1315 PR.04 Effort Reporting

Revision Date: 
September 6, 2018


1.     Effort Reporting Overview

2.     Frequency of Effort Reporting

3.     Effort Certification Reviewer Training

4.     Accessing Effort Certification Statements in Workday

5.     Completing the Certification Process

6.     Receiving Notifications During the Certification Cycle

7.     Escalation Process

8.     Effort Report Template

9.     Effort Reporting Requirements for an Exiting PI/Faculty Member

10.   Effort Reporting Requirements for PI/Faculty Member Post-Departure

11.   Roles & Responsibilities

Effort reporting is the process the University utilizes to document effort expended on sponsored projects during each effort reporting period.  The Effort Certification Statement (ECS) is the mechanism through which effort devoted to sponsored projects, teaching, clinical practice, and other activities, expressed as a percentage of total University effort is documented.

Note:  Certification for certain personnel that are paid weekly, such as temporary employees and service and maintenance staff, is accomplished through signature verification by the appropriate individual within the certification block on Form 3502 FR.01 Temporary Employee Payment Request.  Certification for undergraduate students is accomplished through the eTimesheet system by the supervisor of the student certifying electronically to the hours worked.

Exceptions to completing an ECS apply to:

  • Graduate Students supported 100% by a training grant or partially supported by a training grant and university funds.
  • Yale personnel who are 100% devoted to an Interpersonnel Agency Agreement (IPA) with a federal agency.

The effort reporting periods (and the month in which the ECS is initiated) for individuals charged to sponsored awards are illustrated in the Table below.  It should be noted that shortly after the close of an effort reporting period, ECSs are initiated by the Office of Sponsored Projects’ (OSP) Effort Certification Manager (ECM).

Effort Period

Covered Individuals

Spring and Fall Academic Terms (January & June)

Graduate students

Summer (September)

Graduate students and 9-month Faculty summer compensation

Semiannual (January & July)

Professionals, Faculty and Staff

To be better informed of effort reporting periods and processes, the ECM posts an Effort Reporting Calendar on the Effort Reporting website.  This calendar informs the community of current and subsequent effort schedules.   

Note:  It is the responsibility of the ECM to monitor the effort reporting process in Workday.  Such monitoring includes but is not limited to the rate of completion.  Effort reports are expected to be certified within 60 calendar days from the date of the availability notification.

Effort Certification Reviewer (ECR) assignment in Workday is managed by the ECR’s supervisor.  In order to participate in the effort certification process, the ECR must first review the following training guides and complete the required training courses:

Workday can be accessed via the Workday at Yale website or from the It’s Your Yale website.  If logging into Workday from an off-campus location, Multifactor Authentication is required.  Information about Multifactor Authentication is located at Yale’s ITS website.

Certifiers and administrators responsible for the successful completion of ECSs can locate ECSs by accessing their Workday Inbox.  The Workday Inbox can be accessed by clicking your name in the upper right corner of the Workday screen or from the Inbox worklet on the Workday homepage.

The actions below support the effort reporting process and help ensure the timely and accurate completion of ECSs. 

Action 1:  Communicate Timelines and Expectations

Prior to the ECR’s administrative review activities, ECRs should consider establishing timelines and setting expectations according to policy and procedure within the department to ensure the effort certification process is completed in a timely fashion.  At the initiation of an effort reporting period, ECRs will need to inform the certifiers that an ECS will be available for their certification.  A sample email is provided in the attached Appendix.  This communication may assist in the identification of any individuals who are traveling or have left the University. 

Action 2:  Faculty that Have Left the University

ECRs must ensure effort report templates for faculty that left Yale during the effort reporting period are completed and in accordance with the Effort Reporting Requirements for an Exiting PI/Faculty Member process described below.

If a PI/faculty member left Yale prior to completing an effort report template, the ECR should follow the Effort Reporting Requirements for PI/Faculty Member Post-Departure process described below.

Action 3:  Administrative Review

ECRs should conduct the administrative review of ECSs prior to faculty financial statement review meetings.  At the meeting the ECR and faculty member can discuss the “effort portfolio” for the faculty member and staff.  

Administrative review routing is dictated by the grant costing information identified on the ECS.  It is possible that an ECS may have multiple ECRs.  In such cases, the ECS will appear in the Workday Inbox of each ECR.  The first ECR to complete the administrative review process will trigger Workday to automatically route the ECS to the certifier(s) even though the remaining ECRs may not have had the opportunity to view the ECS.  Therefore, it is highly recommended that the administrative review of ECSs is conducted by an ECR in the covered individual’s home cost center.  The ECR in the covered individual’s home cost center should have a complete understanding of the employee’s full payroll costing allocation.

If, however, there is no grant costing within the covered individual’s home cost center, the home cost center is not included and does not perform an administrative review.  In this situation, administrative review should then be performed by the ECR assigned to the grant with the largest percentage of effort.  The ECR would communicate with any remaining assigned ECRs in order to complete the review process.

To determine other ECR(s) associated with an ECS, utilize the Workday report titled, “Effort Certification Status Report – Yale.”  This report assists in the identification of other ECRs in the administrative review route.

