Sponsors for MIT research include major federal agencies (notably the National Institutes of Health (NIH) the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Department of Energy (DOE)), many smaller federal agencies, and industrial and international sponsors. The Sponsored Accounting team oversees reporting and collection of more than $650 million per year.
The Sponsored Accounting team works closely with federal agencies and ensures accurate financial reporting on nearly 1,000 active projects per quarter. The team has a high level of technical expertise, applying its deep knowledge about each agency’s specific requirements to this ongoing process. They maintain good working relationships with DLCs and the agencies by ensuring the timely and accurate delivery of reports, knowing that late reports can put future funding at risk. They close out all grants and contracts upon completion.
The Sponsored Accounting team also reports on MIT’s increasing volume of industrial and international research activity—more than 700 active industrial sponsors. While each sponsor has different reporting requirements, the team works with Research Administration Services (RAS) and DLCs to keep all reports in compliance with terms of agreements.
Collecting funds for this volume of research in a timely matter is essential to MIT’s overall financial strength. Regular on-time payments help the Office of Treasury and Planning to manage MIT’s cash flow effectively. Sponsored Accounting has systems in place to directly draw down funds from federal agencies, which reduces payment times considerably. They also do more traditional billing and collecting, and ensure that funds are credited properly.
With constant change and pressing deadlines, the Sponsored Accounting staff is structured into two subgroups for maximum efficiency. One group oversees billings, collections, analytics, and journal voucher approval, and the other group oversees drawings, invoicing, audits, reporting, and closeouts.