• Thu. May 23rd, 2024

Researchers can now access their financial accounts in updated portal

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State’s Office of Research Information Systems (ORIS) has updated its researcher portal by adding a new module, called myFunds, enables researchers to more easily navigate and manage their accounts, including grants and startup funds. The action is part of the Research Support Transformation Project (RSTP), which aims to reduce administrative burdens and increase the efficiency of operations so faculty and staff members can more effectively pursue groundbreaking discoveries, innovations and scholarship that address pressing societal issues.   

Accessible to researchers and their delegates, upon request, the module extends existing features within the myResearch Portal and enables researchers to easily view in real time the account-level details for their external sponsored research grants, such as federal and foundation grants, and internal accounts, such as startup funds and royalties.  

In addition to streamlining the financial tracking process, the myResearch Portal now includes a communication mechanism for researchers to ask questions of their financial or research office staff members related to account summaries and balances. By clicking an email icon that appears when they hover over the summary line detail the relevant account, researchers can make the information available in their messages. 

“Faculty members are in essence small business owners who invest in people, equipment and materials,” said Andrew Read, senior vice president for research. “By reintroducing financial information within the myResearch Portal, we are improving the ease with which researchers can monitor and utilize their funds, while we simultaneously work on further functionality improvements. For example, we hope to add projection capabilities so faculty will be able to model future expenditure scenarios, a key element of planning.”  

To launch the myResearch portal, members of ORIS worked with faculty champions Mauricio Terrones, George A. and Margaret M. Downsbrough Head of the Department of Physics, and Susan Trolier-McKinstry, Evan Pugh University Professor and Steward S. Flaschen Professor of Ceramic Science and Engineering. The faculty champions, chosen because of their large and complex grant portfolios, provided critical feedback regarding the design and format of the new module. ORIS also collected feedback from other faculty and staff groups, including the faculty senate.  

Read noted that researcher feedback is critical to the RSTP process, and he is grateful to Terrones and Trolier-McKinstry for their contributions. He added that researchers can provide input to the RSTP process through a feedback portal offered through SharePoint. The SharePoint site also contains the latest information about RSTP, and researchers are encouraged to check in regularly. 

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