Grants and Contracts Administrator

University of Chicago

University of Chicago

Chicago, IL, USA
Posted on Tuesday, January 23, 2024


PSD Local Business Center: Astro Plus

About the Department

The Physical Sciences Division (PSD) has a rich history of advancing and defining new fields of discovery in the physical sciences and mathematics, and this tradition of innovation continues today. Our inquiry and impact spans from the edge of the observable universe to human-computer interaction, from biophysical materials science to the geologic record of seawater composition, from gravitational waves to geometric flows, and beyond.

The Physical Sciences Division Local Business Center (PSD-LBC) provides grants and finance management support to faculty, researchers, and administrators for many of the organizations (departments, research centers, and institutes) within the Physical Sciences Division. Our goal is to provide high levels of service in order to advance the PSD’s mission in research and education.

Job Summary

The Grants & Contracts Administrator provides professional support for pre-award and/or post-award activities relating to grant and contract proposals and funding within a department or unit. Pre-award activities include research, preparing applications, and editing proposals. Post-award activities include compliance monitoring, payment processing, and salary allocations. Performs work with moderate guidance and utilizes knowledge of University and business drivers. This position is eligible for a hybrid work schedule.


  • Works with faculty and program staff, and other administrators to advise on, plan, and manage financial aspects of sponsored project proposal preparation and submission including budgeting and subcontracting.

  • Performs compliance review of all proposals for adherence to University, agency, and federal requirements.

  • Coordinates active grant management activities, including submission of progress reports, non-competing applications, amendments, technical reports, just-in time submissions, no-cost extensions, agency required re-budgeting, carry-over requests, Data Use Agreements, and Material Transfer Agreements.

  • Communicates and collaborates with URA to facilitate smooth transition throughout the full grant life cycle.

  • Advises faculty, program staff, procurement specialists, and other administrators on policies and procedures for fulfilling all aspects of the procurement process including purchasing, internal requisition, and personal and travel reimbursement.

  • Performs financial accounting, including financial projections, account closing and account reconciliation.

  • Provides professional support as a primary account administrator for account owners, primarily faculty, in an intensive customer service environment.

  • Analyzes and prepares budgets, creates accounts, and works with the financial accounting system to allocate, authorize, monitor, and control expenses.

  • Oversees gift and endowment accounts, departmental operating accounts and faculty unrestricted research accounts.

  • Handles straightforward post-award activities including account creations, regulatory and compliance monitoring, salary allocations, effort reporting, grant projections, cost allocations, cost center charges, equipment inventory, invoice preparation, grant closing process, and account closing.

  • Prepares summaries of grants and effort allocations for Principal Investigators, meets with them and responds to their questions. Coordinates with other departments/units/divisions regarding multi-investigator grants. Serves as department contact for annual audits and agency site visits.

  • Performs other related work as needed.

Minimum Qualifications


Minimum requirements include a college or university degree in related field.

Work Experience:

Minimum requirements include knowledge and skills developed through 2-5 years of work experience in a related job discipline.



Preferred Qualifications


  • Previous experience with financial services or sponsored projects.

  • Knowledge of Federal Circulars applicable to universities (OMB A-21, A-110, A-133 or the Uniform Guidance) or interpretation of similar regulations.

  • Previous experience with systems used to manage grant submissions.

  • Working knowledge of University systems such as AURA, FAS, ACCTS/PETS, Business Objects and Workday.

Preferred Competencies

  • Strong computer skills including word processing, database management, and spreadsheet skills (Microsoft Excel).

  • Excellent attention to detail and organizational skills.

  • Budgeting and financial accounting skills.

  • Ability to work independently to manage a diverse range of activities and deadlines.

  • Time management skills and the ability to handle multiple, concurrent tasks within deadlines.

  • Excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to interact professionally and diplomatically with individuals from across the division and University.

  • Flexible and adaptable to changes in workflow and procedures.

  • Understand and interpret University, federal and non-federal grants and contract guidelines, policies, and procedures.

  • Multitask and manage multiple projects in client-service environment.

  • Maintain strict confidentiality, including handling salary information as part of proposal budgets.

  • Diplomatic and customer service-based approach to interacting with colleagues and others.

  • Work effectively as a part of a team.

Working Conditions

  • This position is eligible for a hybrid work schedule.

Application Documents

  • Resume (required)

  • Cover Letter (required)

  • References (preferred)

When applying, the document(s) MUST be uploaded via the My Experience page, in the section titled Application Documents of the application.

Job Family

Financial Management

Role Impact

Individual Contributor

FLSA Status


Pay Frequency


Scheduled Weekly Hours


Benefits Eligible


Drug Test Required


Health Screen Required


Motor Vehicle Record Inquiry Required


Posting Statement

The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity/Disabled/Veterans and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, military or veteran status, genetic information, or other protected classes under the law. For additional information please see the University's Notice of Nondiscrimination.

Staff Job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773-702-5800 or submit a request via Applicant Inquiry Form.

We seek a diverse pool of applicants who wish to join an academic community that places the highest value on rigorous inquiry and encourages a diversity of perspectives, experiences, groups of individuals, and ideas to inform and stimulate intellectual challenge, engagement, and exchange.

All offers of employment are contingent upon a background check that includes a review of conviction history. A conviction does not automatically preclude University employment. Rather, the University considers conviction information on a case-by-case basis and assesses the nature of the offense, the circumstances surrounding it, the proximity in time of the conviction, and its relevance to the position.

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