic understanding of the Uniform Guidance audit and award management.

Content level: Intermediate 

Learning objectives:

  1. Understand the required elements of the Schedule of Expenditures of Federal Awards (SEFA).
  2. Recognize best practices for year-round account management to ensure proper classification of research data impacting that SEFA.
  3. Describe tools for year-end and grant close-out analysis to help minimize data accuracy errors on the SEFA that impact the Uniform Guidance Audit.

Track: Advanced Finance Topics

Financial Management Certificate: Elective Session

Speaker(s): Mary Catherine Gaisbauer, Business and Integration Manager, University of California, San Francisco 

3:30 PM - 4:30 PM EST

T401: Managing Cost Sharing and Salary Cap

In this session, we will discuss the definition of cost sharing and salary cap.  This course will help you to understand the impact of managing cost share. We will look at the impact of the cost share on the indirect cost rate and do a deep dive on managing salaries with salary cap. 

Content level: Basic

Learning objectives:

  1. Define salary cap and cost sharing.
  2. Discuss the importance and impact of managing cost share.
  3. Cause and Effects of managing cost share and salary cap properly.

Track: Grant Accounting

Financial Management Certificate: Elective Session

Speaker(s): Denise Wynn, Director of Research Administration (Decision Support), Duke University School of Medicine 

T402: The Role of the Post-Award Office in Foreign Influence Compliance 

Addressing foreign influence concerns does not stop with pre-award and the post-award office has a critical role in monitoring throughout the life cycle of a project. Effective strategies go beyond a "one and done" approach and educating post-award and departmental staff can expand your capabilities to provide oversight. I will assemble a panel of senior post-award administrators who have played an active role at their institutions in foreign influence compliance.

Content level: Advanced 

Learning objectives:

  1. Participants will understand the types of issues that may arise post hand-off from Pre- to Post-Award units.
  2. Participants will be able to develop educational programming for Post-Award and departmental staff.

Track: Non-Financial Post-Award

Speaker(s): Susan Sedwick, Senior Consulting Specialist, Attain; Jim Luther, Associate Vice President for Research, Duke University 

T403: Effective Agreements Management Processes Using Electronic Systems

Sponsored Session. During the lifecycle of a sponsored project, documents beyond the proposal and resulting award may be necessary. There may be a variety of related documents, including Material Transfer Agreements, Clinical Trial Agreements, and Outgoing Subawards. Each of these Agreement types requires unique skillsets and systems that are critical to ensure they are reviewed and executed to meet the timelines required by the contract or business. Adopting a systematic process is critical for negotiation tracking, turnaround times and communications; key milestones such as contract expirations and reporting obligations; and agreements modifications to track redlines and auditable changes over time.

Join this session to learn about the skillsets necessary to build and grow an effective Agreements function within your organization, and how electronic systems can be used to optimize Agreements business processes.

Content level: Basic

Learning objectives:

  1. Review how to manage different agreement types and their unique systems. 
  2. Learn how electronic systems can help optimize Agreements business processes. 

Track: Sponsored Session

Speaker(s): Tony Haber, Managing Director, Huron; Melanie Stapelman, Director, Huron; Lynda Wolter, Manager, Huron; Istvan Feteke, Manager, Huron

T404: Ensuring Compliance of Your Single Audit

This session will give both an auditor and auditee perspective of the key compliance areas of a Single Audit. It will cover key controls that auditors look for and how you can ensure compliance at your organization. Common audit findings will also be covered to give attendees a better understanding of how to apply this knowledge to their organization.

Content level: Advanced 

Learning objectives:

  1. Understand the key compliance areas of a Single Audit.
  2. Understand how to improve your organization’s compliance structure for audit purposes.

Track: Advanced Finance Topics

Financial Management Certificate: Elective Session

Speaker(s): Bonnie Cox, Partner, Assurance Services, Cherry Bekaert, LLC; Jason Guilbeault, Director, Post-Award Services, Sponsored Programs Administration, Augusta University