When an ECR runs “Effort Certification Status Report – Yale” and includes all grant hierarchy assignments in the Organization report prompt, the results will include a complete list of all ECSs assigned to the ECR for review.  It is recommended that ECRs use this report when reviewing ECSs and filter the results by the employee’s home cost center to review this population first.  “Effort Certification Status Report – Yale” can also be utilized to monitor certification progress and view details of ECSs reviewed by other assigned reviewers.

For assistance, an Effort Certification Reporting quick guide is located at the Workday@Yale Training website.

Action 4:  Payroll Changes

ECRs should discuss with the certifier any potential payroll changes early in the process and prior to certification.  Identified changes should already be made and incorporated in the ECS once the certifier has received the ECS to certify.

If a certifier identifies a necessary change during the certification process, the certifier should “Send Back” the ECS.  The ECS will be sent back to the ECR that completed the administrative review.  If the ECR who performed the administrative review is:

  • assigned to the certifier that sent the ECS back, the ECR will make the requested change and submit the administratively reviewed ECS.
  • not assigned to the certifier that sent the ECS back, the ECR should reassign the ECS to the ECR assigned to the certifier requesting the change.  Once reassignment to the appropriate ECR is completed, the ECR will make the requested change and submit the administratively reviewed ECS. 

Action 5:  Certification

Faculty must certify their own ECSs.  All “Grant” Principal Investigators certify the ECSs of non-faculty and students. 

Certifiers should verify, prior to reviewing and certifying an ECS, the effort commitment made to the sponsor by reviewing the proposal and/or progress reports, as well as the award document.  Questions regarding allowable reductions in committed effort should be directed to OSP’s Award/Contract Manager, as appropriate.  

ECRs should monitor ECS completion on a weekly basis and provide assistance to certifiers. 

Action 6:  Post Review

Post Review is only required when a change is made to a faculty ECS.  In such situations, the ECR(s) will receive the ECS after certification in order to review and submit.   The ECR will not be able to make any additional changes to the certified ECS.  If the ECR identifies an issue related to a certified ECS, the ECR needs to use the “Send Back” option on the ECS which will send the ECS back to the certifier.

Once this Post Review step is completed, a “Create Payroll Accounting Adjustments for Effort Certification” task will route to all the Cost Center Payroll Accounting Adjustment Specialists assigned to the employee’s home cost center.

Action 7:  Payroll Accounting Adjustments for Certified ECSs

A certified ECS with changes will automatically initiate a “Create Payroll Accounting Adjustments (PAA) for Effort Certification” task.  The “Create Payroll Accounting Adjustments for Effort Certification” task will route to the Cost Center Payroll Accounting Adjustment Specialist(s) assigned to the employee’s home cost center.  The PAA is prepopulated with the journal lines impacted by the effort change made in the ECS.  The journal lines should not be changed on the PAA.  The Cost Center Payroll Accounting Adjustment Specialist will need to upload supporting documentation and complete the cost transfer questionnaire, as necessary.

Messages regarding the effort reporting cycle are delivered to ECR “Workday Notifications”.  To access these Notifications, click on your name in the upper right-hand corner of the Workday screen.

The following matrix describes the escalation process for those ECSs that have not been certified by the certification deadline.

Day 70 after initiation
(10 days overdue)

Day 90 after initiation
(30 days overdue)

Day 120 after initiation
(60 days overdue)

ECM escalates a list of all outstanding ECSs to the Lead Administrator and Operations Manager assigned in Workday to the home cost center of each employee with a pending action item.

ECM escalates a list of all outstanding ECSs to the Senior Director assigned in Workday to the home cost center of each employee with a pending action item, with a request for resolution and response.

ECM escalates the list of outstanding ECSs to the OSP Executive Director who will contact cost centers informing them to remove payroll expenses related to the uncertified ECSs.

Under certain situations, an individual may have devoted some percent of committed effort to a Yale sponsored project, but Workday did not generate an ECS.  Examples of such situations are described below:

  • Covered individual is on the Executive (Confidential) Payroll;
  • Covered individual is on a sabbatical leave for the entire effort period and is continuing his/her commitment to the sponsored project;
  • Individual is paid 100% by a non-Yale source and devoting effort to Yale sponsored awards (i.e., Howard Hughes Medical Institute or the Veterans Affairs Connecticut Healthcare System); and
  • Covered individual plans to leave Yale prior to the close of an effort reporting period.

If one of the above situations occurs and an ECS is not generated, it is the responsibility of the operations manager or lead administrator to complete Form 1315 FR.01 Effort Report, ensure that it is appropriately certified, and submit Form 1315 FR.01 Effort Report according to the instructions on the form.

Prior to a PI’s or faculty member’s permanent departure from Yale, s/he is required to complete the requisite effort reports for him/herself and those for which they are directly responsible.

If the PI is transferring awards to another institution, effort reports should be submitted prior to Yale’s relinquishment or transfer of the award.

The steps below describe how to document effort when the certifier is leaving Yale during an effort reporting period and prior to a Workday generated ECS.  The completion of these steps does not replace certification in the system of record (Workday), but rather serves as supporting documentation for the certification of the Workday generated ECS.  

