100-Day Plan for Improving Research Administration
Since the summer of 2005, the University has been engaged in an effort to improve its policies, procedures, systems, and organizational design in the research administration area. With the help of the Huron Consulting Group and other experts, the principal focus to date has been to ensure the appropriate allocation of costs to Federal grants through improved oversight of cost transfers (the practice of moving to a federally-funded sponsored account a charge previously recorded elsewhere) and the reporting of time and effort.
In June 2006, President Levin restated the University’s absolute commitment to administering its sponsored research with the utmost integrity, highest ethical standards and fullest regulatory compliance (see link below). To accelerate the efforts already underway, the Officers, under the leadership of Shauna King, vice president for Finance and Administration, launched the 100-Day Plan, which began on August 1, 2006 and will conclude at the beginning of November. Andy Rudczynski, who joined the University as associate vice president for Research Administration on September 1, is also engaged in these improvement efforts. Steve Murphy, interim director of Research Administration, is responsible for the day-to-day leadership of the 100-Day Plan.
The objectives of this plan are twofold: 1) to reduce risk to the University and individuals significantly and rapidly in the area of financial compliance on sponsored research; and 2) to raise awareness about the University’s and individuals’ obligations for compliance in this same area.
The 100-Day Plan is comprised of ten initiatives that seek to address the major drivers of financial compliance on sponsored research at Yale (additional information about this plan is available at www.yale.edu/researchadministration):
1. Cost Transfers
2. Effort Reporting
4. Roles and Responsibilities
5. Policy Implementation
7. Business Process Redesign
8. Account Holder Reports
9. e-Procurement (SciQuest)
Some of the changes anticipated as part of the 100-Day Plan include: the upfront centralized review and approval of cost transfers; a new effort reporting policy; mandatory financial compliance training for faculty, lab staff, and business office staff involved in sponsored research; the designation of the Account Holder Report as the University’s standard report for Principal Investigators to use for reviewing the financial status of their grants on a regular basis; the deployment and adoption of SciQuest as a standard buying tool; and the elimination of the “VIP phone order” as a method for purchasing.
Information on SciQuest, Yale's online catalog and ordering solution, as well as enrollment and training guidelines can be found at: www.yale.edu/procurement/eprocurement/index.html.
The Department of Research Administration will be refining the 100-Day Plan as it learns more about processes and improvements, consulting with faculty, business office staff, central process owners, and other experts to ensure it is addressing the issues as appropriate. During August, a number of meetings to discuss the 100-Day Plan were held with business managers at the School of Medicine, Science Hill, and others. Additional meetings with business managers will take place in September.
If you have questions about the 100-Day Plan or other issues related to research administration at Yale, please contact Steve Murphy (firstname.lastname@example.org; 432-8090) or Andy Rudczynski (email@example.com; 432-8049).
To read President Levin's letter to the University on June 30, please go to: https://light.its.yale.edu/messages/UnivMsgs/detail.asp?Msg=17884.
To read the letters (June 30, July 25) of General Counsel Dorothy Robinson to the University, please go to: