Award Set-Up Process Improvement Initiative

Sponsored Programs and Post Award Financial Operations are committed to achieving operational excellence and providing superior support to BU researchers. To further that goal, in August we launched an initiative to improve the award set-up process by reducing end-to-end processing time and increasing transparency and visibility regarding the status of new sponsored award actions in our research administration systems.

In-Progress Improvement Activities

  • Create a team of award set-up specialists, who work closely with Research Administrators but are focused solely on award processing and account creation.
  • Document a set of standard operating procedures related to award set-up.
  • Provide additional training to all staff involved in award processing.
  • Develop a method for tracking awards through the entire set-up lifecycle, from receipt to PI account notification, to measure improvement.
  • Publish current metrics on award set-up cycle times as well as track the status of outstanding account set-ups.

Where’s my Award?

Please click here to access an up-to-date list of all awards currently being processed by OSP and PAFO, including information on status within the award set-up lifecycle. This list will be updated every business day between 3 and 5PM. A BU user ID and Kerberos password is required to access this information.

Metrics: Task Force Set-Up Cycle Times in Work Days (OSP Received Date to Award Notification Date)

Overall Performance for February 2015
Transaction Type Set-Ups Completed Overall Average Overall Median Overall Range (Low/High) Average “Hold” Days
Advance Account 11 7.0 8.0 1.0/12.0 0.4
New/Renewal 35 17.7 10.0 2.0/95.0 6.8
Continuation/ Increment/ Supplement 44 11.2 10.0 2.0/68.0 2.4
No Cost Extension 28 8.5 10.0 3.0/12.0 0.1
Other Transactions 34 9.8 9.5 1.0/21.0 0.4
Grand Total 152 11.6 10.0 1.0/95.0 2.4
Overall Task Force Volume and Progress (Monthly Snapshot)
Transaction Type Monthly Beginning Balance
Completed Month of: Feb 15
Incoming NOAs: Feb 15
Total Current Volume
Advance Account 6 11 5 0
New/Renewal 22 35 28 15
Continuation/ Increment/ Supplement 26 44 32 14
No Cost Extension 11 28 18 1
Other Transactions 11 34 25 2
Unassigned 6 0 28 34
Grand Total 82 152 136 66

“Cycle Times” is the amount of time lapsed (in business days) between the date the Award Document arrives in OSP, and the date the Account Notification is sent to the Principal Investigator.

“Hold Days” represent the number of days a set-up transaction is on-hold in OSP because additional follow-up is necessary on the part of the PI or department in order to proceed with the account set-up. For example, an award may go “On Hold” if OSP must request a detailed budget from the PI/Unit.