FDP Expanded Clearinghouse System Instructions

 

Table of Contents

1.       Background. 3

1.1         Purpose of FDP Expanded Clearinghouse Initiative. 3

1.2         Pilot Phases. 3

1.2.1          Pilot Phase 1. 3

1.2.2          Pilot Phase 2. 3

1.2.3          System end users. 3

1.3         General expectations. 3

2.       Workflow.. 4

2.1         Overall process. 4

3.       Getting started. 5

3.1         Compatible systems/web browsers. 5

3.2         Helpful to know.. 5

3.3         Getting access to the System.. 5

3.3.1          Where to find it. 5

3.3.2          How to become a user. 5

3.3.3          Dual user roles. 5

3.3.4          Difference between Users and Contacts. 5

3.4         Responsibilities of the Organizational Owner. 6

3.5         Creating a profile. 6

3.6         Adding other users for your organization. 6

3.7         Navigation. 8

3.7.1          Logging in. 8

3.7.2          Organization of information. 8

3.7.3          Editing the profile. 8

3.7.4          Data entry order. 8

3.7.5          Entering Contacts. 9

3.7.6          Saving information. 9

4.       Completing an Profile. 9

4.1         Entering information into the profile. 9

4.1.1          Formatting of information. 9

4.1.2          Primary data elements. 9

4.1.3          Data validation. 10

4.2         Use of "Comments". 10

5.       Submitting/certifying a Profile. 11

5.1         Submitting a Profile. 11

5.2         Certifying a Profile. 11

5.3         Publishing a Profile. 12

5.4         Rejecting a Profile. 12

5.5         Retracting a Profile. 12

6.       Updating information in the System.. 13

7.       Deleting a Profile. 13

8.       Where to go for help. 14

9.       Accessing information in the system.. 14

9.1         Searching for information. 14

9.2         Printing information. 14

Appendix A. 15

Type of Organization Users and Associated Permissions. 15

Organizational Owner (Organization “super user”) 15

User Manager. 15

Profile Editor. 15

Authorized Profile Certifier. 15

Permissions authorized for each type of user. 15

Appendix B. 16

Type of Contact and Definitions. 16

 

 

 


 

1.   Background  

1.1      Purpose of FDP Expanded Clearinghouse Initiative

The FDP Expanded Clearinghouse Initiative started as a pilot to test whether a standardized, streamlined subrecipient entity data repository was feasible, and whether such a repository effectively reduced the data collection and review burden for pass-through entities and subrecipient entities alike, while still ensuring stewardship over federal funding. 

 

1.2      Pilot Phases

1.2.1      Pilot Phase 1

The FDP Expanded Clearinghouse data repository was established in 2016.  79 FDP member organizations submitted 127 Entity Profiles (one profile per DUNS number generally) in Excel, which were posted in PDF format on the FDP website.  Through these profiles, Pilot Member organizations agreed to make information about themselves publicly available instead of needing to complete subrecipient commitment forms.  They additionally agreed to access organizational information through the Profiles in lieu of requesting that subrecipients complete commitment forms.   

 

1.2.2      Pilot Phase 2

In 2017, FDP launched a web-based Expanded Clearinghouse System (System).  Instead of using Excel/PDF documents, Participating organizations enter and access information in an online system.  The System serves as a single, electronic repository for information needed for pass-through entities to perform subrecipient risk assessments and to do ongoing monitoring of static or annualized data related to subrecipient monitoring. 


This document provides instructions for using the web-based system:
fdpclearinghouse.org.  

 

1.2.3      System end users

The primary end users of the System are those FDP members that are participating organizations, who will both:

 

·       Post information about their organizations and

·       Access information about other participating organizations who are their subrecipients. 

 

Other possible end users include those organizations working with participating organizations who will use the System to access organizational information.   