1.  ECR reviews the PI’s portfolio of awards and identifies effort commitments of personnel indicated in the proposal to the associated sponsored project accounts (including cost sharing).

2.  ECR ensures all individuals are charged appropriately to the awards.

3.  ECR confirms the distribution of salary of all individuals charged to the account(s) indicated in the costing allocation or via financial review.  ECR adjusts any labor that may have gone to suspense or to an incorrect account. 

4.  ECR uses Form 1315 FR.01 Effort Report to create an effort report for each individual identified, including the PI. 

5.  The appropriate individual (covered individual, PI, or designee) must sign the Effort Report template in accordance with Policy 1315 Effort Reporting: Certifying Effort on Sponsored Projects.

6.  When ECSs are initiated in Workday, if the payroll percentages do not match the actual effort certified by the PI (or designee) on the effort report template, ECR corrects the ECS accordingly.   

7.  ECR attaches the signed effort report and any supporting documentation to the ECS during the administrative review process. 

8.  ECR emails the signed effort report to effort.reports@yale.edu and requests the ECM to reassign the Effort Certification Reviewer (ECR) as certifier in order to complete the certification process.  This is permissible due to the existence of the attached signed effort report supporting the Workday certification process.

ECRs must ensure effort report templates for faculty that left Yale during the effort reporting period are complete and in accordance with Effort Reporting Requirements for an Exiting PI/Faculty Member process described above.

If the process was not followed, the ECR should contact the departed faculty member to collect a signed effort report template for him/herself and staff/students and continue to follow the established process.  If the ECR is unable to collect a signed effort report template, the ECR should communicate this matter with their Operations Manager or Lead Administrator for resolution.

Effort Certification Manager (ECM)

  • Determines which reporting periods need to be initiated and when initiation will occur;
  • Generates ECSs for all departments;
  • Notifies ECRs via e-mail when ECSs are ready for the certification process;
  • Monitors overall completion for the University;
  • Performs review to ensure data integrity; and
  • Supports the certification process.

Effort Certification Reviewer (ECR)

  • Understands Yale’s policies/procedures and has completed related required training;
  • Facilitates a timely and efficient process for those individuals required to certify effort;
  • Reviews ECSs and makes appropriate adjustments both prior to and post certification;
  • Understands the sponsored accounts included on the ECSs assigned to them for review, including but not limited to proposal budgets, effort commitments, the terms and conditions of the sponsored award as well as sponsor handbooks, policies, and guidance;
  • Provides assistance to faculty with the use of Workday and the effort certification process;
  • Captures cost sharing properly; and
  • Ensures that ECSs are reviewed and properly escalated for timely certification in accordance with the due dates established by the University.

Effort Certification Analyst (ECA)

  • Understands and has a working knowledge of Yale’s policies/procedures including but not limited to effort commitments, effort reporting, and cost transfers;
  • Responds to department personnel questions regarding effort reporting policies and procedures; and
  • Monitors the completion of Effort Certification Statements (ECS), ensuring proper review, and escalates ECS issues in a timely manner so that certification is completed in accordance with the due dates established by the University.


  • Is aware of his/her level of committed effort to sponsored projects;
  • Ensures that changes to an ECS are communicated to the ECR;
  • Ensures that any effort changes requiring sponsor prior approval to committed effort are appropriately communicated to the OSP Award Manager;
  • Notes voluntary uncommitted cost sharing in the ECS comments field;
  • Reviews the ECS to ensure the percentages correctly represent the covered individual’s effort based on salary charged to the award and the commitments made to the sponsor;
  • Communicates any significant changes in level of sponsored projects effort to his/her Grant Manager;
  • Has the necessary knowledge and understanding of the committed effort expectations for those individuals assigned to his/her projects; and
  • Reviews and certifies ECSs.


Sample Email to Certifiers – Announcing Effort Certification Cycle

To:  Department Certifiers

From:  Department Business Office

Subject:  Effort Reporting Period is Open in Workday

On [insert initiation date] the effort reporting period was initiated and Effort Certification Statements (ECS) will be available for your certification.

Certifying effort is a condition of receiving sponsored awards.  The University must assure sponsors that the salary charged to the sponsored award is at a minimum commensurate with the effort devoted.  In addition, the University must assure sponsors that the commitment indicated (including mandatory and voluntary committed cost sharing) in the proposal and subsequent award is met in accordance with the sponsor’s terms and conditions.  The University provides this assurance by requiring the completion of periodic ECS for each individual whose salary is charged to one or more sponsored projects and/or cost sharing accounts during the effort reporting period.  Yale Policy 1315 Effort Reporting: Certifying Effort on Sponsored Projects.

The effort period covering [insert dates] is now open.  Certification is due [insert date].                

It is recommended that you meet with your business office support contact to review the ECS assigned to you for certification.

An additional resource, found at the Workday@Yale Training website, is available to walk you through the certification process in Workday.

If you are accessing Workday while off-campus; please note that a Virtual Private Network (VPN) connection is required to log into Workday.  All technical questions related to establishing a VPN connection should be directed to the ITS Helpdesk at helpdesk@yale.edu or 203-432-9000.