6.2 - Effort Reporting and Certification

Effort reporting is the federally mandated process of reporting and certifying to sponsoring agencies that the effort charged or cost shared to a sponsored project has actually been completed. Effort reporting is a requirement of the federal government and the university.

  • It’s a reasonable estimate.
  • It’s expressed as a percent. Effort reporting should always total 100%.
  • It’s not based on a 40-hour work week. It’s based on % effort.
  • It’s direct charged effort plus cost shared effort.

All university faculty and staff who are paid by or who contribute time and effort to an externally sponsored project must report effort quarterly on a UM Personnel Activity Report. Activity Reports for university faculty and staff who are paid by sponsored projects (Exhibit P) are campus-mailed quarterly from the Accounting Office to Department Chairs and Deans for distribution to PIs/PDs. Forms should be completed and returned to Accounting within 30 days. Activity Reports for university faculty and staff who contribute (cost share) time and effort to an externally sponsored project require the submission of manual forms (Exhibit Q) by the PI/PD.

Effort certification is the responsibility of the PI/PD. The PI/PD is responsible for certifying (confirming the truth or accuracy of) effort that is directly charged as well as effort that is cost shared by the PI/PD, graduate students, and staff working on sponsored projects. The person certifying the effort must have first-hand knowledge of the effort expended.