At institutions with significant research programs, leaders are challenged from multiple directions—including increasingly complex regulatory requirements and more intense competition for a smaller pool of funding. Often these pressures can threaten the viability of research programs.  

At Attain, one of our core strengths is helping research enterprises, including colleges and universities, to develop and implement cost-effective ways to improve operations and reduce risk. Our cost-effective, innovative solutions are always on-time and on-budget, and range from optimizing technology investments to improving grants management and operational efficiencies, increasing cash flow, and reducing risk exposure.

With a comprehensive matrix of capabilities and expertise, we’re able to fill in any gaps that may exist—and help build internal capabilities that endure. Our team includes experienced professionals, dedicated to our core values, who have worked at every level of the research enterprise in colleges, universities, academic medical centers, and research institutes throughout the country.

As a result, we’re able to help organizations optimize their capabilities at every step of the process—from identifying, applying for, and negotiating terms and conditions from new funding sources, to managing and administering every aspect of sponsored programs. Institutional leaders can focus their efforts where they have the greatest impact—maintaining and growing their research program.

Research Strategic Planning

We help institutional leaders identify the most promising areas within their research portfolios for future investment. By weighing revenue potential and strategic importance versus capabilities and competencies, we collaborate to assess data, develop alternatives, and create a productive strategy that distinguishes our clients from competing institutions.

Research Administration Benchmarking

Attain is the exclusive provider of the quantitative, systematic benchmarking and best practices program formerly administered by the Society of Research Administrators and the National Association of College and University Business Officers.

Research Management Assessments
(Pre- and Post-Award)

Attain performs diagnostic assessments of pre- and post-award organizations, including organizational structure, staffing requirements, business policies and processes, supporting technologies, reporting, and more. We help institutions ensure that their structures and systems support the research mission and serve faculty researchers well—without being overly burdensome. Working with our clients, we deliver detailed insights and comparisons using relevant industry best practices.

Grant Account Deficit Resolution

Attain’s detailed, comprehensive approach identifies and evaluates the research program’s current and potential liabilities. Wherever appropriate, we also recommend specific policies and procedures to prevent and/or resolve research deficits in a timely manner.

Business Process Outsourcing (BPO)

Outsourcing is a viable option for research organizations with insufficient research volume, staffing funds, or compliance management capabilities. Unlike other BPO providers, our professionals have experience serving at every level of the research enterprise.

Subcontract Monitoring Compliance

We help clients control costs involved with subcontractor labor and non-labor expenses. From assessing contracts, invoices, and supporting documentation to performing site visits, we establish an internal audit and risk-level for each subcontractor and, where necessary, recommend training and other corrective actions.

Remote Invoicing and FFR Filing

Using Virtual Private Network solutions, we remotely prepare invoices per grant program specifications, perform cursory compliance reviews, and prepare reports. We can also perform analyses in project reconciliation, salary caps, fringe and F&A, out-of-period costs, allowability and allocability, and sponsor accounts receivable.

Specialized Service Facility (SSF) and Recharge Centers

We are uniquely qualified to help institutions with underdeveloped standard operating procedures and financial management guidelines through the assessment and development of funding models for unique, complex service centers, such as High Performance Computing, Flow Cytometry Core, Animal Care, and others.

Policy and Procedure Development/Deployment

Leveraging years of industry knowledge and best practices experience, we develop and/or revise research administration policies and procedures to ensure regulatory compliance. By doing so, we open doors to new growth opportunities while controlling the risk involved in research award management.

Time and Effort Reporting System Assessments

Attain specializes in helping institutions improve management and compliance with Time and Effort reporting requirements. We can assess existing reporting systems for compliance with Federal regulations, design and implement new systems, streamline related business processes, develop management reports, and train client staff. 

Research Commercialization

We streamline the search for commercial funding, performing research portfolio assessments to evaluate commercialization feasibility and helping our clients to develop and prepare business plans.   

To learn more about our Grants Management solutions, please contact us