On behalf of East Carolina University (ECU), the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) is responsible for issuing, negotiating and executing subawards / subcontracts on sponsored projects. A subaward is a legal commitment by ECU and must be executed by a university official authorized by the President of the UNC system.

In most cases, if a subaward is included in the original grant application, approved in the budget and award by the sponsor, then competitive bidding policies will not apply. Terms and conditions of the prime award to ECU will be passed to the subrecipient in the subaward documents.  

Subawards cannot be executed until OSP has received and processed the prime award to the ECU PI. OSP cannot issue subawards against a Financial Guarantee account.

In order for OSP to issue the subaward, the PI must fully complete and submit via email to their Grant Officer, the Subaward Checklist, a detailed scope of work and a budget. The scope of work and budget must be in accordance with the grant award.  

Incomplete checklists will be returned to the sender for completion. 

The Subaward Checklist will be retained in RAMSeS for future use and reference.

Subaward Checklist
The Scope of Work is the section of a subaward that describes the work to be undertaken by the subrecipient, and including, but not limited to:

  • Objective, aims or purpose
  • Period of performance
  • A general description of the actions to be performed by the subcontractor and the expected results
  • A list of detailed work requirements;list tasks and what is expected;should provide both technical and performance specifications.
  • Performance, quality and timeliness requirements - this includes required or acceptable levels of performance on each specific task measured in terms of accuracy, response time, and speed.
  • Workload requirements - a description of levels or size of contractual effort.
  • Personnel requirements - minimum qualifications or skill levels expected in the contractor's staffing.
  • Government-furnished equipment and other resources to be furnished to the subcontractor.
  • Reporting requirements - describe any reports to be submitted by the contractor to show progress.
The grant officer will prepare the subaward and send it the the subrecipient's Research Officer. Any changes to the contract must be negotiated and approved through the Grant Officer in OSP. Upon execution of the subaward by ECU and the subrecipient institution, OSP will attach all relevant documents in RAMSeS, deliver a hard copy to the Office of Grants and Contracts (OGC) and the subrecipient's Research Officer. Any IRB, IACUC and/or COI approvals must be in place for a contract to be executed. Only upon receipt of a fully executed subaward should the subgrantee begin work on the project;any work started prior to receipt of this document is at the risk of the subgrantee.

Subaward Modifications

Changes to the subaward must be made in writing via a subaward modification. Such changes include, but is not limited to, increase/decrease in funding, extensions of time on the project, changes in the scope of work, changes in the PI or subgrantee institution or termination of the subaward. All modification must be in line with the terms and conditions of the prime award. Depending on the nature of the modification request, prior approval from the sponsor may be required. The ECU PI must complete the Subaward Modification Checklist and submit it to the OSP Grant Officer via email. 

Subaward Modification Checklist

Invoicing and payments

The subgrantee is responsible for invoicing in accordance with the terms of the subaward. The ECU PI is responsible to sign each invoice. The PI signature certifies that the expenses invoiced are allowable and in accordance with the scope of work and approval of the work completed to date. If there is any concern about the invoice or the work product or progress on the project by the subgrantee, the PI should NOT sign the invoice. The PI should contact the OGC accountant or the OSP Grant Officer for guidance.  ECU may withhold payment of the final invoice until all reports have been submitted by the subgrantee.