Why Modernize Research Administration?

Because world-class research demands world-class support

The processes supporting research and sponsored programs administration at the University of Wisconsin do not take full advantage of current technologies and national best practices. As a result, there have been challenges to effectively bolstering the efforts of investigators across the UW. The Research Administration Strategy Team aims to reverse that trend.

Under the stewardship of the Administrative Transformation Program (ATP), the Research Administration Strategy Team will work hand in hand with UW’s research community to implement a suite of tools that will improve communication, streamline the proposal and award-creation process, and integrate the management of sponsored research funding with ATP’s Systemwide enterprise resource planning (ERP) tool. Together, these efforts will pave the way for the expansion and advancement of UW’s research enterprise.

Current Limitations

  • The needs of each school and sponsored program have been addressed with a multitude of patchwork solutions, making processes complex and inefficient.
  • The spreadsheets and tracking forms used by core offices fail to capture the information required for accurate reporting.
  • The path from proposal development to award is not standardized or organized in a single integrated system, which leads to delays, confusion, and greater administrative burdens.

Future-State Solutions

  • Implement a fully integrated software solution to support the administration of research and sponsored programs.
  • Integrate the software solution with the new Systemwide cloud-based ERP to provide a more seamless user experience.
  • Procure a software solution with integrated contracting and negotiation functions to improve contracting effectiveness and enhance the user experience of faculty and sponsors.
  • Streamline business processes.


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Enhanced User Experience

  • Create a one-stop shop for researchers and staff. Accessible 24/7/365.
  • Develop guided workflows that help faculty and staff navigate the pre-award process more efficiently.
  • Provide transparency into workflow statuses throughout the process.
  • Offer easily accessible data for faculty, staff, and university leadership.

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Increased Compliance

  • Integrate with critical compliance activities, such as IRB, IACUC, COI.
  • Deliver timely reminders to researchers and staff for pending work items.
  • Ensure proposal submission is accurate and complete.
  • Automate SF 424 submissions across NIH, NSF, DoD, and more.
  • Reduce audit exposure with all documentation and data in one place.

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Improved Business Processes

  • Eliminate the need to manually track correspondence.
  • Automate proposal creation by repurposing large amounts of data.
  • Create dynamic workflow, routing, and approval processes.
  • Identify bottlenecks and make informed decisions about process improvements.

Get Involved

Do you use campus financial, HR, or research administration systems? Share your experiences and your hopes for this program.


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