University of California, San Diego


October 25, 2000


SUBJECT:  Sponsored Projects Excellence Achieved through Redesign
                    (SPEAR) - Newsletter - October 2000

The SPEAR program has several planned and in-process projects as it continues toward the implementation of a sponsored project process capable of meeting UCSD's needs for electronic research administration. The following articles provide you the latest news regarding our progress in these activities. Please refer to our web page for further information on all of SPEAR's activities - http://ocga2.ucsd.edu/SPEAR.

I. Projects Under Development

A. Electronic Non-Payroll Expense Transfer (ENPET)

1. Description
The ENPET system is being developed to electronically process the non-payroll cost transfers. The objectives of the ENPET project are to streamline the cost transfer process ensuring that the cost transfers are processed efficiently and meet the requirements of UCSD policies. Users will select the transaction to be transferred in the Ledger Annotator and key the ENPET icon. The user enters the index or fund/organization/program of the receiving entity. And the system processes the transaction by routing it to the appropriate offices for approval and updating the Integrated Financial Information System (IFIS).
Extramural Funds (EMF) will sample ENPET transactions processed during the month for a post audit review. The purpose of the review will be to ensure that departments are maintaining the appropriate ENPET support documentation.

2. Benefits
The ENPET System is a FinancialLink based process and performs the following:

a. Walks the user through the preparation process giving advance notification regarding risk status and eliminating data coding errors.

b. Assists the user in preparing the ENPET justification by providing prompts on specific problem areas that need explanation for acceptance.

c. Assesses risk based on a series of policy/business rules and classifies transaction as "high" or "low" risk.

d. Determines the support documentation required for the transfer and provides a list to the user. Financial documents that are available electronically will be excluded from hard copy support requirements.

e. Generates email notifications to the PI, and Financial Manager for the accounting entity receiving the transferred cost. The email notifications serve as documentation for approval and acceptance by the responsible officials. Departments must retain copies of these notifications as justification of approval.

f. Allows EMF to focus their review efforts by requiring their approval on the "high" risk transactions through email notifications.

g. Processes "low " risk transactions without requiring central office approval.

h. Provides for mass electronic transfers of transactions when needed to meet deadlines during closing or reviewing contracts and grants at termination.

i. Provides a sampling tool to allow EMF to randomly select ENPETs for a post audit review.

3. Project status
Currently a beta test of 200 transactions is in process on the new system with the test results being compared to actual results in IFIS. The beta test includes representatives from three units in SoM, four units in SIO, and two academic/research departments from general campus as well as EMF and Internal Audit. After 95 transactions only minor problems have been noted.

The system continues to meet expectations and the beta test phase is expected to be completed in November. Help and tutorial menus will be developed using the beta test experience. January 2001 has been targeted for the system to become operational.

B. UCSD Coeus 3 (Phase I)
MIT developed the Coeus 3 software. In Greek mythology, Coeus was the Titan associated with wisdom, and the grandfather of Apollo and Artemis.

1. Project description
SPEAR has adopted a two phased approach to simplify our approach in installing MIT's Coeus 3 on a relational database to track UCSD's awards. In the first phase proposal information will be captured when it is released by OCGA to an external entity. Award information will be added to Coeus upon notification from the external agency. This information will be passed directly to UCSD financial systems and the data warehouse for campus use via the web. These are essential steps and must be accomplished as a preliminary step for electronic proposal processing. Phase two will address the electronic proposal preparation, routing, approval and security.

2. Benefits
System features include:

a. Capturing proposal and award data in electronic media and expanding the award data transferred to the Darwin Warehouse for campus use.

b. Providing a link to EMF for establishing the Index, Fund, Organization, Program, Account, and Location (IFOPAL) for the Chart of Accounts in IFIS with Coeus 3 award data. This eliminates a duplicate entry step and any hardcopy data transfer errors.

c. Establishing the base needed for Proposal Processing Phase II and the development of a billing module for the sponsored project cash management system.

d. Reporting for current and pending support.

3. Project Status
Currently the system is being modified to meet UCSD's award reporting hierarchy and sponsor code hierarchy needs. The Office of Contract and Grant Administration's (OCGA) award data is being migrated into the Coeus 3 database.

Data conversion is in process.
System installation is expected by December 2000 for data integrity review. The first phase is expected to begin beta testing in March 2001.

C. Overdraft System

1. Project description
For the purposes of this project, overdrafts are defined as negative financial positions caused generally by spending in excess of an authorized or available funding and represent unacceptable financial conditions.

The Overdraft System (OS) is being designed to:

a. Create an evaluation matrix for overdrafts that is easily initiated and maintained,

b. Classify and document overdrafts and their causal conditions, and

c. Generate detail and management reports that accurately reflect overdraft status.

