Deployment of the Sapphire Post Award Financial Reporting module is planned for 10 December 2022.
This includes the migration of all financial reports submitted to us either through Research Grant Management System (RGMS) or using the offline template as part of interim arrangements.
To assist Administering Institutions and Eligible Organisations further information on key changes has been outlined on NHMRC's website.
RAOs are asked to take note of the updates and details below.
Financial reports migrated to Sapphire
All financial reports submitted to us either through RGMS or using offline template as part of interim arrangements will be migrated to Sapphire.
A dashboard will be released in mid to late January 2023 showing submitted reports and their status.
Details of financial reports yet to be submitted will be available to download from Sapphire. If there are multiple reports due for a grant across multiple years, only the earliest year due will be included in the template download and count.
Financial reports processed by NHMRC
Prior to data migration we have reviewed all financial statements including those previously accepted and there are a very small number of grants that will require revision and/or resubmission of financial reports. For example, some reports may be missing from previous year/s or accepted reports contained previously unidentified input errors.
We have processed all reports submitted to us and the status of those reports will be updated in Sapphire as part of the data migration.
Processed reports will have a status of ‘Approved’ (report accepted) or ‘Rejected’ (reports have identified errors in the submitted report and/or previous financial report/s creating calculation discrepancies). A small number remain as ‘Submitted’ (reports we need to further review).
We will contact Administering Institutions and MRFF Eligible Organisations where financial reports have been rejected.
Sapphire financial reporting – key changes
Key changes to the financial reporting process are outlined below and on NHMRC's website, to assist AIs and MRFF EOs.
All financial expenditure data reported to NHMRC has been mapped to the expenditure categories aligned with the revised financial reporting templates. This is consistent with the relevant grant guidelines and the Direct Research Cost Guidelines. Previous Financial statement information will be retained on file for record keeping.
Financial reports will be managed in Sapphire through a separate Financial Reports tab and no longer show as ‘milestones’ on the Grant Milestones tab.
All Annual Financial Statement, Acquittal Statement and Transfer Acquittal milestones will be removed from Sapphire as part of the release of Sapphire Post Award Financial Reporting. Information on previous grant financial reporting submitted is expected to be available (and able to be exported) via a dashboard expected to be released in January 2023.
Financial reporting templates will now be downloaded from Sapphire, not from the NHMRC website. The template will continue to allow bulk upload. Note the December 2022 release will only support an upload of a template where all errors in the batch have been identified and corrected. Error handling will identify the error to be corrected. Details on error handling will be available on the Sapphire Help Page.
The template is in .xlxs format and will download data for all financial reports due and available to submit at the time of the template download. Note sequential year reporting.
The template is to be downloaded by report type: Annual Financial Statement, Transfer Acquittal, and Financial Acquittal.
The template download will include a combination of pre-populated fields and fields for AIs and MRFF EOs to enter their expenditure data.
Sapphire will calculate fields that are based on information in system (Grant identifier; income = grant funds paid; balance brought forward = previous year final result etc.).
If you do not intend to submit all due reports at the same time, as the template download includes all grant financial reports due, you will need to remove rows for grant reports that will not be uploaded in the submission prior to upload to avoid reporting of zero expenditure. Zero expenditure in a reporting year will not create an error as there may be instances where this is a valid report.
Financial reports will only be available to download and able to be uploaded in sequential order. That is, the previous year's financial report must be submitted before the following year's report becomes available.
Information will only download into the template for grants that have had the previous financial statement submitted.
If there are outstanding annual financial reports, these need to be successfully submitted before a Financial Acquittal Statement will be available to download.
Submission of reports
Financial Report submission will return to standard submission timeframes for 2023.
Annual Financial Statements are due to be submitted to NHMRC by 30 April following each calendar year of funding, Financial Acquittal Statements are due six months after the funding period has been completed, or six months after termination of a grant, or one month after the transfer of a grant.
Financial reporting in Sapphire
All expenditure reported to us has been mapped by us and will be migrated to the revised Sapphire expenditure categories consistent with the relevant funding rules/grant guidelines and the DRC Guidelines where relevant. Previous Financial Summary statement information, as provided, has been retained on file.
Further information on the use of expenditure fields in the template is outlined on NHMRC's website.