The Post Award team provides services to assist in managing the administrative details of sponsored research awards after they have been awarded and serves as the primary point of contact with external sponsors when questions arise.  Our goal is to support the Principal Investigator (PI) and departmental staff by collaborating with all stakeholders to ensure compliance with all terms and conditions.

A Research Accountant is assigned for each department.  During the life of the award, your Research Accountant will provide financial and administrative advice and support services.  The Research Accountant is there to provide options and resolutions when questions arise.

Award Set-Up

After an award has been fully executed, ORAs post award team completes the set-up process in Banner.  The PI and Program Administrator receive an e-mail with the index number, amount of funding received, and the period of performance.  Expenses can then be charged to the award using the assigned index number.

If pre-award spending has been approved by the sponsor, an At-Risk will be prepared and processed by ORA in conjunction with the PI. An index number will be assigned to allow expense charges. The index number will remain the same throughout the life of the award.

Award Monitoring

ORA monitors expenses charged to the award to ensure applicable guidelines are followed for Mines, federal, state, and sponsor requirements.  Your Research Accountant can assist you in determining allowability of an expense.

For the following expenses it is important to know Mines policies and requirements, check with ORA to determine if the Sponsor requires pre-approval:

Travel (Including International Travel)
 – Travel Policy
 – Travel Information – Controllers Website

Equipment (Purchase) Policy
 – Equipment Policy

This Procurement Guide outlines the rules for procuring goods/services and at which threshold; the chart outlines the action needed for each cost For different types of purchasing methods at Mines, click here.

Change to Statement of Work
If your Statement of Work changes during your award, ORA will contact the Sponsor to see what information is needed. The change in statement of work may require a revised budget, justification, and other sponsor / technical requirements.

Carrying Forward Funds to the Next Budget Period
If the Sponsor allows carry forward of funds from one budget period to the next, the unused funds are automatically carried into the next budget period.

If the Sponsor restricts carry forward of funds, the post award team will monitor the spending and notify the PI prior to the end of the budget period of the remaining balance. This balance will be lost if not spent within the specific timeframe.  In special circumstances, such as loss of research staff, ORA can submit a request to the Sponsor for a one-time exception to carry forward the remaining funds  to the next budget period.

Moving Budget
Generally, a ten percent budget deviation within an expense account is allowed based on the total budget amount and no budget adjustment is needed.  If the deviation will be more than ten percent, contact ORA and we will assist in obtaining the necessary Sponsor approvals. 

Time and Effort Certification
PIs are requested to complete Time and Effort Certifications three times a year to document their time charged to a Sponsored research project.  View Mines’ Time and Effort Reporting Policy.

Award Deficit
If an award goes into a deficit status, the Research Accountant will work with the PI to review the various options available.  If there is anticipated additional funding, an At-Risk form will be completed and processed by ORA and the PI to ensure spending on the research project can continue.  At-Risk form

Financial Reporting
Federal Sponsors require submission of quarterly financial reports.  ORA will process and submit the reports as mandated.

For other types of financial reports required by the Sponsor, ORA will process and submit.

Award Modification
When there is a modification to the award such as incremental or supplemental funding, ORA will notify the PI by e-mail as to the amount and that it has been processed and is available to spend.

Change in PI

If a current PI plans on relinquishing management of a project that will continue at Mines, a substitute PI needs to be identified. The Contracts Team will work with the PI and the sponsor to receive approval of the change.

To request a Change in PI, ORA will need the following:

  • The new PI Name
  • The new PI’s current Curriculum Vitae and/or biosketch, and
  • A brief justification for the change and a summary of the new PI’s capability to conduct the research
Transferring Expenses

Journal Vouchers
From time to time there may be expenses on an award, which should have been allocated to a different award.  The Research Accountant will work with the departmental staff in preparing and processing a Journal Voucher. Journal Voucher Form

Payroll Redistribution
There may be situations where an employee spent more or less time on a research project than what was originally charged.  In those cases, the Research Accountant works with the departmental staff to process a payroll redistribution.  If a Time and Effort Certification has been completed, it will also need to be revised to match the payroll redistribution.

If the payroll redistribution is for a student working on a research project, the tuition portion must also be reviewed.  The percentage of tuition charged to an award must match the percentage of stipends charged. Payroll Redistribution Form


Sponsor requirements vary from award to award and are critical to ensure payment on the award.  Some of the most common sponsor requirements apply to allowable expenses, carry forward funding, financial reporting, prior approvals for certain expenses, and time and effort certification.

There are two types of invoices:
Fixed – Sponsor is billed a set amount, regardless of the actual total expenses
Cost Reimbursable – Sponsor is billed for actual expenses, not to exceed the total budget amount

Cost reimbursable invoices are certified by ORA.

Invoices are prepared and processed by a Billing Specialist according to the type:
Fixed– as listed in the schedule required by the Sponsor
Cost Reimbursable – bi-weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annually as required by the Sponsor

Once the invoice has been processed in the accounting system, the Billing Specialist will submit to the Sponsor along with any required backup.

A Billing Specialist will contact the Sponsor if an invoice becomes 61+ days past due.  If necessary, the Billing Specialist will work with the Research Accountant and PI to resolve billing issues.

Questions regarding billing can be e-mailed to

Change to Billing Structure
Sponsors can change the payment schedule on an award when needed. ORA’s post award team will work with the Sponsor to revise the payment structure.

Award Closeout

The PI will receive an email that the award is closing 45 days prior and on the day of the award end date.  

The PI is requested to complete the online closeout initiation form.  Once the form is submitted, the ORA Post Award team begins the closeout review process which entails verifying expenses and ensuring all reports (annual, final, etc) have been submitted as required by the Sponsor.

Can I take my research team to lunch and charge the award?

In most cases, no.  Meals are generally an unallowable expense except for individual meals charged as per diem while traveling.  Your Research Accountant can verify allowable costs.  

How do I receive a no cost extension (NCE)?

If at the end of your project you need to continue the research and there are sufficient funds remaining, your Research Accountant can assist as most Sponsors allow a one-time NCE.

How do I complete my research while waiting for additional funds?

ORA understands the importance of continuing research projects while waiting for additional funds to arrive. ORA can approve At-Risk spending for a set amount of money and time until the sponsor sends additional funding.

Does my research go with me to the new institution?

If you are leaving Mines for a new Institution, ORA will work with the Sponsor to determine if the award can transfer with you. Contact the Contracts Team  early so we can begin the process and identify the Sponsor’s requirements.

How do I pay participating Human Subjects?

An incentive payment in the form of a gift card can be given to participating Human Subjects. Your Research Accountant will work with you and the Controller’s Office to complete the necessary steps and documentation, including Tax Notice to the Study Subjects and Gift Card Acknowledgment.