Home | Process | Submit and Negotiate | Review proposal

Responsibility: ORSPA-PNT
Prepared by: PNT
Work Instruction Number: WI-SN-10

This work instruction contains the following sections:

Review Preliminary Proposals

Proposal Assignment

Specific Requirements

Representations and Certifications


Review Proposals

Submit Proposals

Process Small/Disadvantaged Business Subcontracting Plan

Proposal Terms and Conditions Review

Review preliminary proposals

Pre-proposal definition:

Pre-proposals (also referred to as informal proposals, letter proposals, mini-proposals, preliminary proposals, letters of intent, pre-applications, concept papers, or white papers) are brief descriptions of research plans and estimated budgets that are sometimes submitted to gauge the interest, size and/or range of a competition for a particular sponsor.

Pre-proposals requiring ORSPA pre-award approval due to institutional commitments

1. Institutional Commitments are defined as:

  • When the sponsor requires submission by an Authorized Institutional Representative, or
  • When terms and conditions would make the pre-proposal binding to the full proposal submission, or
  • When the sponsor requires an itemized budget (more than just an estimate) and/or cost share.

2. RA will identify if the pre-proposal requires Authorized Organization Representative approval due to institutional commitments and if Research Operations Pre-Award will submit the pre-proposal.

3. If the pre-proposal is related to a limited submission, the RA will identify in ERA and will upload the approval of the PI eligibility to submit.

4. The GCO will run ERA activity, PNT Review Update or Complete.

5. GCO will proceed with submission and run ERA activity, Submitted To Sponsor (Non S2S). This activity is intended to record the submission of a pre-proposal.

Proposal assignment

1. In Smart Form Question 1.2-General Proposal Information, RA will identify if Research Operations Pre-Award will submit the proposal and a GCO will be assigned.

2. Following GCO assignment it will appear in the assigned GCO’s ERA “My Home” page in the “Proposals in Process” Tab.

Specific requirements

Specific requirements definition (SR):  Specialized Opportunities, High Profile Applications, and Significant Partnerships/Relationship Building and/or requires a dedicated GCO.

High profile (HP) applications:  Defined as 1) Tier II – Over $1 million per year, 2) Tier III – $5 million per year,  3) Significant cost share commitment (anything more than personnel effort), 4) Limited Submission, or 5) Project Management support by KED or unit.

Specialized opportunity (SO): These include KE Institutes and Initiatives often identified by the Research Development Group (RDG).  Defined as large scale and strategic proposals that are often lead by RDG and other offices with similar skill sets who coordinate/assist participants in proposal development processes. Assignments are made by the PFG Lead or Director of Pre-Award Services.

Significant partnerships/relationship building: All Mayo, Dignity, Adidas, Verizon, MIT, NAU, and UArizona transactions.

Representations and certifications

A representation and certification may require a higher level of signature authority and coordination with other ASU departments / units. Project Specific and Institutional Reps and Certs can come to our attention at any stage of a sponsored project (e.g. proposal development, submission, post-submission, agreement negotiation, post-award administration) and need to be managed as follows: 

Project specific representations and certifications: For Representations and Certifications forms that are project-specific, Research Operations staff will prepare and submit the PNT Support Request Template to the PNT Mailbox [email protected] for completion by the Proposal Functional Group (PFG). The Grant + Contract Officer (GCO) on the associated award or proposal will coordinate within ORSPA to complete the requested document and manage next steps (e.g., submit to sponsor, provide to RA/Unit, etc.).

Subrecipient certifications required at a pre-award stage can be completed by a Pre-Award GCO at the ‘Grant and Contract Officer level’ or above.  Questions with how to respond to a request are elevated to management prior to submission.

Institutional Certifications: When a form or certification is being completed on behalf of Arizona State University, the document is considered institutional or organizational in nature; these forms need to go directly to the Executive Director, Research Operations for completion.  These forms are generally in response to specific federal regulation(s), supplier database updates, annual (or other periodic) certifications, etc.


PNT is in a position to obtain Provost Signature through the Executive Director of Research Operations at the unit’s request.

Designated GCOs are authorized to sign proposal applications.  A full list of authorized officials to sign Grants, Contracts, and Agreements can be found in the Standard Institutional Information.

Review proposals

At any point during the development of a proposal, the assigned GCO has permission to review proposal element(s) and request changes.

