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Associate Director, Grant and Contract Financial Administration

Company: Trustees of University of Pennsylvania
Location: Franklin
Posted on: November 22, 2021

Job Description:

University Overview

The University of Pennsylvania, the largest private employer in Philadelphia, is a world-renowned leader in education, research, and innovation. This historic, Ivy League school consistently ranks among the top 10 universities in the annual U.S. News & World Report survey. Penn has 12 highly-regarded schools that provide opportunities for undergraduate, graduate and continuing education, all influenced by Penn's distinctive interdisciplinary approach to scholarship and learning. As an employer Penn has been ranked nationally on many occasions with the most recent award from Forbes who named Penn one of America's Best Employers By State in 2021.

Penn offers a unique working environment within the city of Philadelphia. The University is situated on a beautiful urban campus, with easy access to a range of educational, cultural, and recreational activities. With its historical significance and landmarks, lively cultural offerings, and wide variety of atmospheres, Philadelphia is the perfect place to call home for work and play.

The University offers a competitive benefits package that includes excellent healthcare and tuition benefits for employees and their families, generous retirement benefits, a wide variety of professional development opportunities, supportive work and family benefits, a wealth of health and wellness programs and resources, and much more.

COVID-19 vaccination is a requirement for all positions at the University of Pennsylvania. New hires are expected to be fully vaccinated before beginning work at the University. For more information about Penn's vaccine requirements and the use of Penn Open Pass, visit the Penn COVID-19 Response website for the latest information.

Posted Job Title
Associate Director, Grant and Contract Financial Administration - Office of Research Services - Division of Finance

Job Profile Title
Associate Director D

Job Description Summary
The Office of Research Services post award group engages with key stakeholders, research administrators, internal and external partners, sponsors, and regulatory agencies throughout the post award lifespan of a sponsored project. The Associate Director plays a vital role in the success of research administration at Penn. The Associate Director will be responsible for day to day management of a team of Grant and Contract Financial Administrators, ensuring post award financial administration for a portfolio of approximately $250m in sponsored project funds; and ensuring compliance with federal, city, and state regulatory requirements, as well as with sponsor and University policies and procedures. The Associate Director will serve as an Authorized Organizational Representative under delegation from the Trustees for submission and sign-off of post award financial information to federal and other research sponsors.

The Associate Director will work closely with the Office of Research Services (ORS) staff and research departments in the schools and centers to ensure compliance with sponsor and university invoicing, financial reporting, and other requirements. The Associate director will collaborate with our internal partners to identify ways to improve communication, workflows and efficiencies, ensure post award controls and processes are operating appropriately and provide support and guidance on post award policies and procedures. As part of the ORS team, the Associate Director will also be responsible developing, delivering, and facilitating University-wide sponsored projects training for research administrators and post award team members. He/she will also provide technical support for various post award systems and processes and work with internal partners and departments and external auditors on sponsored project compliance monitoring and audits.

In the Division of Finance, we recognize diversity and inclusion is paramount to a positive and thriving work environment; it is a business imperative. We are committed to actively fostering diversity, inclusion, and cultural competency throughout our operational efforts in the Division of Finance. This role will be critical in supporting those efforts and demonstrating behaviors and competencies that reflect Penn's values.

We take pride in the myriad ways that diversity enriches our curriculum, and the cultural and social life of our campus. Penn's commitment to achieving eminence through diversity is ultimately a commitment to creating a more vibrant university so that our graduates will be both stimulated and empowered to shape a better world.

Job Description

Directly supervise 3-5 assigned Grant and Contract Administrators. Supervisory responsibilities include, but are not limited to: recruitment, performance management, paid time off, and day to day management and oversight of supervises' portfolios. Ensure accuracy of supervises' invoices, accounts receivables, and financial reporting to federal and non-federal sponsoring agencies.

Serve as Penn's Official Authorized Financial Officer on matters related to financial management of sponsored project awards including certifying financial reporting, award relinquishment, trainee terminations, budget changes and prior approval requests; provide advanced technical expertise to internal and external partners and collaborators on complex reporting and compliance issues; liaise with sponsors on complex post-award issues.

Provide support and guidance to Assistant & Associate Director colleagues on complex issues including implementation of new procedures to address regulatory changes, allowability of costs, revenue, expense and accounts receivables monitoring; cost transfers, financial disputes, process workflows, and system efficiencies.

Hold regular meetings with business administrators and collaborate with other internal University partners to ensure service needs are met; serve as subject matter expert on financial award management issues including determination of allowability, allocability, and reasonableness of costs on sponsored project awards .

Manage and oversee post-award special projects; provide advanced post-award technical support for various BEN and GMS processes including GL to GMS interfaces, workflows, and invoice output; Assist in developing new and modifying existing tools and procedures for post award research compliance monitoring

Develop, manage and deliver university-wide instructor-led and web based sponsored projects training course offerings; ensure training materials and content are maintained and consistent with federal, city, state and sponsor compliance requirements

Develop, maintain and enforce Penn internal financial policies/procedures; serve as expert on Penn and Federal agency financial management policies on grants and contracts

Perform additional duties as assigned


A Bachelor's degree and 5 years to 7 years of experience or equivalent combination of education and experience in post award research administration are required.

Strong verbal and written communication skills and ability to work collaboratively in a deadline-driven environment. Knowledge of University financial and sponsored program policies and systems, including BEN Financials, GMS, Pennera, Effort reporting, Data Warehouse, Workday, MS Office, NSF Fastlane/ and NIH Commons strongly preferred. Working knowledge of Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Uniform Guidance (UG) regulations and experience working with federal sponsors preferred. Managerial experience preferred.

Strong financial, analytical, and modeling skills. Experience with the University of Pennsylvania financial systems preferred. Advanced user skills with Excel and other Microsoft programs and computer systems. Excellent interpersonal, communication and presentation skills. Demonstrated ability to be detail-oriented and accurate. Able to handle multiple tasks simultaneously. Demonstrated organizational and prioritization skills, along with the ability to work within tight and often conflicting deadlines. Must be flexible, show effective judgement, discretion and have the ability to handle confidential financial matters.

Work effectively in a highly matrixed and decentralized environment with the ability to navigate through ambiguity and demonstrate appreciation and support for diversity, inclusion and belonging in a constantly evolving academic/higher education environment.

Working Conditions:

Office, Library, computer room

Physical Effort:

Typing, sitting at a desk or table

Job Location - City, State
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Department / School
Division of Finance

Pay Range
$59,703.00 - $113,435.00

Affirmative Action Statement
Penn adheres to a policy that prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, creed, national or ethnic origin, citizenship status, age, disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected class.

Special Requirements
Background check required after a conditional job offer is made. Consideration of the background check will be tailored to the requirements of the job.

University Benefits

  • Health, Life, and Flexible Spending Accounts: Penn offers comprehensive medical, prescription, behavioral health, dental, vision, and life insurance benefits to protect you and your family's health and welfare. You can also use flexible spending accounts to pay for eligible health care and dependent care expenses with pre-tax dollars.
  • Tuition: Take advantage of Penn's exceptional tuition benefits. You, your spouse..... click apply for full job details

Keywords: Trustees of University of Pennsylvania, Lincoln , Associate Director, Grant and Contract Financial Administration , Executive , Franklin, Nebraska

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