 

1.3      General expectations

Participating organizations are expected to:

 

·       Agree that their Profile, which includes rate agreement and audit information, can be posted as public information on the FDP Expanded Clearinghouse website

·       Agree to timely update their Profiles when necessary (e.g., new audit results, updated F&A rates, changes in answers to key questions) and at least annually

·       Forego use of their individual subrecipient commitment and other forms to collect entity data when issuing subawards to other participating organizations

·       Access the posted profiles to obtain needed static/annual data from their proposed subrecipient

·       Evaluate the effectiveness and impact of the system

 

The bullets listed above constitute a partial list of expectations.  The Business Use Agreement details the functions of the FDP Web-based Expanded Clearinghouse, the roles of the FDP Expanded Clearinghouse Working Group, as well as the expectations of participating organizations. 

2.   Workflow

2.1      Overall process

·       The System Administrators create the initial accounts for participating organizations.  This first account created for each organization is the Organizational Owner (Owner).

·       The Organizational Owner creates a Profile in the FDP Web-Based Expanded Clearinghouse.  At this point, the profile is in DRAFT status.

·       After the Profile has been created, the Organizational Owner creates other users.  For a full list of users and permissions, see Appendix A.  When a new user is created, the individual receives an e-mail indicating that an account has been created for them.   

·       The Owner may enter profile information or may assign the entry of information to a Profile Editor (Editor).  Either the Owner or Editor enters information into the Profile.

·       Once the Profile is complete, the user submits it to the participating organization’s Authorized Profile Certifier (i.e., an Authorized Official) for certification.  The status is changed at this point to CERTIFYING.

·       The Authorized Profile Certifier receives an e-mail notification to review the profile.

·       The Authorized Profile Certifier certifies the profile or, if necessary, requests changes from the Editor. 

·       Once the profile has been certified, the profile status becomes SUBMITTED, and the FDP admin users review. 

·       The FDP Administrators check the following:

o   Responses and information seem appropriate;

o   Fields are completed;

o   Hyperlinks work and go to the appropriate place based on data element – for certain data elements, it is not okay to provide a hyperlink to a general research administration web page and expect people to search around for information;

o   Comments provided in “Comments” box are clear and appropriate for the public;

o   Legal Entity Name and DUNS number match SAM record; and

o   If the audit attached is for a broader entity, Primary Audit Entity information is provided.    

Other than described above, the FDP administrators are not verifying the accuracy of the information entered; that is the responsibility of the participating organization.  

·       If all is well, the FDP Administrators publish the profile, and it becomes publicly available on the FDP Expanded Clearinghouse website.  The status changes at this point to PUBLISHED.

·       The FDP administrator who reviews the profile sends an e-mail to the Authorized Profile Certifier verifying that it has been approved. 

 

The end goal is to have a completed, certified, published Profile – all entered within and accessible through the web-based Expanded Clearinghouse System. 

3.   Getting started

3.1      Compatible systems/web browsers

The system is built to function on PCs or Macs and works with the most common internet browsers.  Note that the file upload tool will not work in Internet Explorer 9 or earlier versions of IE.  If a user is using an out of date browser, a warning message will appear. 

 

3.2      Helpful to know

Before completing the Profile online, a user should have a completed Organizational Data Worksheet.  Having a completed worksheet ensures that data are readily available for entry into the system.

If possible, having access to a workstation with two monitors would be helpful.  One monitor could display the completed Organizational Data Worksheet, while the other monitor could display the FDP Web-based Expanded Clearinghouse System.

3.3      Getting access to the System

3.3.1      Where to find it

The FDP Expanded Clearinghouse is located at: fdpclearinghouse.org.  Participating organizations must have a user set up in the system in order to create, edit, certify, or submit a profile.   See below on how to become a user.

 

3.3.2      How to become a user

The System Administration team will set up an Organizational Owner for each participating organization.  After the Organizational Owner creates the Profile, the Owner is able to create other users for their organization.  The organization must have at least one Organizational Owner to be able to access the FDP Expanded Clearinghouse System.  For assistance, email fdpechelp@gmail.com.

 

3.3.3      Dual user roles

An individual may be both a Profile Editor and Authorized Profile Certifier for their organization.  If you act as both the Profile Editor and Authorized Profile Certifier, you do not need to add yourself as a user twice with two separate roles.  You would simply check two separate permission boxes for Profile Editor and Certifier.

