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Research Operations Office


Creating a grant application and getting it checked and approved takes time.

To meet the funder submission deadline you need to give everyone involved enough time to check and approve your application. If you don’t, your application may not be submitted to the funder on time.

You need to send applications with a £250k or more full economic cost (fEC) to ROO at least 5 or 7 working days before the funder submission deadline. We need this time to ensure that the funding body has all the information to make a decision about your grant application.

Late applications will not be submitted to the funder.


Changes to the research grant application deadlines

The Research Policy Committee (RPC) has changed the deadlines for sending research grant applications to the Research Operations Office (ROO). This is to manage the financial risk to the University.

  • A single deadline of 5 working days (was 3) prior to the funder submission deadline for all standard applications and open calls.
  • A 2-stage (pre-check) service available until 7 working days (was 5) prior to the funder submission deadline which will provide all financial checks and allow changes to the non-financial aspects of the proposals until 24 hours before the funder submission deadline.
  • Raising the threshold for small applications to £250k fEC (was £150k fEC)

Applications sent to ROO after the deadlines will not be submitted to the funder unless:

  • approved by the relevant Head of Department (HoD) with a genuine reason for late submission
  • acknowledgement that the Department will accept the risk posed by any errors or omissions in the submission


Before you submit your application

1. Check the funder’s guidance notes and make sure you're eligible for the scheme you’re applying to.

2. Calculate the full economic cost (fEC) using the X5 costing tool.

3. Get your application checked and approved by your department – this will usually be by the Departmental Administrator (DA). Check with your department how much time they need to do this.

4. Get your application approved by the Head of Department (HoD)

5. Send your application to the Research Operations Office (ROO) to be checked and submitted, allowing enough time (either 7 or 5 working days) for us to carry out the checks before the funder submission deadline.

Your application doesn't need to be checked by ROO if it's under £250k fEC, and has no exceptions. You must send it to ROO at least 1 working day before the funder submission deadline. We won't check the application but will submit it to the funder.

Exceptions would be:

  • new funder
  • overseas funder
  • subcontracting or collaborations
  • ethical issues or special insurance
  • UK government funding or tender
  • restricted call
  • funder requires ROO to check


Checks by a department

Make sure you’ve:

  1. Followed sponsor guidelines, including font size and other formatting requests.
  2. Checked applicants will be in post for the duration of the project, and can apply – for example, if the PI is due to retire this could affect eligibility.
  3. Used the University’s exchange rates if relevant.
  4. Followed VAT rules.
  5. Covered direct costs (includes pooled labour, SRFs, MRFs and exceptional items).
  6. Included eligible costs.
  7. Submitted the X5 costing to ROO.


Checks by ROO

2-stage checks (previously known as pre-checks), take ROO 7 working days to complete.

1-stage checks take ROO 5 working days to complete.

2-stage checks

We'll review the financial parts of your application whilst the PI can continue to work on the academic case and any other non-financial elements.

Send us:

1.    7 working days or more before the funder submission deadline - your application-in-process.

As a minimum this is:

  • the X5 costing
  • the justification of resources (JoR)
  • budget tables

2.    1 working day or more before the funder submission deadline - your full and finalised application (including the academic case).

1-stage checks

We’ll check your whole application in one go.

Send us:

1.    5 working days or more before the funder submission deadline - your full and finalised application.


When to send your application to ROO

Find out when to send your application to ROO.


  • you need to consider the time your department first needs to check and approve your application
  • for collaborations where you're not the lead, your application should be sent to ROO 7 or 5 working days before the partner deadline
  • for open calls where your application is to be submitted for a panel meeting, your application should be sent to ROO 7 or 5 working days before this date


Sending a late application to ROO

As a minimum, you need to send all applications over £250k fEC to the ROO at least 5 working days before the funder submission deadline. Late applications will not be submitted to the funder.

We’ll only accept applications with less than 5 working days before the funder submission deadline when:

  • the HoD agrees that the department will accept liability and risks, including any shortfall in funding if the application is awarded
  • ROO will not carry out any checks


How to request ROO to accept a late application

The HoD or deputised HoD if absent can use this example:


Dear [Name]

As Head of Department for [History], I [Professor Joe Bloggs] am aware that the Principal Investigator listed below has submitted a grant application after the Research Operations Office (ROO) deadline.  

The application details:

  • PI Name:
  • Project title:
  • Funder:
  • Start Date:
  • X5 ID:
  • fEC cost:
  • Grant number:
  • Collaborators (if applicable):  
  • Reason for late application:

I acknowledge that although this application is late, I would like it to be submitted to the funder, and understand that the ROO will do this without undertaking any checks.

I further acknowledge and accept that any errors or omissions in the application will be the responsibility of the Department which shall bear any costs or consequences arising from such.

Yours sincerely,



Research support letters

Funders may ask you to submit a support letter signed by the Pro-Vice Chancellor of Research with your application.

You need to request the support letter 15 working days before the funder submission deadline.


Restricted calls for funding

These are where the funder requires the University to coordinate and/or preselect which applications are submitted.

Typically this happens when the number of applications an institution can submit or the number of awards the funder can make is limited.

Check the current restricted calls deadlines.


Submitting the application to a funder

Online submissions and X5 costings

We’ll submit the checked application to the funder and notify you when this happens.


Research Councils

We’ll submit the grant application to the relevant research council in Je-S (Joint Electronic Submission System).


When funders make a decision

When you’re notified of the result of an application please tell the Research Support Advisor in your school team as not all funders inform us of the outcome of applications. 


If your application is successful

If the grant offered meets the costs on the X5, we’ll assume you’re happy to proceed with the research. We’ll accept the award and activate the grant.

If the amount is significantly different then we’ll contact you and the HoD before activating the grant or accepting the award.


If your application is unsuccessful

We’ll keep the file until either we’ve been told that it’s been unsuccessful or for 12 months.

If your application is unsuccessful we will:

  • change the X5 ‘funder decision status’ to ‘project rejected’

  • keep the application for 3 months before destroying it unless the department requests otherwise

  • email the department to tell them if an application is due to be destroyed