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Effort Reporting System User's Manual for Departmental Administrators


Office of Management and Budget Circular A-21 requires that the allocation of salaries and wages to sponsored projects and other cost objectives (instruction, departmental administration, etc.) be supported by appropriate documentation, including an after the fact confirmation of activity. An effort reporting system that meets these requirements must be based on the following standards:

  1. A system which incorporates the budgeted workload into the official records of the institution.
  2. The system will encompass all activities on an integrated basis.
  3. The system will reasonably reflect the workload of an employee.
  4. The system will account for 100% of the workload for which the employee is compensated by the University
  5. The system will provide for modification of salary distribution when a significant change in workload occurs.
  6. At least annually a signed statement will be collected, certifying that the salaries and wages charged to sponsored projects are reasonable in relation to work performed.

The Effort Reporting System at the University of Chicago is based upon four basic steps for departments:

  1. to the extent that it is possible, set up an (accurate) initial plan for the fiscal year using the Multiple Action Form (MAF), or Personnel Action Form (PAF) to charge FAS Accounts;
  2. monitor effort and payroll distributions against sponsored projects using existing reports as well as reports unique to the Effort Reporting System;
  3. use those reports to make timely changes in payroll distributions via the PAF for future charges, and via Form UPP103 for charges that have already occurred; and
  4. collect signed effort certifications, and return them to our department by the predetermined deadline.

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