The Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) Kuali Implementation group project has been selected to receive the fall 2020 Job Well Done Award.
Kuali at UMBC is a cloud based tool used to help administer all aspects of research administration. It is a platform developed by and improved through the input from Universities. The UMBC project initiated in 2012 when Dean Drake and Joe Kirby attended a Kuali Days conference in Atlanta as part of an assessment of Electronic Research Administration tools. Once the decision was made, our initial outreach and awareness began in September 2015 with phase one beginning in spring 2016. The full implementation is nearly complete. The project team will continue to implement new modules and enhancements as part of the Kuali package offering.
The OSP Implementation phase came in under budget and within schedule. The group collaborated with other University System of Maryland (USM) institutions on the implementation. Based on this collaboration, UMBC saved $40,000 a year on software licensing and USM had a combined savings of $230,000 a year. These amounts do not even come close to the intrinsic savings experienced by being on the same system as our sister USM campuses. Nearly every USM institution has, or is in the process of, implementing Kuali.
This was a truly multi-unit project. While OVPR/OSP led the project, multiple units across all of the colleges and several central units were involved. The project team members included, Stan Jackson, Chanell Rome, Jamie Cole, Daniele Franz, Jessica Holte, Cameron McAdams, Michal Mielech, Rebecca O’Brien, Laura Taylor, Michael Walsh, Deborah Waters, Gina Fischer, Margo Young, Bobbie Stocks, Rachel Brubaker, Stacy Long, Aimee Howell, Deb Geare, Lee Blaney, Pat Slabach, Lance Rand, Anthony Finneran, Joe Kirby, David Lucadamo, and Joanna Napoli.
The implementation team members worked extended hours in the evenings and weekends to implement OSP Kuali. Countless outreach meetings were conducted prior and during implementation spanning over two years. A few other important data points include, routing configurations for 375 UMBC units were set up and legacy data including 627 proposals, 580 awards and 80 sub-recipient relationships entered.
Besides conducting outreach, training was a key component of the project that included self-paced, group, as well as one-on-one in person trainings. A Kuali web page was created with numerous resources including quick reference cards, videos, FAQ’s, Blackboard, and multiple demonstrations. Over 26,000 training records are now housed in Kuali. Nearly 300 in-person Kuali specific trainings have been provided by OSP.
Kuali has transformed the Office of the Vice President for Research’s (OVPR) ability to better service our internal and external customers. The ability to manage all aspects of our sponsored programs has been dramatically improved. Examples of the benefits include: electronic routing of proposals cutting down processing time; ability to capture Co-I’s and multiple unit involvement; cloud based electronic approval process; single sign-on for easy access; automated feeds from PeopleSoft and Training programs limits data entry; ability to track by the individual key research training requirements; a shared proposal development workspace enabling faculty and business staff to work more effectively on proposal development; system to system proposal submission capability allowing for seamless submission process to major federal funding agencies; automatic generation of some sponsor forms and data; integrated Subaward system; dramatic improvements in data reporting both in timing and validation; and review update or elimination of about 120 forms procedures and processes as a result of the implementation process. Kuali provides UMBC with the infrastructure necessary to accomplish its strategic goal 3.1 under “Collective Impact in Research, Scholarship, and Creative Achievement”.
In the future this software will enhance collaboration between faculty from multiple USM institutions, including UMBC. It was already a factor with our first dual faculty appointee between UMBC and UMB.
UMBC’s implementation is unique from the other USM campuses, as we are implementing not only the pre-award modules, but eventually, we are expecting Kuali to house all OVPR related services and documents, allowing for a one stop shop for UMBC faculty and business staff to see their entire research portfolio from Proposals, Awards, Subawards to Compliance (COI, IACUC, IRB, EC) to technology development.
The Department of Human Resources would like to congratulate the group on receiving this honor. The members of the group will receive a celebratory lunch at the Skylight Lounge (postponed until a later date), a certificate, and an invitation to the annual Service Awards Ceremony. In addition, the group project will be added to the Job Well Done Award plaque located in the Department of Human Resources.