UNC Charlotte began a review of the University’s electronic research administration (eRA) system to ensure the University has the records it needs when it needs them. The resulting replacement of Niner Online Research Management (NORM) also required a system that 1. works with Banner, 2. manages each proposal’s full lifecycle, and 3. offers scheduled and ad-hoc reporting capabilities.
In the end, like other UNC System schools, the IT Project 95 team landed on the 2-decades experienced InfoEd eRA.
Learning the Ropes
As with most high-footprint technology changes, the work of IT Project 95 has caused growth and growing pains. According to Chris Krumm, Manager of the Niner Research System, differences between policy and practice became apparent during the Conflict of Interest (COI) module rollout.
“Specifically, the team discovered that the External Professional Activities for Pay policy did not provide automatic approval after ten days as practice indicated,” said Krumm.
Project 95 allows functional areas to examine their processes, uncover such inconsistencies, and work toward appropriate resolutions.
Finding the Words
In the beginning, the team quickly realized they would need to walk-the-walk and talk-the-talk: Professionals had to learn new jargon and concepts to communicate the project to others.
“Ultimately, these challenges strengthened the knowledge base of both the research and technical teams and enhanced communication across UNC Charlotte's research enterprise channels,” said Krumm.
Overall, the Project 95 team reports that the implementation of InfoEd has provided an opportunity for the University to progress while examining processes and efficiently resolving any discrepancies. The team expects the full campus rollout will allow most of UNC Charlotte to leverage InfoEd’s eRA by mid-2021.