Effective July 1, UGA will replace monthly Personnel Activity Reports with annual and end-of-project salary certifications. Recent changes to federal guidelines provide a path for UGA to eliminate the monthly effort certification (PAR) requirement.
What is changing? Fewer individuals must report. In the future, only the principal investigator, rather than full project team, will certify.
Certification frequency is dramatically reduced. Certifications will occur on an annual and end-of-project basis rather than monthly.
Salary certifications replace effort reporting. Project salaries rather than percentage effort will be certified.
What are the expected benefits? Significant time savings. In FY17, UGA completed approximately 32,000 total certifications. It is estimated that the upcoming change will lead to a more than 90 percent reduction in the number of certifications. This will save thousands of hours of administrative burden to faculty and staff each year.
Shift in focus toward monthly financial reviews. Similar to current practice for financial review, units should continue to perform a monthly review of project financial reports to ensure expenditures are accurate and allowable. No certification is required for this monthly review. A monthly review can assist in finding adjustments early and facilitating timely changes.
What is the timeline for these changes? July 2018: Monthly PAR certifications will no longer be required. September 2018: Annual and end-of-project certifications will begin.
The Office of Research and Finance and Administration divisions are working in tandem with UGA’s OneSource project team to implement these changes. Detailed guidance will follow in the coming months.