Effort is the portion of time spent on a given professional activity and expressed as a percentage of the total professional activity for which an individual is employed by the University of California. (Total professional activity includes research, teaching, patient care, administrative and other University appointed activities.)
Effort commitment is the amount of effort promised by the institution in the proposal or the amended effort included in the award documentation.
The total distribution of effort dedicated to all institutional activities for an individual must not be greater than 100%, including cost sharing commitments.
100%, nor nearly 100% research effort, is not realistically possible for individuals with significant non-research obligations to the institution (administrative, clinical or teaching).
If key personnel intend to reduce their committed effort on a sponsored program by more than 25%, the institution needs to notify the sponsor and receive approval (e.g. reducing from 20% to 14%). NOTE: Review agency re-budgeting rules as requirements may vary.
If the receipt of an award increased an investigators total effort commitments to greater than 100%, the investigator must revise the level of committed effort requested by communication with the sponsor, reduce effort on other activities, or refuse the award.
Sponsors recognize that the activities that constitute effort are often difficult to separate. Effort certification must often rely on a reasonable estimate of effort, and when estimating, a degree of tolerance (at UC, up to 5%) is appropriate. A-21 states
that "In the use of any methods for apportioning salaries, it is recognized that, in an academic setting, teaching, research, service, and administration are often inextricably intermingled. A precise assessment of factors that contribute to costs is not always
feasible, nor is it expected. Reliance, therefore, is placed on estimates in which a degree of tolerance is appropriate."
Externally sponsored research - including activities such as delivering special lectures about specific aspects of the ongoing sponsored project, writing reports and articles, participating in appropriate seminars, consulting with colleagues and graduate students, and attending meetings and conferences.
Departmental/University research - including uncompensated participation in study sections, peer review of manuscripts, or unfunded effort on externally sponsored research.
Instruction/University Supported Academic Effort - including presentations to students/trainee groups, mentoring trainees (unless specifically part of a sponsored project), and participation in resident training.
Clinical Service Effort - including activities for Universitys Faculty Compensation Plan & other affiliated Hospitals.
Administrative Effort - Including administrative activities, (e.g., Department Chair, Program Director, service on institutional committees).
Consulting and other outside compensated professional work including service on Scientific Advisory boards or similar boards.
Volunteer (individual community or public service), other activities over and above or separate from assigned responsibilities in the primary position, including serving as primary editor of a journal.
Veterans Administration Hospital compensated activities documented in a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) even if paid through Universitys payroll system.
If you are a faculty member and in In Residence series, you must have at least 5% effort from a non-contract or grant source. If you are in the Adjunct series, you must have at least 5% effort from a non-contract or grant source in any quarter in which you submit a proposal.
The government does not prescribe a standard method for providing the assurances required under Title 2, Code of Federal Regulations (2 CFR), part 220, but it does identify specific criteria for an acceptable method and provides examples. UCOP and the five major research campuses, including UCSF, followed these criteria when developing the UC-wide Effort Reporting System.
An employee, principal investigator or other responsible official with first-hand knowledge of an employees effort, or
A responsible official who used a suitable and documented means of verifying
Principal investigators and other faculty must certify their own effort.
Employees with first hand-knowledge of their own activities including knowledge of which specific federal projects are now benefited by their work may certify their own effort.
Employees without first-hand knowledge must have a principal investigator or other responsible official certify on their behalf.
Faculty may also be required to certify effort for non-faculty who conduct research supported by their federally sponsored awards.
Direct supervisors can certify effort on behalf of non-faculty employees provided the person certifying the effort has knowledge of all the employees professional activities.
UCSF uses a web-based on-line effort reporting system. Certification is accomplished by logging into the effort reporting system using your own personal logon ID and password, and by submitting the reports electronically.
UCOP policy states that "Effort Reports at UC may be completed with a preciseness tolerance of +/-5% per activity". If 32% of the salary was charged to the grant then the report can be certified at 32% as long as the actual effort was anywhere between 27-37%.
Yes. UCSF Administrative Policy 400-10 states that Principal Investigators who propose to head an extramurally-funded research, training or public service project must personally participate in the project to a significant degree. The minimum effort must
be sufficient to assume oversight of financial, scientific and compliance aspects of a project, and must be in proportion to the size and scope of a project. If a Principal Investigator accepts an award with no budget for effort, we report this as voluntary
committed cost sharing.
Per academic policy, faculty are responsible for (1) teaching, (2) research and other creative work, (3) other professional activity, and (4) University and public service.
Some sponsored agencies, such as agencies of the federal government (e.g. NIH) prohibit faculty from devoting 100% of their effort to sponsored activities given that their academic appointment requires them to be engaged in non-sponsored activities. As such, the following activities must be paid from sources other than sponsored funds unless they are specifically approved activities of a sponsored project:
professional activity which may include clinical activities
University and public service (University service includes institutional governance, service on institutional committees, and department administrative activities)
New or competing proposal preparation (unless you are currently funded from a K award)
For instance, if an individual works 1,000 hours in a six month reporting period, the individuals effort per activity is expressed as a percentage of those 1,000 hours. Effort always equals 100% of total number of hours worked.
