Based on responses from our annual State of Grant Management survey, prime recipients indicated that they are facing greater pressure to track funds through to sub-recipients and report on performance. Twenty-six percent of prime recipients cited post-award performance and measurement as the most frustrating part of the grant process, compared to 21% of non-prime recipients.
Thanks to stronger award requirements, sub-recipient data quality and reporting now impact prime recipient compliance. Here are three tips on how to prepare and manage sub-recipients, and establish consortia grant reporting processes.
1. Stress the Importance of Performance
Before you begin to guide sub-recipients on new grant reporting processes, address the importance of accurately measuring performance. Grant recipients must be able to link financial data to performance accomplishments to ensure accountability—and prime recipients are on the hook for sub-recipient compliance.
Educate sub-recipients on new Uniform Grant Guidance and DATA Act requirements, and encourage them to prepare for programmatic performance by setting obtainable goals, creating a budget narrative and preparing detailed project plans.
2. Encourage Standardization
Prime recipients and sub-recipients must establish a standardized reporting system for fund administration to ensure award terms are met and costs properly documented. As the prime recipient, create a system that works best for your staff, and document policies and procedures appropriately. In doing so, you’ll be better equipped to manage sub-recipients consistently.
Federal award identifiers need to be tracked and recorded against activities and costs, so both prime recipients and sub-recipients can identify where money is being spent. With structured and standardized data, sub-recipients will be able to easily report the following to prime recipients:
- Expected outcomes and outputs.
- Sub activities.
- Timelines and deliverables.
3. Implement Grant Management Technology
Regulations will require reporting using machine-readable data. Create a system that allows sub-recipients to diligently measure financial and performance data internally, and roll key information back up to your organization in an easy-to-report format.
To reduce administrative time associated with consortia grants, consider tools like grant management software for sub-recipient management and real-time performance reporting. Grant management software enables prime recipients to:
- Automate data collection and report creation.
- Approve performance and budget items.
- Request resubmission.
- Generate reports to track overall sub-recipient activity.
Is your organization prepared for programmatic performance? Watch our webinar, “Uniform Grant Guidance: How to Connect Performance and Financial Data.“
How is your organization preparing sub-recipients for programmatic performance? Share with us in the comments below.
Image Source: Ginny