Effort Certification

Certifying to the Effort Percentage

The certification reports are reviewed by the employee, principal investigator or responsible official to confirm that all activities (sponsored and non-sponsored) are reported correctly and that the distribution of effort shown on the certification report reflects a reasonable estimate of the percentage of total effort that was spent on each activity. Signing the report confirms that effort, as certified, reasonably represents the effort expended during the period. The report must be completed and returned within the defined deadline.

Who Should Sign the Effort Certification Report?

It is only allowable for the employee, principal investigator, or responsible official (using suitable means of verification) to sign the effort certification report.

Corrections to the Effort Certification Report

Actual effort should be closely monitored throughout the life cycle of each award and significant changes to estimated effort calculations should be made as soon as they become known. If, at the end of a certification period, the effort percentage reflected on the certification is not a reasonable estimate of the employee’s effort, the percentage should be crossed out in ink with the correct percentage written in the margin. The reviewing employee needs to initial and date each correction. The corrected forms should then be completed and sent to Grant and Contract Accounting Office for review and approval.

Retroactive Distribution Requests (Retro)

Special consideration must be given to the timeliness of salary corrections in relation to effort certification. University policy requires that the payroll distribution match the effort percentages certified on the effort certification report. Retros, accompanied by appropriate explanations, are strongly encouraged prior to the certification of effort. In the rare instance, should it be deemed necessary to process a retro to correct a report that has already been certified; the employee and/or departmental administrator must contact Grant and Contract Accounting Office. If it has been found allowable to process this salary correction, a detailed justification must be included, and the entire correction must be approved and signed by Grant and Contract Accounting Office. Once the salary correction has been approved and processed, a new effort certification report is produced for the required signatures.

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