Effort reporting is a condition of accepting Federal funds.
Principal Investigators and their campus departments are responsible for ensuring full compliance with effort reporting requirements. Campus departments and Extramural Fund Accounting Offices must take progressive action to prompt corrective action and resolution according to local campus policy when required, including:
Notification of the Department Chair or director for resolution
Notification of the Dean to expedite resolution
Notification of the Vice Chancellor–Research and/or Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor and request intervention and resolution
Federal awards from the NIH, AHRQ and the SAMHSA typically restrict the amount of direct salary paid on their grants, commonly known as the "salary cap." This is a legislative mandate imposed by congress. In these situations, the Effort Reporting System (ERS) recognizes that the dollars under-represent the effort and adjusts the Effort Report accordingly. There is no need to adjust the reports manually for "salary cap" issues as the system has built in edits that will do this for you prior to the release of reports.
K awards are unique in that they often require a certain level of effort but cap the salary that can be charged to the award. Please refer to
Effort Report with K-Awards job aid to see how K-awards are handled for effort reporting purposes.
Cost sharing represents that portion of the total project costs of a sponsored agreement that are not borne by the sponsor of the project. In terms of effort, cost sharing can be considered committed or voluntary.
Committed cost sharing is effort that you promised to a sponsor for which you did not request funding. For example, a PI may offer 5% effort without salary, or may offer 10% effort, but only ask for 5% salary. In both of these cases, you have committed the effort in the proposal and you must certify that you actually expended the promised effort toward that project, and show that the salary was paid from another source.
Voluntary cost sharing is not committed in the proposal, but happens when you find that you work on a project more than anticipated and you are not getting paid by the sponsor for this increased effort; this effort is covered by other funding sources.
Click on the hyperlinked number to open the payroll activity for that project for the Effort Reporting Period. You may find it more useful to click on the View Payroll Details button to see all payroll activity for the individual for the Effort Reporting Period.
This column is pre-populated with the same numbers as the Original Payroll % column. For projects that require certification, these numbers should reflect the effort that the sponsor was asked to fund. Any change to this column will require a Payroll Expense Transfer (PET) to correct the Original Payroll % so it reflect the effort that the sponsor agreed to pay.
PETs are needed when any of the numbers in the Original Payroll % column do not match the numbers in the Adjusted Payroll % column. If you submitted a PET before reviewing the Effort Report, make sure the changes made to the Adjusted Payroll % column reflect this change. Otherwise, PETs should be prepared after an adjusted Effort Report is certified.
No, UC policy allows the effort for any grant/contract to be certified within +/-5% of the actual effort expended on the project. So if the Original Payroll % says 23% and the PI says he puts in 25% effort, you do not have to change the Adjusted Payroll% to 25%; you can have the PI certify at 23%.
No, they will only be saved on the current version of the Effort Report. Saved comments can be viewed on the View/History page and on the Comment Log page of the Effort Report, but will not appear on the version that will later be certified.
First, remember that ERS only requires certification of Federal contracts and grants, and some special state appropriations. Many of the projects that your PIs are on that are non- federal but sponsored may appear under Other Sponsored Projects; these
do not require certification, so you do not need to deal with them individually. If your PI has expended effort toward a federal contract or grant and it does not appear on the Effort Report, then he/she was not paid from that fund source. Please see <A href="http://controller.ucsf.edu/fin_compliance/files/ERS_OtherOptions.pdf"
target="_blank">Other Report Options (pg 7) for examples of when a sponsored projects needs to be added, as well as detailed instructions on how to add a sponsored project.
To activate multiple certifications, click the "Report requires multiple certifications," check box in the Report Options section. Once enabled, ERS requires that effort on each sponsored project line be individually certified.
Click the check box in the new Line Certified column to the right of each sponsored project. Then click the Save button. For an Effort Report that requires multiple certification, the Certify button cannot be used to certify the Effort Report.
In most situations, it is inappropriate to "un-certify" a report that has already been certified. However, in some situations it may be necessary to do so. There are two ways that a certified Effort Report can be re-opened:
the individual who certified the report re-opens it using the Reopen button on the View/History page.
ERS re-opens the report because of new payroll information
Note: Recertification of previously certified reports should be on an exception basis.
If a PI has already certified an entire report for another faculty member, there are two possible solutions. If the
effort certification is correct, the faculty member should add a comment to their effort report stating concurrence with the certified percentages. Comments may be added after certification by using the Comments tab.
If the effort certification is incorrect, the faculty member should re-open their effort report using the Reopen Effort Report button, make the appropriate changes and re-certify the report. In some cases, the PI will have certified only the project
line for his/her project. The faculty member can use the Certify button to certify the entire report, which will prompt him/her to remove the line certification.
The UC Academic Personnel Manual sets forth policy governing recall appointments for retired
faculty. Generally, retirees are limited to 43% effort, regardless of compensation. For additional information, please contact: