Sr. Grant & Contract Administrator

Chicago, Illinois
26 Aug 2020
End of advertisement period
26 Oct 2020
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Please make sure to read the job posting in its entirety as it reflects both the University roles and responsibilities, followed by the specific description.

2010009 BSD - Center for Translational Data Science

About the Unit
The Center for Translational Data Science at the University of Chicago is a research center pioneering the discipline of translational data science to advance biology, medicine, and environmental research.  We architect ecosystems of large-scale commons of research data, computing resources, applications, tools, and services for the broader research community to use data at scale to pursue scientific inquiry and accelerate discovery.  These growing data commons offer petabytes of rich research data to scientists across the world. This at-will position is wholly or partially funded by contractual grant funding which is renewed under provisions set by the grantor of the contract.  Employment will be contingent upon the continued receipt of these grant funds and satisfactory job performance.

Job Family

Financial Management
Responsible for accounting, budgets and financial controls, payroll, purchasing, risk management, and treasury for the University. Sets financial strategy that impacts University functions such as grant awards, clinical research, and investments of capital.

Career Track and Job Level

Grant & Contract Administration
Coordinates pre-award and/or post-award activities relating to grant and contract proposals/funding within a department or unit. Pre-award activities may include researching funding opportunities, preparing applications, and editing administrative sections of proposals. Post-award activities include monthly expenditure review, payment processing, salary allocations, and providing account projections.

P2: Requires knowledge and experience in own discipline; still acquiring higher-level knowledge and skills. Builds knowledge of the organization, processes and customers. Solves a range of straightforward problems. Analyzes possible solutions using standard procedures. Receives a moderate level of guidance and direction. 

Role Impact

Individual Contributor

The job provides professional support for pre-award and/or post-award activities relating to grant and contract proposals and funding within a department or unit. Pre-award activities include research, preparing applications, and editing proposals. Post-award activities include compliance monitoring, payment processing, and salary allocations. Performs work with moderate guidance and utilizes knowledge of University and business drivers.

1) Seeks new avenues for funding and grant opportunities and ensures that notices of relevant opportunities are brought to faculty attention. Works with sponsors to draft proposal budgets in accordance with University needs, with a moderate level of guidance and direction., 2) Reviews all applications against University guidelines, in addition to drafting progress reports, non-competing applications, amendments, and budgeting. Responsible for all data entry and preparation of grant reports and trend analysis., 3) Handles straightforward post-award activities including account creations, regulatory and compliance monitoring, salary allocations, effort reporting, grant projections, cost allocations, cost center charges, equipment inventory, invoice preparation, grant closing process, and account closing., 4) Prepares summaries of grants and effort allocations for Principal Investigators, meets with them and responds to their questions. Coordinates with other departments/units/divisions regarding multi investigator grants. Serves as department contact for annual audits and agency site visits., 5) Performs other related work as needed.

Unit-specific Responsibilities 

1) Develop, review, and iterate on proposal budgets with faculty and other departmental stakeholders.

2) Administer and manage university-specific and contract-specific financial management and reporting requirements, working with management and other stakeholders to create, review, and improve processes as needed.

3) Liaise between all internal and external groups involved to manage awards and ensure processes are followed.  

4) Partner with other pre- and post-award administrators within and outside of the department, including with University Research Administration for timely and accurate submission of award documents including, but not limited to, progress reports, no-cost extension requests, and other award modifications.

5) Represent the Center as primary point of contact with sponsor for grant, contract, and other award management activities while routing communications centrally when appropriate.

6) Stay abreast of regulations and guidelines of various awarding agencies.

7) Analyze and tracks key metrics and business drivers, such as funding source categories, capital expenditures, small business expenditures, grant submissions and awards, indirect cost recovery, etc.

8) Ensure compliance of all award documents and practices align with Federal, agency, and University guidelines.

9) Act as a resource by providing training and mentorship for other financial staff members and, where relevant, other departmental staff.

10) Weekend/Evening hours are on need base.

Unit-preferred Competencies

1) Knowledge of general accounting standards and auditing. 

2) Strong financial and analytic skills

3) Attention to detail.

4) Ability to independently research issues, develop and analyze alternative solutions, and recommend solutions to problems.

5) Demonstrated initiative in improving processes and enhancing systems.

6) Ability to exercise sound judgment, discretion, and tact.

7) Knowledge of federal and non-federal regulations for grant management.

8) Ability to independently complete projects on time and accurately with minimal supervision.

9) Ability to build and maintain relationships with individuals externally and internally.

10) Excellent oral and written communication skills.

11) Proficiency in Microsoft Office, G Suite, Box, or other spreadsheet and document sharing softwares.

Education, Experience, and Certifications
Minimum requirements include a college or university degree in related field.
Minimum requirements include knowledge and skills developed through 2-5 years of work experience in a related job discipline.

Preferred Qualifications


1) Experience with University of Chicago or similar grant and financial systems. 

2) Minimum of 3 years direct experience in a research program administration role with increasing responsibility.

3) Experience managing awards across the entire award lifecycle.

4) Advanced experience with NIH and NSF grant compliance.

5) Experience working with management to recommend and facilitate procedural changes when necessary to meet sponsor guidelines.

6) Experience in or ability to learn quickly expense types associated with a research computing group.

Required Documents

1) Resume

NOTE: When applying, all required documents MUST be uploaded under the Resume/CV section of the application 

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