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  • 1.  Cost share approval

    Posted 07-07-2021 05:36
    Hello all,
    I would be interested in hearing how people handle cost share approvals. Are you using a separate form outside of Cayuse? Is it part of the Cayuse Proposal Form in SP? If part of Cayuse Proposal Form, is cost share approved at the same time as the full proposal is approved? What is working or not working about the current process you are using?


    Sarah Pratt
    Associate Director, Research and Sponsored Programs
    Western Michigan University

  • 2.  RE: Cost share approval

    Posted 07-07-2021 09:44

    Well, well, well.  THERE'S a can of worms ;)  What you're sort of asking is, "what are Chairs and Deans approving when we route?"  We know that they approve without REALLY looking at least half the time.  And yet, they could well be committing thousands of dollars of their precious budgets to cost-share.  And we're going to hold them to it.  That's fun (not so much) when it goes awry.

    What we do is this.  Yes, we include cost-share approvals as part of the standard routing.  The budget page in the Cayuse record indicates that there is cost-share, but we also attach out detailed Excel spreadsheet - the one we used to arrive at the budget in the first place.  We also indicate the source of the cost-share.  Sometimes the cost-share comes from a source that would not ordinarily be part of the routing chain for that particular PI; perhaps the Provost is coughing up some money, or the VPR.  We do, then, manually include those people in the chain on a one-time basis.  But I also give the Chairs and Deans a quick email heads-up, even on regular proposals that include cost-share, that they should pay particular attention to the proposal I'm about to route.  Without being patronizing (I hope), I say things like, "look on this page, half-way down, you'll see that you've committed to....  Be sure that's still ok with you."  That works ok.  I'm not sure, though, that all the Grants and Contracts Officers do that, and I wish the email could come directly from Cayuse, so it would become part of the record.

    What I think you might be alluding to as well is how to address the reality that Chairs and Deans are super-busy, and they do the same thing we all do - check boxes, sign things, do pretty much ANYTHING to get the email to go away.  Rarely do they dig in to a proposal to get a real feel for it.  I don't want them to meddle where they don't belong.  Routing is way too late in the game for them to be evaluating the science.  I've seen questions from Chairs such as "tell me about your power analysis..."  Holy cripes.  Not now!!!  And let's assume that between the well-trained PIs and the Research Development Officers we've got that covered.  Rather, I need them to affirm their commitment to the project and the resources outlined in it - protected time, access to students and equipment, cost-share..... whatever it is.  I don't have a great plan here.  When there's a new Dean or Chair, there's a nice opening to do some causual orientation to what routing means and what it's for.  Other than that.... I'm open to ideas from the brain trust!

    Andrea Buford
    Director, Office of Sponsored Programs
    Oakland University

  • 3.  RE: Cost share approval

    Posted 07-07-2021 09:56
    Hi Sarah!

    Like so many things, it depends. We do put all the cost-share numbers into the CayuseSP budget form and they are approved via the normal routing process. However, for things that are new, like course buyouts, tuition remission for GAs, waiving or reducing indirect costs (to use as cost share), and / or use of the central SPA matching pot (we call it MGR - Matching Grant Reserve), we also get prior email approvals. This ensures it's not a surprise when these things come through Cayuse.

    That has been a point of contention in the past, as sometimes (read: a lot of the time), by the time a proposal is out for approvals in Cayuse, there may only be a few days to go before submission. If those conversations start earlier, a chair or dean is less likely to balk at a request when it comes for "official" approvals in Cayuse.

    We have tried to convey that the purpose of the Cayuse process is for that full review and that prior email approvals are duplicative, but we still have a ways to go. It works for now.

    Augusta Isley
    Senior Proposal Manager
    Ball State University

  • 4.  RE: Cost share approval

    Posted 07-07-2021 11:17
    We use the SP budget form for cost share approval and it has to occur at the time of routing.  Each unit that is responsible for cost share is listed with their respective amount and then an approver that is is added to the routing chain automatically when they are added to the cost share section of the budget.  We also attach a separate detailed cost share budget in the proposal attachments for their review as well.

    Jennifer Mills
    Senior Grants and Contract Specialist/ERA Administrator
    University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa

  • 5.  RE: Cost share approval

    Posted 07-12-2021 06:23
    We have an Intent to Submit Form (which I'm hoping to get included in Cayuse at some point) and on that form we request if there's cost-sharing.  Cost-sharing is also reflected our our routing and approval form which eventually will be in Cayuse but is currently a form in an electronic signature platform.  The budget, including cost-share, is input into Cayuse. Cost-share is approved during the routing and approval process.  Routing and approval of the proposal is due 5 business days prior.  The form goes around with a final draft narrative and the final budget for review an approval, not in depth, major changes.  The ISF form at the beginning of the process is used to initiate discussion between the PI and their chair, dean, etc., so hopefully cost-share it discussed so it's not a surprise  when the routing and approval form comes around.  We are yet to have our routing and approval within Cayuse, so I can't offer any input there.  Hope this helps!  You've got some good responses here.

    Audrey Wineglass Foster
    Assistant Dean for OSP + Research Svcs
    Gallaudet University

  • 6.  RE: Cost share approval

    Posted 07-13-2021 05:02
    Good morning!

    Appalachian State Unversity is also in the process of building our forms.  Cost share will be included with the budget and routed along with the submission prior to delivery to a sponsor.


    Charna Howson
    Director of Sponsored Programs
    Appalachian State University

  • 7.  RE: Cost share approval

    Posted 07-20-2021 05:06
    Hi Sarah,
    We are requiring a written statement of the cost-share commitment but we are trying to get the school used to approve the cost share in Cayuse SP. My hope is that we can transfer to Cayuse SP approval only but that may take some getting used to as approvals often are last minute.

    Vibeke Svensson
    Director, Office of Sponsored Programs
    American University