Washington State University

Revised 12-09
Sponsored Programs Services

Completing the Effort Certification Report

PDF link


Report the effort of salaried employees on Effort Certification Report forms. Before completing an Effort Certification Report for the first time review the system overview in 40.34.


Sponsored Programs Services sends an Effort Certification Report to the employee's home department at the conclusion of each reporting period.

Each Effort Certification Report is to be reviewed, completed, certified, and returned to Sponsored Programs Services by the return date indicated at the top of the form.

The department may make a copy for informational purposes.

Form Completion

Enter the percent of total effort devoted to each effort classification and sponsored agreement. See completion details below. See sample in the PDF version of 40.35.5. Definitions of effort classifications are provided below.


Enter in sections A, B, and E the percent of total effort devoted to each classification and sponsored agreement. See the classification glossary link above for classification definitions.

Entering Effort

If actual effort shown in Section A or Section B differs from preprinted values, line out incorrect values and enter appropriate percentages. NOTE: Do not white out or otherwise obliterate preprinted information.

In Section A, indicate significant changes in effort only. Changes in Section A that are not significant should not be reported. As a rule-of-thumb, changes of five percent or more are considered significant.

In Section B, indicate all changes in effort. (NOTE: Effort changes reported in Section B require a corresponding payroll adjustment.)

If values are not preprinted for any or all applicable classifications or sponsored agreements in sections A, B or E, write in appropriate percentages.

Sponsored Agreements

When reporting effort devoted to sponsored agreements, include only effort expended during the period covered by the report.

To certify effort devoted to a sponsored agreement not indicated in the Earned Distribution, write the account code and indicate effort percentages in sections B and C. Only accounts in programs 11-14 are listed in Section B. NOTE: Effort changes reported in Section B require a corresponding payroll adjustment.

Cost Sharing

Complete Cost Sharing (Section E) before entering cost sharing effort in Section A.

Indicate by sponsored agreement the percent of effort contributed from nonfederal funds or authorized federal funds. Write in the appropriate account if the account is not preprinted.

NOTE: Cost sharing from fund 143 accounts is not allowed.

Cost sharing or matching from federal funds is not allowed except when authorized by federal statute.

If the number (10) appears adjacent to the account code in Section E, identify the location of cost sharing (on- or off-campus). Enter the distribution under % Effort in Section E. See example in the PDF version of 40.35.13.

When manually adding an agreement which has a possibility for reporting both on- and off-campus effort as stated in the proposal or sponsor's agreement, identify the location of the cost-shared effort (on- or off-campus or split between locations). The location of cost sharing must be identified in order for Sponsored Programs Services to assess the correct facilities and administrative (F&A) rate. See 40.25 for more information about F&A costs.

Transfer the total from Section E to the Cost Sharing classification line in Section A. Refer to 40.36 for additional information about cost sharing.

Calculate Effort Certified Totals

Add all values in sections A and B. This figure must equal 100%.


After reporting effort in sections A and B, make necessary adjustments to the Earned Distribution (Section C).

Effort adjustments which will be reflected on future Effort Certification Reports and which affect current and future Earned Distributions are to be documented as follows:

The following changes require adjustments or additions to the Earned Distribution:

NOTE: When manually adding an account that is active only during the reporting period, include the title code, position number, fund, and active dates in Remarks.

Unless a position is supported by multiple budgets, most changes in effort supported by state-appropriated funds generally do not require an adjustment to the Earned Distribution.

Dual Appointments

When an individual on dual appointment is paid at two rates, the Earned Distribution may not agree with the actual FTE percentages as noted on the current Position Action. Do not adjust the Earned Distribution to make "% Earned" correspond with FTE percentages in such cases. Indicate in Remarks that two (or more) pay bases were used.


One or more brief messages may appear in Section D. The message(s) provide or refer to additional instructions.


Indicate the source accounts for cost shared effort.

Sponsored Programs Services is responsible for collecting data in regards to F&A proposals. To accomplish this, the account which cost sharing is taken from must appear on the Effort Certification Report.

Enter the program, budget, and project account codes under Cost Share From and the corresponding percentage of effort under % Effort in Section G.

The total of the percentages of effort entered in Section G must equal the percentage of effort indicated under Total Cost Sharing in Section E. The department may use more than one allowable source account. Allowable accounts include only nonfederal funds.


Continuing Effort Certification Reports for the employee are listed in this section by effort period.


Each signature must be the individual's actual signature. One individual may not sign for another. A signature stamp may not be used.

Effort Certification (I)

If the employee signs her or his own Effort Certification Report, an administrator's signature is not required in Section I, but is required in Section J. If the person signing the report is not the employee, he or she must have suitable means of verifying 100 percent of the employee's effort for the specified effort period.

Each Effort Certification Report must be signed in Section I.

Administrative Review (J)

Someone holding expenditure authority for each budget shown in Section C and Section E must sign the Effort Certification Report. If the individual who signed Section I does not have expenditure authority for the indicated budgets, an individual with expenditure authority for each budget must sign Section J. (See 70.02 for a description of expenditure authority.)

If the individual who signed as employee in Section I is also the administrator with expenditure authority, another responsible person with expenditure authority must sign in Section J.


If the retroactive adjustment affects a salary and/or budgets that support a salary, initiate an Expense Assignment Action in accordance with 58.03. This process will automatically generate a revised Effort Certification Report.

If the retroactive adjustment only affects cost shared effort, document and recertify the effort as follows:

If effort for the period has already been certified or if no report was printed, request a reprint of the Effort Certification Report.

The revised report must reflect 100 percent of the employee's effort and earnings for the report period.


Each quarter Sponsored Programs Services sends a list of continuing effort reports to the responsible department chair or administrator. If continuing effort reports are not completed and returned within ten days of the notification, Sponsored Programs Services initiates follow-up procedures with the responsible department chair, dean, and vice president.

Notice of continuing effort reports is entered on subsequent Effort Certification Reports in the Continuing Effort Reports (Section H).


The following classification definitions refer to effort reported in sections A, B, and E of the Effort Certification Report.

Departmental Administration

Includes the management and support duties of specified personnel that benefit common activities of the administrative unit. Departmental administration effort is subject to the following limitations and provisions:

Filling-in as acting chair.

Occupying a regular position of assistant director or assistant chair.

Performing departmental or college committee work that benefits federally-sponsored projects.

Effort Certification Reports are not printed for those employees who devote 100 percent of their effort to this category, are supported by accounts in programs 01 through 08, and do not cost share effort.

Effort Certification forms are required to report departmental administration when:

NOTE: Departmental administration is not reflected in the Earned Administration Distribution (Section C) because effort in this category is supported by accounts from other classifications, e.g., instruction, organized research.

Instruction and Departmental Research

This includes teaching, advising, and other curriculum-oriented activities. State-supported research that is NOT separately budgeted and accounted for is also included in this classification, i.e., departmental research.

Organized Research

This classification includes state and federally-funded research that is separately budgeted and has a discrete WSU account coding (program 10).

Cost Sharing

Effort contributed to sponsored agreements (programs 11-14) supported by nonfederal or authorized federal funding.

Extension/Public Service

Those University activities which relate to services and educational programs provided to individuals other than WSU faculty, staff or students.

Other Activities

Includes activities supported by state appropriations that are not included in other classifications.

Sponsored Agreements

Effort devoted to and supported by extramurally-sponsored projects, e.g., state, private, and federal (programs 11-14).

PDF Version
Changing the "Earned Distribution"
New Account and Cost Sharing
Clerical Departmental Administration
Departmental Administration
Cost Sharing (On- and Off-Campus)
Fund 143
Cost Sharing—Added Account