2. Benefits
It is expected that OS will provide management at all levels (department, Deans Offices, central administration) the information needed to effectively manage over-drafted funds. In today's environment, each fund has to be assessed for an overdraft condition, which is labor intensive. The information generated by OS based on the user's parameters will allow management to focus their effort on the most problematic funds. With the improved timeliness of these actions, a reduction in the number and dollar amount of overdrafts should occur.

3. Project status
Acquisition of the needed programming staff has delayed this project. The OD Team is 90% complete with the PPM draft and will be going through a series of reviews with the DBO groups in October and November.

The system is expected to begin beta tests in March 2001.

II. Projects Planned

A. Sponsored Projects (Phase 2) - Proposal Process

1. Objective:
The Sponsored Project Proposal project objective is to install a system capable of effectively processing proposals electronically in a secure environment.

2. Scope:
Phase II encompasses the sponsored project proposal preparation, routing and approval processes. Within this process, security will be established at the individual level with authentication and access authorization capabilities. Roles will be linked to individuals that establish their rights of accessing, updating or approving a proposal.

3. System features:

a. Budget proposal worksheet with "what if" capabilities

b. Percent of effort with dollar override

c. Defined approval hierarchy in terms of roles and responsibilities

d. Links to legacy systems including consideration for:
Cost Sharing
Human subjects
Animal subjects (if available)
Environmental Health & Safety (if needed)

4. Project status
The Work Group is assessing the available options to determine the most effective approach to Phase II. The Work Group expects to forward its recommended approach to the Steering Committee for approval in January 2001.

Project development is targeted to begin in April 2001.

B. Cash Management Module (CMM)

1. Objective:
The objective of the CMM project is to provide an integrated system capable of meeting the campus cash management needs for sponsored projects. In this endeavor, existing cash management applications will be modified as required to achieve a cost-effective integration and eliminate duplication.

2. Scope
The scope will encompass the sponsored project functions of billing, cash collection, and receivables reporting for federal, state and local government, not-for-profit and private sponsors.

3. System features
For sponsored project activity the CMM is expected to:

a. Generate invoices and dunning letters,

b. Meet the cash draw down requirements,

c. Integrate cash collections through the Central Cashier,

d. Provide accounts receivable web reports (detail and management)

e. Incorporate customer risk analysis with management alerts.

4. Project status
The Work Group is assessing the system costs associated with the CMM. The Work Group expects to forward its recommended approach to the Steering Committee for approval in January 2001.

A process analysis team will be established to review and streamline EMF and Cashiering processes related to the billing, cash collection and accounts receivable management functions for sponsored projects.

System development efforts are expected to commence on this project during the summer of 2001.

C. Sponsored Projects Best Practices Project

1. Objective:
The objective of this project is to develop a model that optimizes the tools available in UCSD Coeus 3, Cash Management / Integrated Student Information System (ISIS) and FinancialLink for financial management of UCSD's sponsored projects.

2. Scope:
The scope of the project will focus on best practices for managing sponsored project post award activities by an academic department.

3. Project features
A project team will develop a best practices model for award management considering:

a. Levels of award complexity, e.g., one year versus multiple years

b. Risk analysis

c. Accounting hierarchy, e.g., one project versus multiple programs under one award

d. Organizational hierarchy, e.g., one organizational unit versus multiple units both external and internal to the primary PI.

This tool matrix within each business model example would include:

a. Managing award budget performance through the use of projection tables and local transactions.

b. Controlling awards by:
Transaction analysis based on risk
Account Code Validation in accord with applicable policies
Early Index Inactivation
Overdraft reporting

c. Adjusting financial activities by:
Payroll Expense Transfer (PET)

d. Managing cash for private awards

4. Project status
The Work Group is considering the Sponsored Projects Best Practices project. If approved by the Work Group a project team will be formed to define the best practices, develop model formats for managing sponsored projects, and work with HR in establishing a training program.

III. Future Projects

A. Sponsored Project Reporting to Awarding Entity
This project will be designed to facilitate campus efforts in meeting reporting requirements of the awarding entity. An integrated system module will be developed to:

1. Provide financial data in standard report formats for larger external agencies and a generic format for the smaller entities, and

2. Submit the reports electronically or in hardcopy format.

IV. Completed Projects

A. Account Fund Validation

B. Cost Projections http://ocga2.ucsd.edu/SPEAR/

C. Cost Sharing

D. Early Index Inactivation

For further information regarding SPEAR projects you may:
access the SPEAR Web site http://ocga2.ucsd.edu/SPEAR or contact Miles Bowler SPEAR Project Administrator Email address Mbowler@ucsd.edu Extension 21808

                                                Miles Bowler
                                                SPEAR Project Administrator