Each year, the top New Year’s resolutions involve getting rid of bad habits and adopting good habits. Grant management is no different.
We all want to have a healthier relationship with our Funding Agency, lose the weight of grant mis-management that’s dragging us down and quit being in denial about our internal controls being strong when we don’t actually do anything to make them that way.
1/3 Federal Grants Have Audit Findings
Would it shock you to know that 1 in 3 federal grant recipients have audit findings?
A couple years ago we analyzed over 1000 A-133 audit results and found that having reportable conditions with a federal grant or sponsored agreement is more common than you may have realized.
What Happens When There Are Audit Findings?
A corrective action plan is generally the next step after the auditors tell you there are findings on the A-133 audit.
Think of a corrective action plan as a “New Year’s resolution” for your federal grant.
- How are you going to get rid of the bad habits that occurred?
- How will you implement good habits going forward?
Three Steps to Make a Corrective Action Plan Successful
Just like sticking to a New Year’s resolution, the key to making a corrective action plan successful involves the following three steps:
Set Reasonable Goals:
The issues that caused the negative report probably didn’t happen overnight, similarly the solutions will involve time to put new systems in place, and train employees on the new expectations or new ways of managing your grants.
Design a Schedule to Achieve Goals:
The corrective action plan is the beginning, not the end. Achieving the desired results involves a schedule of activities designed to make the goal happen. These activities should be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely.
Monitoring is the “stepping on the scale” moment. If you don’t monitor the results of your corrective action plan, you won’t know if you are meeting your goals.
- Is the grant management now in compliance?
- Are there any unintended consequences as a result of the corrective action plan?
- Do adjustments need to be made to the plan?
Monitoring is how you keep from having the same problem surface when the next year’s audit rolls around.
Need To Write a Corrective Action Plan for a Federal Grant?
Trying to make 2013 a better year for grant management? As the New Year starts, we thought this would be a good time to re-visit an “oldie, but goodie” on How to write a corrective action plan.
Lucy Morgan CPA, MBA
CEO, Compliance Warrior