The federal government requires that the effort (or amount of time) devoted to a sponsored project be appropriately documented.
Any employee—faculty or staff—who is compensated by or who has agreed to contribute to the sponsored project must document his or her time in an effort report. These effort reports catalog the amount of time expended on any activity related to the research project, expressed as a percentage of the employee’s total professional duties
Principal investigators or their fiscal officers are also required to submit semiannual certification that the salaries charged are reasonable in relation to the effort dedicated to those projects.
Please note that some grant awards may require a recertification of effort more often than university policy dictates. If this is the case, follow the more restrictive language of the grant award.
Guidelines, procedures , and responsibilities for filing OMB A-21 effort reports.