Research Administration

Efficiently managing the entire Research Administration process, from proposal development and pre-award requirements through post-award financial management and reporting, requires that we rebuild our current systems and processes. ATP will expand our capabilities and modernize our technology to meet the ever-changing requirements of the world-class research enterprise across the campuses of  the University of Wisconsin System.

To make this possible, we will expand our use of the Huron Research Suite, which will handle pre-award through post-award functions. We will also move many of our functions to Workday, an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system that will unite most financial functions in a single, cloud-based platform. These two systems will work together to streamline the work of researchers, principal investigators (PIs), and administrators.

ATP is a people-first project. What does that mean? For starters, ATP’s Research Administration Team has spoken with faculty and staff and gathered valuable information about current systems and future needs. We will continue to involve these groups as we work on processes, policies, and system design.

Meet the Research Administration Strategy Team

We are a group of Research Administration experts committed to advancing the mission of the University of Wisconsin System. Get to know us.

What It Means for You

ATP will deliver improvements that will benefit you, your department, and the entire UW System. These are just a few examples.

Faculty and Principal Investigators

  • Reduced complexity and burden related to effort reporting
  • Improved access to data pre-award through post-award
  • Easier to manage and monitor budgets with complete and real-time information, enabled by modern grants management systems

Pre- and Post-Award Administrators

  • Increased support for developing and submitting research proposals
  • Streamlined research contracting processes with dedicated software functionality
  • Improved ability to comply with sponsor requirements thanks to a single, integrated system

Division and Department Leadership

  • Better insight into the complete (pre-award through post-award) research portfolio
  • Ability to evaluate the performance of programs and investigators, and model financial forecasts more accurately
  • Reduced audit exposure with all documentation and data in one place

What's Involved

Conversations and collaborations across the UW System have helped us identify how we can rebuild critical Research Administration processes and implement modern technology systems to better serve our faculty and staff.

As a result, UW–Madison launched the Research Administration Modernization Project (RAMP) as part of ATP. That project involves the implementation of select modules of Huron Research Suite, which, combined with Workday, will allow ATP to transform the work of Research Administration across the UW System.

What We're Working On

ATP is currently in the Planning Stage, and our business process redesign work is just beginning. Learn which business processes will be explored and evaluated for use in Huron Research Suite and/or Workday.

Venn diagram depicting Research Administration business processes according to technology

This list may change during the Planning Stage. Design plans will be finalized in 2022.


Huron Research Suite Functions

Expand the menus on the right to see which business processes will be conducted in Huron Research Suite.

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Proposal Management

Proposal management includes all of the tasks and subprocesses associated with applying for sponsored programs funding. It begins with a researcher searching for funding opportunities and concludes when a funding decision has been made by the sponsor (refusal or award).

Your current workflows are likely to change if you:

  • Identify funding opportunities
  • Develop proposal packages
  • Submit and track proposals


The contracts business process consists of the review and negotiation of awards and agreements from a wide range of sponsors, while ensuring terms and conditions of the award comply with federal law, state law, UW policies, Research and Sponsored Programs policies, and the needs of the researchers. This process includes all funded as well as non-funded agreements such as material transfer or confidential disclosure agreements.

Your current workflows are likely to change if you:

  • Negotiate research contracts
  • Issue outgoing subcontracts/subawards
  • Assist in the research contracting processes

Compensation Compliance

Traditional effort reporting will be transitioned to compensation compliance. In the new process, the PI will review and certify compensation/payroll for all projects funded by federal or federal flow-through sources, as opposed to certifying an individual’s percentage of effort for all sponsors.

Export Control

This business process ensures researchers and administrative staff remain in compliance with the U.S. export control laws and regulations, including the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), Export Administration Regulations (EAR), and Foreign Asset Control Regulations (FACR).

Your current workflows are likely to change if you:

  • Conduct, or support researchers who, work with foreign collaborators
  • Work with a grant or contract that has an export control clause
  • Assist in the export control screening process

Workday Functions

Expand the menus on the right to see which business processes will be conducted in Workday.

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Sponsor Billing and Receivables

The sponsor billing and receivables business process includes invoicing, processing sponsor payments, accounts receivable management, and letter of credit draws for federal sponsors.

Your workflow will likely change if you:

  • Submit invoices for sponsored projects
  • Process letter of credit draws
  • Process sponsor payments and manage accounts receivable

Award Closeout

This process will streamline award closeout tasks and increase compliance with sponsor policies regarding closeout requirements.

Your workflow will likely change if you:

  • Have responsibility for the timely closeout of sponsored projects

Huron + Workday Functions

Expand the menus on the right to see which business processes will be conducted in Huron Research Suite and Workday.

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

Award Setup and Maintenance

This business process includes completing the award setup and modification tasks for fully executed sponsored awards. This includes thorough compliance reviews, such as conflict of interest, institutional review board protocols, and more, and setting up the billing schedule in the ERP.

Your workflow will likely change if you:

  • Set up or modify awards
  • Set up billing schedules for sponsored projects
  • Create and maintain sponsors in the UW’s systems

Grants Management

Grants management consists of all post-award functions including but not limited to reporting to sponsors, managing award transactions, cost share, cost transfers, subrecipient invoicing, and processing award modifications.

Your workflow will likely change if you:

  • Manage sponsored programs in any capacity
  • Are responsible for grants accounting
  • Submit reports to extramural sponsors