 

3.3.4      Difference between Users and Contacts

An organization’s Users are those responsible for creating, editing, and certifying the organization’s profile in the FDP Expanded Clearinghouse System.  The Organizational Owner or the User Manager enters and edits information about Users through the Manage Users button.  User accounts include Organizational Owner, User Manager, Profile Editor, and Authorized Profile Certifier.

 

An organization’s Contacts perform a function separate from Users and independent of the System.  The Contacts are individuals to whom questions about certain topics related to the organization may be addressed.  For example, if a pass-through entity has a question about an organization’s audit finding, the PTE can reach out to the Audit Contact.  Information about the Contacts (with the exception of the Authorized Profile Certifier) is entered and edited on the Contacts tab of the Profile.  Either the Organizational Owner or the Profile Editor can enter or edit an organization’s Contacts.    

 

To summarize, Users play specific roles related to the management of an organization’s Profile in the FDP Expanded Clearinghouse System, whereas Contacts play roles related to an organization.  There may be overlap, that is, an organization’s Users may also act as Contacts for specific topics. 

 

3.4      Responsibilities of the Organizational Owner

The Organizational Owner is the first user created by system administrators and serves as the organization’s “super user.”  The Organizational Owner is responsible for:

1)     creating a profile for the organization and

2)     creating accounts for other organizational users, as well as granting them appropriate permission(s).

For a full list of users and permissions, see Appendix A.

3.5      Creating a profile

On the menu bar near the top of the screen, click on “Add Organization.”

Clicking on “Add Organization” will bring up a screen with three data elements:

·       Legal Entity Name

o   This is the legal name associated with the DUNS number and can be found in SAM.gov.

·       Common Name

o   This name is visible/searchable on the page that lists all participating organizations.  It can be different than or the same as the Legal Entity Name. 

·       Employer Identification Number (EIN)

·       DUNS Number

After entering the three pieces of information, click on “Save.” 

Clicking on “Save” will create a Profile and bring up a new screen, which is the Profile in Edit Mode.  In Edit Mode, information can be entered into the Profile. 

3.6      User management

3.6.1      Adding other users for your organization

Either the Organizational Owner or the User Manager can create other users and designate a user to be the Authorized Profile Certifier.  User accounts include the User Manager, Profile Editor, and Authorized Profile Certifier.

 

·       The first step to creating a new user is to log into the System.  The, click on “My Dashboard” in the menu bar. 

 

 

·       In “My Dashboard”, click on the name of your organization under “My Organizations” on the left side of the screen.  This will bring you to a new screen with the name of your organization. 

 

·       To create a new user for your organization, click on “Manage Users” on the right side of the screen.

 

 

·       This will bring up a new screen, where you will click on the button “Add User” that appears on the right side of the screen. 

 

 

·       Clicking on “Add User” will bring up a new screen, where you will be prompted to enter the e-mail address of the new user.  Enter the e-mail address of the new user and click “Next” within the “Add User” box. 

 

 

·       Clicking on “Next” within the “Add User” box will bring up a new screen, where you will be prompted to:

1) enter the user’s first name, last name, and title, and

2) click on the permissions associated with the user.

 

 

 

·       For the organization’s users, the organization may also choose to enter a Display Email address.  This option is available because many offices use generic central e-mail addresses to receive correspondence (e.g., preaward@university.edu).  If a Display Email is entered for the Primary Contact, the Display E-mail will appear to the public in lieu of the Unique Account mail.  For the Authorized Profile Certifier, the Unique Account Email will appear in the published profile.  

·       Clicking on “Save” will send an e-mail to the individual to activate their account.

·       If someone is entered as an “Authorized Profile Certifier” in the Users tab, their name and contact information will automatically appear as the “Authorized Profile Certifier” in the Contacts tab.

 

3.6.2      Removing users for your organization

To remove an individual as a user for your organization, click on the Manage Users button.  You will see a list of users for your organization.  On the right side of the screen, there is a Remove link:

Click on the Remove link, and a new option will appear:

        

Clicking on the Remove button will remove the user from the FDP EC system.  If the individual is also listed as a Contact, you will have to go to the Contacts tab to change the Contact for your organization.

3.7      Navigation

3.7.1      Logging in

Go to fdpclearinghouse.org.  Enter your e-mail address and password.  If this is your first time logging into the system, you will be prompted to reset your password after you click “Login.” 

 

3.7.2      Organization of information

After you have logged in, the menu bar near the top of the screen will look like this:

 

 

To go to your organization’s profile, click on “My Dashboard.”  This will bring up a new screen with the name of your organization on the left side of the screen under “My Organizations.” 

 

Click on the name of your organization, which will bring up your organization’s profile.  Click on the “Open Draft” button to view the profile.

 

On the main part of the screen, the Profile is organized by tabs.  The tabs appear in the following order:

 

 

3.7.3      Editing the profile

As described in 3.7.2, an organization’s profile is accessed through My Dashboard, and then clicking on the organization’s name.  To edit the profile, click on “Open Draft.” 

When editing the profile, the area outside the profile is dark, and the data fields are editable.  You will know that you are editing because you’ll see the “Editing” bar near the top of the screen:

3.7.4      Data entry order

The data need not be entered in the same order in which the tabs appear.  The user may choose to enter information by following the order in which the tabs appear, or the user may enter information in any order they choose.   

3.7.5      Entering Contacts

On the Contacts tab is a list of types of contacts for the organization.  To enter a type of contact, click on the “Add” button on the right side of the screen.  You will be prompted to enter an e-mail address for the contact.  Click on “Next.”  If the contact is new to the System, you will need to enter their first name, last name, and title.  If the contact has previously been added to the System, their first name, last name, and title will automatically appear. 

For each Contact, an Optional Display Email may be entered: 

This option is available because many offices use generic central e-mail addresses to receive correspondence (e.g., preaward@university.edu).  After entering First Name, Last Name, Title, and, if applicable, Optional Display Email, click on “Save Contact.” 

Be aware that entering someone in the Contacts tab does not create an automatic “User” account for the contact.  Users are entered separately, through the “Manage Users” button.

3.7.6      Saving information

After an individual data field is completed, you can hit the Tab or Enter key on your keyboard to move to the next field.  You will notice that a green “Saved” button appears, indicating that the information has been saved.  Information is automatically saved as each field is completed. 

 

When all data fields on a given tab are complete, you can click on “Next” at the bottom of the page to move to the next tab. 

4.   Completing a Profile

4.1      Entering information into the profile

After the profile has been created, the profile editor should navigate through each tab and enter the required information.  Information is entered in one of several different ways:

·       Typed in

·       Selected from a dropdown list

·       Copied and pasted, e.g., hyperlink

·       Attached

4.1.1      Formatting of information

In Edit Mode, help text is often included below the name of the data field.  For example, for Congressional District, the help text indicates, “Sample format: WA-007. Can be found in SAM.” 

In some cases, the data field itself shows the format in which to enter the information.  For instance, for Congressional District, the data field indicates “_ _-_ _ _” to show that two letters, a dash, and three numbers should be entered. 

If a piece of information normally contains dashes (for example, EIN), the user does not need to enter the dash.  The user only needs to type in the numbers, and the information will automatically conform to the prescribed format.  

4.1.2      Primary data elements

Several data elements are preceded by “Primary,” such as NAICS Code and PHS/OLAW Assurance Number.  For data elements preceded by “Primary,” organizations should enter the information used most of the time.  If an organization has more than one possible response, enter the information used most often in the “Primary” data field, and use the Comments box to add other important information:

If the Comments box is used to enter additional information, be sure to include a reference to the data element above.  For instance, if an organization were to enter other NAICS codes, the Comments box should read, “Other NAICS Codes include: 541711, 541712.”

4.1.3      Approval and expiration dates

Any approval or expiration dates will be checked by the system to ensure that they are appropriate.  Approval dates should be in the past; if a future approval date is entered, a warning message will appear:

Expiration dates should be in the future; if an expiration date in the past is entered, a warning message will appear:

 

As an expiration date approaches, the system will send an e-mail to the organization’s primary contact.  The e-mails notify the organization of an expiration date that is 60 or 30 days in the future.  The e-mails are meant to prompt the organization to update the date in the FDP EC system.  

When an expiration date has passed, if the organization has not yet updated the date in the system, “EXPIRED” will display next to the expired date.  “EXPIRED” will be removed after the organization has updated the date, and the revised profile has been published by the Admin User. 

4.1.4      Data validation

Where possible, individual data fields indicate the format in which information should be entered.  If information does not conform to the format, or if information is missing, the user will not be able to submit the profile to the Authorized Profile Certifier.  All fields must either have information entered/selected or have Not Applicable selected as a response. 

Any errors will appear on the Authorization tab:

If any responses are changed, the “Revalidate” button is available on the Authorizations tab. 

4.2      Use of "Comments"

On the General Information, Registrations & IDs, Certifications, Audits, and Assurances tabs, an optional “Comments” box appears where a Profile Editor can type in relevant information about any data element on that field.

If any information provided by the organization warrants further explanation, the Comments box is where this explanation should be entered.   Examples of comments have included topics such as: the annual audit is running late and will be updated as soon as possible; the organization has multiple NAICS or FWA codes; or the findings in the audit pertain only to the financial aid area.  These comments will be viewable to anyone viewing the Profile.

5.   Submitting/certifying a Profile

5.1      Submitting a Profile

After the Profile is complete, the user will go to the Authorizations tab.  On the Authorizations tab, after ensuring that any errors have been addressed (see 4.1.3 Data Validation), the user will click the button “Submit for Certification.” 

 

 

 

Clicking on this button will send an e-mail to the Authorized Profile Certifier that the profile is ready to be reviewed.  The profile status at this point is SUBMITTED.

 

5.2      Certifying a Profile

The  Authorized Profile Certifier should log into the system.  If the Certifier hasn’t already done so, they will need to activate their account by going into the system and resetting their password.  The Certifier should navigate through the tabs and ensure that all of the information is accurate. 

 

If all is acceptable, the Certifier should go to the Authorization tab.  A copy of the Business Use Agreement will appear, and at the bottom, the Certifier indicates agreement with the expectations outlined. 

 

 

The Certifier should click on “Accept and Continue.”  Once the “Accept and Continue” button has been pushed, a new screen will appear. 

 

Clicking on “Submit to FDP” will send a message to the FDP Administrators that the profile is ready for their review. 

 

5.3      Publishing a Profile

The FDP Administrators will go into the certified profile and validate the data (e.g., ensure that hyperlinks and attachments are working properly; also see section 2.1).  Once they have confirmed that everything is working as it should, they will publish the profile, which will change its status in the System to PUBLISHED.  At that point, the profile will be publicly available on fdpclearinghouse.org/ under the “Participating Organizations” section

 

5.4      Rejecting a Profile

If the Certifier discovers that any data should be revised, the Certifier has the option to reject the profile.  The Certifier can click on “Accept and Continue.”  Doing so brings up a new screen:

 

 

 

If the Certifier rejects the profile, it will be put back into DRAFT status, and an e-mail notification will be sent to the Profile Editor.

 

5.5      Retracting a Profile

If the Profile has been submitted to the Certifier, but not yet certified, the Profile Editor can retract the Profile for further editing.  They do this by navigating to the Authorization tab and selecting “Retract for editing”.  When they do this, an email notification will be sent to the Authorized Profile Certifier.  The Profile Editor can then make any necessary updates or changes and resubmit the Profile to the Authorized Profile Certifier.

If the Profile has already been submitted to FDP, only the Authorized Profile Certifier can “Retract for editing”.  Once they do this, then the Profile Editor can “Retract for editing” to allow them to edit further and then move back through submit and certify process.  This “Retract for editing” process essentially works backwards of the normal workflow process to submit, certify and approve.  This also includes the Authorized Profile Certifier having to agree to the Terms again to move back through the process.

6.   Updating information in the System

After the profile has been published, periodic updates will be needed to ensure that information is current.  An Organizational Owner or Profile Editor should go into the system to revise the relevant information.  To do so, the user will log into the system and select that published Profile under the “My Dashboard” tab to open a new draft of the profile.  (Note that the existing published profile remains visible as is until the new draft is approved.)  After updating the information, the user will submit the profile to the Authorized Profile Certifier.  The Authorized Profile Certifier will need to recertify the profile, and then the FDP Administrator will have to validate and publish the profile.  When the new draft is approved by the FDP Administrator, it will replace the previously published version. 

