Published by the HMS Office of Research Administration every Thursday, this weekly email digest includes summaries of information pertaining to Research Administration news, updates, business processes, policies, and training throughout the Longwood Medical Area, Harvard University, and nationally. Submissions are welcome for consideration and should be emailed to the Research Admin Inbox by end of day, on Wednesdays. Questions? Contact Victoria Holland. 

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ORA Tip of the Week

  • Clearing Late Charges: GMAS Transaction Monitoring Module

    As part of Transaction Monitoring, GMAS automatically flags transactions posted outside of the award period, which include pre-award spending and charges after the award end date. GMAS will not flag pre-award expenditures if they are associated with an account that has an “IDC rate effective date” prior to the date of the expense (e.g. account set up to allow pre-award spending). For transactions after the award period, GMAS will automatically flag expenditures as they post to the GL. However, when an award is pending a no-cost extension or additional funding, users can manage costs outside of the period by selecting the checkboxes to “approve transactions to the account(s) for 30 days”. Once selected, GMAS will discontinue flagging these charges for the next 30 days. After 30 days, new transactions that have posted will be flagged, but users can choose to use the checkboxes to defer the flagging of late charges an additional 30 days. 

  • Customizing Object Codes for Transaction Monitoring

    The GMAS Transaction Monitoring module provides an automated and standardized approach for flagging high risk expenditures that could pose a compliance risk. The methodology for flagging these transactions is outlined in the Transaction Monitoring Rules document. Since each award has its own specific terms and conditions, the Transaction Monitoring module can be customized for each award. This can be done by updating the list of approved and monitored object codes. It's recommended that department administrators review and update the list of “approved object codes” and “monitored object codes” at the time of award to align them with sponsor budgets and expenditure allowability. This helps to avoid GMAS erroneously flagging transactions that are allowable and for GMAS to assist with flagging additional object codes that should be monitored, per the terms and conditions of the award. 

  • Policy on Harvard Names or Insignias 

    Use of the Harvard and HMS names and insignias is governed by University policy. Before using the Harvard or HMS names, in any form, in the title of a sponsored project/program, the PI should seek approval. For use of “Harvard,” email the Trademark Program at as soon as possible, providing the project or program title and a summary of the proposal. The Trademark Program reviews requests in the order in which they are received, and further information may be requested before a decision is made. For use of “Harvard Medical School,” “HMS,” or the HMS logo, complete the form found at to send a request to the HMS Use of Name Committee for review. Determinations can take 7 to 14 business days from the initial inquiry. Visit the websites: Policy on the Use of Harvard Names and Insignias, and HMS Use of Name Policy for more info.

  • IRB Approval in GMAS

    If your IRB approval in GMAS has a status of "no study associated," link the funding (Project #) to the ESTR record. The IRB Team does not have access to make edits. Instructions on creating the link can be found in the job aid,

  • Preparing a proposal & the HMS Low IDC Policy

    Don't forget to upload the approved (signed by Office of Finance) low IDC budget tool to the GMAS proposal, by the 5-day submission deadline. The budget tool is required as backup documentation when applicable, and is reviewed in concert with the proposal budget. It is due to ORA at least five business days prior to the sponsor due date, as part of the administrative components of a proposal. Review the HMS Submission Deadline Policy and the Low IDC Policy on ORA's website.

  • Split coding subcontract invoices (B2P)

    When split coding a subcontract invoice in B2P, choosing  “Amount of Price” will result in pennies or dollars calculating off in the general ledger, depending on overall amount of the line. Requestors and approvers please be aware of this issue. Our recommended approach? To avoid rounding errors in B2P, split by percentage of price and enter a percentage with four decimal points to pay subcontract invoices. Make the first $25,000.00 of the payment a distinct line item charged to (8190). Refer to the second page of the Checkout Process guide for further info on how to apply splits. To avoid rounding errors, add a separate line and don’t use the split coding. Questions? Contact Meliissa Chu and visit the B2P website

  • What is the FDP Expanded Clearinghouse?

    Do you need to complete a lengthy institutional information form in relation to a subaward proposal or award? Consider using the FDP Expanded Clearinghouse. As an FDP member organization, HMS maintains a detailed profile in the FDP Expanded Clearinghouse, which includes institutional information most commonly requested from subrecipients. FDP member organizations have agreed to review the Expanded Clearinghouse profile rather than requesting subrecipients to complete separate forms. Many other institutions will be also accept this profile. Questions? Contact Kevin Ritchie.

  • How do I set up an award (in GMAS) with multiple accounts?

    Use the Account Breakdown Template, posted on ORA's website page Business Processes. In this way, you can accurately provide the amount of funds to be allocated to each account. The template expedites processing of awards and account set up, by collecting necessary information on account allocations in one place. It ensures that the ORA Operations Team has all the information to process the Action Memo. The template also enables department grant managers to easily allocate the direct/indirect costs for subawards, ensuring that the amounts set aside accurately reflect the department’s intent when drafting subaward agreements and amendments. Dedicated space for reallocation of funds between accounts, and a tab with detailed instructions to provide guidance is also included in this template.

  • eRA Commons Account 

    If you need an eRA Commons Account, visit the ORA Website Resources Page/NIH eRA Commons. Here you will complete a short form to request a new ID or make changes to an existing account. Bookmark: