Collaborator Functionality in PIWRS and Payroll Certification System

By Bobbi McCracken (Associate Vice Chancellor for Financial Services and Controller) and David Gracey (Director of Enterprise Application Development) |
Riverside, Ca –

The Accounting Office and Computing & Communications are pleased to announce enhanced functionality related to “collaborators” in both the PIWRS Monthly Reports and the Annual Payroll Certification System. Based on feedback received, this enhancement will improve communication and sharing of information between Prime PIs and Co-PIs related to month reports and annual salary certifications.

Within PIWRS, Prime PIs can associate one or more collaborators with a fund. When a collaborator is associated with a Prime PI’s fund(s), the collaborator has the ability to:

  • View the PIWRS Monthly Summary and Detail Report associated with the fund.
  • Enter and view comments within the Summary and Detail Report associated with the fund.
  • Access the Annual Payroll Certification associated with the fund in ready-only mode. This feature appears as a new menu option available in PIWRS.
  • Enter and view comments associated with the fund’s Annual Payroll Certification.

Who can be established as a “collaborator”? Collaborators are limited to individuals possessing a Prime PI or Co-PI role on any extramurally funded sponsored project.

Who can designate a “collaborator” on a Prime PI’s fund? Only the Prime PI of a fund has the ability to add and remove collaborators using the Preference tab within PIWRS. PIWRS Coordinators can view information to see if a PI has designated a collaborator.

What should be considered when establishing a “collaborator”?   The Prime PI should be comfortable allowing the collaborator to see all budget and expenditure (including salaries) information for the particular fund in question. The collaborator should be able to assist the Prime PI in confirming the appropriateness of expenditures, especially salaries as they related to Annual Payroll Certifications. The “comments” feature in both the PIWRS Monthly Reporting System and the Annual Payroll Certification System may help to facilitate communication between the Prime PI and the collaborator.

Does this functionality allow the “collaborator” to be restricted to only view a specific activity code (or FAU) associated with the designated fund? At this time, the collaborator will see all transactions associated with the designated fund. A future enhancement will allow for a more discrete view by FAU.

This enhancement to collaborator functionality will be deployed in the PIWRS the week of  4/21/2014. A separate announcement has been sent to Prime PIs and Co-PIs with active awards. Departments are encouraged to examine this new functionality and determine how it can be incorporated into the unit’s process. Use of the collaborator role is designed to facilitate communication between Prime PIs and Co-PIs, thereby ensuring the prompt review of monthly PIWRS and completion of annual Payroll Certifications.

Questions and comments can be sent to