7.   Deleting a Profile

The user may delete profiles that have not been submitted for review.  To delete a profile, go to My Dashboard and click on the profile to be deleted.  A new screen will appear that includes a “Delete” button in the top right corner:

       

 

Clicking on the “Delete” button will bring up a new screen:   

Clicking on Yes will permanently delete the profile, and it will not be retrievable.

If, for some reason, you wish to delete a profile that was previously submitted for review, please contact fdpechelp@gmail.com

8.   Where to go for help

For assistance, email fdpechelp@gmail.com.

 

Helpful tip: If you are having trouble or getting errors, hit Ctrl +F5 to refresh your browser.  That may resolve some issues.  If that does not work, send a message to fdpechelp@gmail.com.

9.   Accessing information in the system

Any member of the general public can view information in the FDP Expanded Clearinghouse. 

9.1      Searching for information

Go to fdpclearinghouse.org and click on “Participating Organizations” in the menu bar.  An individual can search by the organization name or the DUNS number.  Partial names may be used, e.g., Duke in lieu of Duke University.  When the desired profile appears, click on the name of the organization to access their profile.  Users may also sort by Organization (Common) Name, Primary DUNS, Primary Contact, or date Last Published.

9.2      Printing information

When viewing the profile, a “Print|PDF” button appears near the top right corner of the screen.  Clicking on the button will allow the user to print a copy of the profile in full, either to a printer or to a PDF document. 


 

Appendix A

Type of Organization Users and Associated Permissions

Organizational Owner (Organization “super user”)

·       Profile Point of Contact will be the primary organization user responsible for creating organization Profile.

·       Primary organization user responsible for creating user accounts (User Manager, Profile Editor, Authorized Profile Certifier) and granting appropriate permissions.

·       Can edit Profile.

·       Cannot certify the Profile, unless also granting the Authorized Profile Certifier role to them self.

 

User Manager

·       User role created/granted by Organizational Owner.

·       Creates new users for the organization.

·       Cannot edit profile.

·       Cannot certify profile.

 

Profile Editor

·       User role created/granted by Organization Owner or User Manager.

·       Can edit Profile.

·       Cannot create new users.

·       Cannot certify Profile.

 

Authorized Profile Certifier

·       User role created/granted by Organization Owner or User Manager.

·       Can certify and submit the Profile to FDP.

·       Cannot edit Profile.

·       Cannot create new users.

 

Permissions authorized for each type of user

Organization Owner: Creates profile; creates user accounts and grants permissions; can edit profile; can submit to Authorized Profile Certifier.

User Manager: Add/remove/edit organization users.

Profile Editor: Edit organization profile; can submit to Authorized Profile Certifier.

Authorized Profile Certifier: Certifies organization profile to FDP.

 


 

Appendix B

Type of Contact and Definitions

 

Primary Contact:  Individual who is the point of contact for the organization related to the organization’s profile in the FDP Expanded Clearinghouse. 

Authorized Profile Certifier:  Individual that is authorized to certify the accuracy and completeness of the Organization Profile information for the Organization and who will be organizationally responsible for any inaccurate data as well as ensuring that the terms in the Business Use Agreement are adhered to.

 

Primary Authorized Signing Official:  Individual designated by the organization as their primary signing official for proposals and awards, thereby binding the organization.  Often this role is held by the head of the sponsored projects office.

 

SAM Point of Contact:  SAM Government Business POC

 

Financial Officer:  Individual at the organization who is the primary point of contact for financial matters related to sponsored programs.

 

F&A Cost Rate Negotiation:  Individual at the organization who is the primary point of contact for responding to questions regarding the facilities & administrative rate agreement.

 

Audit Contact:  Individual at the organization who is the primary point of contact for responding to questions regarding organizational audits.

 

FFATA Contact:  Individual at the organization who is the primary point of contact for responding to questions regarding FFATA reporting.