Before you begin using Grant Runner, you need to complete the following activities:
- Find an eligible funding opportunity
- Register with eRA Commons
- Get access to SAGE
Find an Eligible Funding Opportunity
To search for eligible grant opportunities, go to Grants.gov. When you find a relevant NIH opportunity, be sure to make a note of the funding opportunity number. You will need this when you complete the Grant Runner wizard.
Register with eRA Commons
PIs (Principal Investigators) applying for grants from the NIH must have an account on the electronic Research Administration Commons (eRA Commons) website. eRA Commons serves as a virtual meeting place where the NIH exchanges information with its grantees and applicants can track their applications.
Please note the following:
- Registration produces an ID, which you must enter in the credential field on the RR Senior/Key Profile Component. NIH will reject your application without the PD/PI Commons ID.
- This is a one-time registration. Once a PI creates an account, be sure to enter the same PD/PI Commons ID each time that PI applies for NIH funds.
- Make a note of the information used to register at eRA Commons. The PI information within the grant application should match this information as closely as possible.
- For a link to the eRA Commons registration page and additional information, see NIH’s Registration Requirements for Electronic Submission.
Get Access to SAGE
SAGE (System to Administer Grants Electronically) is the UW system through which you submit your grant materials to the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP). In order to use SAGE, you have access. SAGE uses the UW security system known as ASTRA (Access to Systems, Tools, Resources and Applications).
You can try logging into SAGE at www.sage.washington.edu.
If you have difficulty logging in, contact your unit’s ASTRA administrator to ensure you have a role.
Create a Grant Runner Application in SAGE
You will use the Grant Runner Wizard to create your application. The wizard will step you through a series of questions to verify if your application is eligible to use the automated submission process. You will need to provide the Funding Opportunity ID to complete the wizard. This ID Is listed in the synopsis for each grant opportunity on Grants.gov.
The Grant Runner Wizard provides tools for you to look up UW organizational codes, sponsors, and Principal Investigators. The Wizard data will automatically populate parts of your eGC1 and SF424 forms, so you do not have to enter the same information twice.
- The Sponsor’s Application Instructions document and Program Announcement (PA) should always be the primary source of information regarding important criteria, such as page count, file size, and document types required by the sponsoring agency.
- All documents that are attached to the SF424 (R&R) form must be in PDF format.
What is Grant Runner?
Grant Runner enables you to complete grants.gov applications for certain National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding opportunities from directly within SAGE. It integrates the standard government grant application forms (also known as the SF424 Forms) with the UW electronic grants and contract (eGC1) application. With the click of a button, the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) can electronically submit your application via Grants.gov to the sponsor.
What are the Benefits of Grant Runner?
- You no longer have to download SF424 forms from Grants.gov and attach the completed forms to your eGC1. You can complete these forms directly in SAGE.
- Grant Runner pre-populates your SF424 forms with UW institutional codes, OSP contact information, and other standard material.
- Grant Runner automatically checks for common SF424 errors. It alerts you when you need to complete a required field or adjust an entry to meet NIH standards.
- You can view the Grants.gov tracking number and NIH status directly from the History and Comments section of your eGC1.
Who is Eligible to use Grant Runner?
You can use Grant Runner if you are completing any of the supported National Institutes of Health activity codes.
The Grant Runner Wizard will step you through a series of questions to verify if your application is eligible to use the automated submission process to Grants.gov. To complete the wizard, you must provide the funding opportunity number. Be sure to note this number when you search for funding opportunities on Grants.gov.
If your funding opportunity does not meet the Grant Runner eligibility criteria, you may begin a standard (non-Grant Runner) eGC1 form. You will have to manually complete and attach all necessary forms to your eGC1. To download an application package from Grants.gov, go to Application Download.
If you’re new to Grant Runner, you might want to read Before You Begin for information on preliminary steps (account setup, SAGE access, etc.).
For help with specific Grant Runner forms, see the corresponding user guide article.
SAGE creates the approval flow (graphical and text) based on data in the eGC1 and the routing rules for each school/college. The flow displays which personnel and unit or compliance reviewers should review the eGC1 and its attachments.
Once an eGC1 has an organization code receiving funding and a PI, the system can generate a draft version of the approval flow. This can be viewed from either the PI, Personnel, & Organizations page or the Certify & Route page of the eGC1. As you add other research personnel, other data such as cost sharing, or responses to compliance questions to your eGC1, this draft version of the graph will reflect those changes.
When you complete the eGC1 and start it routing, SAGE creates a final flow and sends out the initial approval notifications. If you withdraw an application, or a reviewer returns it, when you re-completed it, the system re-generates the approval flow to adjust for any changes you make to the eGC1.
The approval graph appears the same for all reviewers, with the exception of the bold border that indicates your approval node on the graph and the Reason for your review information in the Approval Status Data section. Most people only have one role, so the border will always appear around the same approval node.
If you have more than one approval role, you may see an application listed more than once on your My Approvals page. You will need to approve for each role separately.
For more information, see the sections on Reviewers and Compliance Reviewers.
The System to Administer Grants Electronically (SAGE) is the tool that researchers and grant administrators use to prepare proposals for approval and submission to the funding agency. At the UW, the appropriate campus units, compliance offices, and the Office of Sponsored Programs must review and approve all grant and contract proposals. The Approvals component of SAGE manages the electronic routing of the proposal for approval.
This guide describes the functionality of the Approvals component.
The “approval flow” is a sequential list of all UW individuals, divisions, departments, deans, and/or compliance offices (including OSP), that must review and sign off on a proposal before its submission to the sponsor. (See: How the Flow is Generated) SAGE automatically routes the proposal to the individuals and units included in the approval flow. The system also sends email notifications of pending approvals to Approvers on campus. OSP uses their SPAERC (Sponsored Projects Administration & Electronic Research Compliance) tasklist to manage proposals waiting for approval. (See: Reviewer Email Notifications)
As a reviewer, you can access the approval flow for an application from the Approvals tab in SAGE. You have the option of viewing a graphical or a textual representation of the approval flow. If you are a preparer or owner of the eGC1, you can access the approval flow from the Certify & Route page of the application.
Generally, anyone who appears on the SAGE approval flow is referred to as a reviewer. More specifically, reviewers are either Approvers or Watchers.
- monitor the status of an eGC1; they are not required to approve the eGC1
- may choose to “mark” the application as Watched
- may add a comment that then becomes part of the permanent record of the proposal