Worktribe is a modern, highly performant system, which is expected to increase the efficiency and transparency of internal pre-award processes. It includes a number of areas of functionality that should provide a range of benefits:
In Worktribe, there is the facility to provide read-only access to either a user’s own records or those within a given area of the College. This level of access will be allocated to academic staff members.
If a project involves multiple departments, it will include subprojects. In Worktribe, a super user will be able to edit a subproject if they can access it because it is within their department. They will also be able to view the lead and other involved subprojects, but not edit them. A super user with access to the main project because it is within their department will be able to edit all subprojects on the record irrespective of the department.
Partners are recorded on records in Worktribe through selecting them from a list, and various cost elements can be assigned to them. This will make identifying the College’s partners much clearer, particularly from a reporting perspective.
Costing Against Legacy Salary Scales
Staff members that are still paid on old legacy salary scales can be costed in Worktribe. Importantly though, these scales will not be available for selection when costing other staff members, only those already paid on them. This should simplify the costing process and reduce the likelihood of error.
Highlighting Changes to Default Values
Relevant staff members’ salary information is transferred from HR into Worktribe on a nightly basis to ensure accurate costing. If a staff member chooses to amend the details that have been transferred from HR when costing, the changes they have made will be highlighted to make others aware and to simplify the approvals process.
Award Budget Reprofiling
Even when a proposal is submitted in line with a funder’s pricing policy, there are often differences on the award letter compared to the application. As many funders, particularly Research Councils, provide award values at an aggregated level, it is difficult to interpret what has actually been awarded against each budget line. To aid this, awarded budgets can be entered at either an individual budget item level or at an aggregated level. The value entered can then be apportioned to any line items within that group according to their original values.
On the front page of Worktribe when a user logs in, an announcements section alerts them of relevant news or information, such as upcoming system downtime or recently changed configuration.
Duplicate Budget Lines
Within a costing, to save time where multiple similar items are being added, a user can copy an existing budget line to avoid rekeying the same information.
Where there may be a target recovery for an industry contract, such as 120% of FEC, there is a facility to define this target and for the required surplus to be allocated to the price of the indirect costs line for the project.
Automatic Outcome Progression
Research Services are not always informed when an application is unsuccessful. Currently, PIs are contacted to request this outcome after a given period. Updating the record to “Declined” is then a manual process. In Worktribe, applications are automatically set as Declined after 12 months from submission if no outcome has been recorded to save this manual process. This status can of course be further changed if required.
To ensure clarity of communication and to retain a central record, staff members can leave comments on grant application records, including tagging of colleagues. The comments section also includes a record of many changes that are made to the record, such as adding or removing costs, to retain a transparent audit record. Users can even leave comments specifically associated with individual fields within the record.
The College’s charge-out facilities set specific costing rates each year, including a separate industry rate. In Worktribe, these rates are recorded and assigned to the facilities, so users can merely select the appropriate facility and funder type for the relevant rate to be allocated in the costing.