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Effort Reporting

As a recipient of significant external funding, Northwestern must assure Federal and other sponsors that the assignment of time and associated salary and fringe benefit costs to the projects they sponsor is fair, consistent, and timely. The University fulfills this responsibility through Effort Reporting. Effort Reporting is required for exempt faculty and staff with sponsored funding or commitments.

Accessing Effort Reporting System and Related Policies & Procedures

References and Templates

Use your Northwestern NetID and password to access the Effort Reporting References and Templates.

Quick Start Guide and Training


If you have never used the online Effort Reporting System or you are not familiar with the Compensation for Personal Services Federal requirements (fulfilled by Effort Reporting), we strongly recommend reviewing Basics of Effort Reporting and the Certifier’s Job Aid to get started. If you would like to receive one-on-one assistance, please contact Jennifer Mitchell (  We are happy to provide individual support.



The Office of Cost Studies provides quarterly Effort Reporting policies and procedures, and system navigation trainings. The Effort 101 (Introduction to Effort Reporting) is mandatory for administrators who require access to the Effort Reporting System (ERS) and manage Effort reports. If you have questions regarding the training, please contact your Effort Coordinator or Jennifer Mitchell ( We are happy to provide further assistance.