1. Once approvals are obtained, RA will run ERA activity, Forward for PNT Review . This activity will capture the final review prior to submission.

1.1 If there are items a GCO needs to review prior to the review of the proposal, (contract terms and conditions, or if an agreement is needed to send with the proposal) RA will run the activity, Notify PNT. This will send an email to the assigned GCO reviewer. The GCO will then determine appropriate action, and forward to the [email protected] box for management.

2. GCO will review proposal element(s) that have been finalized & will be submitted to Sponsor in accordance with the Pre-Award Points of Reference. Following review of the proposal element(s), if there are any requested changes, the GCO will perform the following actions:

2.1 The GCO will request changes by running the ERA activity, PNT Requests Proposal Changes..

2.2 If changes are made or not made, the RA will run the ERA activity, Respond to PNT Request..

2.3 When received the GCO will run the ERA activity, PNT Review Update or Complete. This activity will capture:

2.3.1 Review of the funding announcement.

2.3.2 Level of review and Review complete.

2.3.3 Award Negotiation and Award Setup Comments.

Note: This activity can be run at any point during the review to assist the GCO. Only mark if the review is completed after the final review, as this moves the proposal to the next state.

Note: these activities are kept as part of the history record. To sort, go to the “History” tab select the column “activity” and this will put the items in alphabetical order, grouping all PNT Requests Proposal Changes together.

Please Note: Proposals that have not been reviewed or partially reviewed may encounter problems with submission (particularly with electronic submissions), or with noncompliance with University or Sponsor policies. Research Operations reserves the right to withdraw the proposal at any time. Potential awards from submissions which received no review may have issues of non-compliance or other serious problems discovered by Research Operations. If the award could place ASU at an unnecessary financial or legal risk the award may not be accepted by the university unless reasonable terms and conditions can be negotiated and it complies with university policies.

Submit proposals

1. S2S Proposals

1.1  RA will run the ERA activity, Validate Submission..

1.1.1  This will only validate for grants.gov errors and NIH agency specifics by checking for NIH errors or warnings.

1.1.2  If errors are present on a 424, the RA will be unable to complete the activity, Validate Submission..

1.2  RA can make changes to the 424 once it has been validated by running the ERA activity, “Reopen for Edit.”

1.2.1  If “Reopen for Edit” is run the activity, Validate Submission will need to be run again by RA after changes have been made.

1.3  GCO may need to run the ERA activity, Bypass Validations. This activity will allow the GCO to submit with errors present.

1.4  Prior to submission, the GCO will need to run the ERA activity, Submission Pre-Check. This is a technical check, and the GCO needs to confirm the Green confirmation.

1.5  After bypassing validations or if application was error free, the GCO will proceed with submission within the 424 by running activity, Submit to GrantsGov.

1.6  Once submission is complete, within the full proposal workspace:

1.6.1 The GCO will run the ERA activity PNT Review Update or Complete.

1.6.2  Within the full proposal workspace run the ERA activity, Submitted to Sponsor (S2S).. This activity is intended to record the official submission of a proposal; within the activity the GCO will select who needs to be notified. The state will change from PNT Ready to Submit to Submitted-Pending Sponsor Acceptance.

1.6.3  For NSF and NIH submissions the GCO will attach the FP and CO (from agencies’ website) to this activity for storage in ERA.

1.7  If error(s) encountered during submission, GCO must “Reopen for Edit.” Once errors are corrected, return to step 1.1, RA will run ERA activity, Validate Submission.

2.  Non-S2S Proposals

a.  GCO will run the ERA activity, PNT Review Update or Complete.

b.  GCO will proceed with submission and run ERA activity, Submitted to Sponsor (Non S2S)

c.  GCO will attach the SB (typically email) to this activity for storage in ERA.

Process small/disadvantaged business subcontracting plan

If the sponsor requires a Small/Disadvantaged Business Subcontracting Plan as a component of the proposal package, GCO will develop the Plan according to the Small or Disadvantaged Business Subcontracting Plan Processing job aid.

Proposal terms and conditions review

If Funding Announcement identifies Terms and Conditions that may apply, either the RA will inform the GCO or the GCO will inform the RA. The GCO will follow the process instructions outlined in the Pre-Award Points of Reference.