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A cover letter is required for consideration for this position and should be attached as the first page of your resume. The cover letter should address your specific interest in the position and outline skills and experience that directly relate to this position.

Job Summary

About the Life Sciences Institute:

The Life Sciences Institute (LSI) is a multi-disciplinary research institute at the University of Michigan, strategically located as a bridge between the medical campus and the central-campus schools and colleges. Our mission is to advance the understanding of the fundamental processes of life, and to pioneer new ideas to improve human health.

The LSI’s world-class faculty members hold joint appointments at the LSI, where their labs are located, and a variety of schools and colleges across the university. They bring broad and diverse expertise — ranging from cell biology to medicine, from chemistry to structural biology. The institute’s philosophy is to provide our faculty and their teams with superior scientific tools and administrative support, allowing them to spend more time focused on what really matters — their research.

The institute’s administrative staff supports all aspects of unit operations including facilities, IT, human resources, finance, research administration, academic programs, communications and development. 

In addition to faculty labs, the LSI houses several core technology labs that support the research enterprise of the entire university, including a high-throughput screening center (Center for Chemical Genomics), a comprehensive cloning and macromolecular X-ray crystallography facility (Center for Structural Biology), and a state-of-the-art cryo-electron microscopy facility. The LSI also plays a key role in administering campus-wide programs like the U-M Program in Chemical Biology, Center for the Discovery of New Medicines and Michigan Life Sciences Fellows.

The LSI is committed to the principle that fostering diversity, equity and inclusion within the institute — and in the next generation of scientific leaders — is inseparable from our commitment to scientific excellence and achievement.

The Research Process Coordinator is a member of the LSI Research Administrative (RA) team, one of several administrative units who all facilitate research through exceptional service to LSI faculty, fellows, staff, and students.

The successful candidate is an enthusiastic and dynamic individual who demonstrates a high proficiency in pre-and post-award research administration. Reporting to the LSI Director of Research Administration, this role works independently and as part of the LSI RA team. The Research Process Coordinator is responsible for managing a portfolio of sponsored and non-sponsored funds for a group of mainly senior faculty members, and providing both pre- and post-award guidance and support to other team members.  The successful candidate will have experience with providing expert research administration guidance to faculty, lab staff, students and postdoctoral fellows, including making real-time decisions and understanding when to request additional assistance and direction from leadership.


Large Portfolio with Senior Faculty working under minimal supervision


• Coordinate the pre-award process for assigned faculty and lab members, including obtaining details on planned submissions for coordinated calendaring of activities.
• Work with a variety of research funding sponsors including: NIH, NSF, DOD, DOE, state, foundations, other non-profits and industry.
• Advise LSI researchers on all aspects of the proposal submission process including internal and external deadlines, guidance on regulations, budgetary requirements or   restrictions, agency requirements, internal policies and procedures.
• Provide frontline assistance to faculty, lab members, graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and additional researchers (collectively “LSI researchers”) with sponsored research proposal submissions.
• Review RFA to ensure specific knowledge of details for sponsor requirements.
• Assemble the proposal application (PAF) via eRPM and complete all administrative sections.
• Draft and finalize grant budgets based on direct communication with the LSI researcher.
• Work closely with other campus partners, as applicable, involved in a particular proposal including coordination of budget, preparation of administrative sections, effort availability, signatures, etc.
• Create partnership and open communication with the Office of Research and Sponsored Projects (ORSP) to obtain expert and timely responses on pre-award items.
• Assist team members with any questions or other support for proposal submissions.
• Ensure timely processing of all proposals, handling any and all issues necessary for submission.
• Gather and create documents for Just-In Time requests from sponsors.

Unfunded Agreements

• Oversee Unfunded Agreement Types (UFAs) for all assigned faculty/lab needs including Materials Transfer Agreements, Confidentiality Agreements, and Data Use Agreements.
• Process UFAs for electronic handling by appropriate campus unit (Office of Technology Transfer (OTT) or ORSP).
• Monitor status of UFA review with assigned OTT or ORSP.
• Follow up with LSI researcher on any necessary items based on OTT or ORSP review.
• Escalate significant delays in the process as applicable to LSI leadership.

Assigned Portfolio of PIs, various sponsors

• Process award notices and review proposal budgets and contact PI with questions, request appointment changes, determine re-budget needs.
• Process journals to distribute funding for any needed subaccounts.
• Initiate subcontract process and work with subcontract sites on budgets, work with Office of Contract Administration to issue subawards.
• Reconcile, review and forecast sponsored project grants for assigned PIs on a monthly basis.
• Review and process FSR and A21 reports, or other required sponsored reports.
• Investigate and resolve discrepancies; complete journal entries as needed.
• Ensure Uniform Guidance (formerly A-21) reports are accurate and resolve any issues with Sponsored Programs before submitting for final signature.
• Prepare monthly budget reports.
• Perform budgeting analysis and financial reporting.
• Monitor subrecipients for spending pace and accuracy in use of funding.
• Review monthly reports and personnel effort with faculty.
• Perform DBE change requests and ensure completion of such changes.
• Assist PIs with prior approval requirements including no cost extensions, rebudgeting, change in scope, carryforward approvals, etc.
• Assist faculty with yearly progress reporting requirements, i.e., Research Performance Progress Reports.
• Perform adhoc projection reports.
• Conduct pre-audit of travel and PCard expenses.

Educational Outreach/Mentoring

• Provide mentoring to other team members, as needed.
• Engage in continuous improvement efforts.
• Participate in and/or develop education outreach and training forums to the LSI community related to research administration.

Required Qualifications*

• Bachelor’s degree in a related field or equivalent combination of education, certification, and experience
• Minimum of 5 years progressively more responsible experience with pre- and post-award administration of grants and contracts
• Experience with sponsor systems such as NIH Commons, NSF Fastlane and
• Excellent computer skills and proficiency in Microsoft Office applications (Windows, Excel, Access)
• Experience working with complex financial and administrative information systems
• Experience with electronic proposal submission systems
• Ability to gather, interpret, and analyze resource data in order to make recommendations
• Ability to set priorities, handle multiple assignments and deadlines, while operating in a flexible and professional manner
• High degree of initiative and resourcefulness
• Exceptional attention to detail while delivering the highest level of customer service
• Ability to work independently and as part of a collaborative team.
• Ability to work in open, collaborative space and ability to work in a fast-paced environment and effectively manage uncertainty
• Excellent written, oral, and interpersonal communication skills

Section 5: Desired Qualifications (Optional)

• Experience with electronic proposal submission systems, particularly eResearch, M-Reports and Business Objects
• Demonstrated mentorship and presentation skills
• Service on unit and/or campus committees or other relevant leadership roles
• Knowledge of U-M policies and procedures

Background Screening

The University of Michigan conducts background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer and may use a third party administrator to conduct background checks. Background checks will be performed in compliance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act.

Application Deadline

Job openings are posted for a minimum of seven calendar days. This job may be removed from posting boards and filled anytime after the minimum posting period has ended.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.