ADVICE FOR PREPARING THE REQUIRED COSTING ADVICE FOR PREPARING THE REQUIRED COSTING

The University requires that the ‘full economic cost’ of all applications is calculated. The completed costing forms part of the University’s application process and must be authorised by the School and the University alongside the application. Your Project Officer will be able to advise and prepare the required costing.

It is important to work with RIN to prepare a draft budget for your application as early as possible so that any relevant issues can be raised with your Head of School.

Cost vs price   |   Salary costs   |   Non-staff costs

 

Cost vs price

The figures entered on the application form may be different to the costs identified by RIN. This could be for a number of reasons but usually revolves around what costs a funder will or will not support.
  • The Research Councils generally fund 80% of the Full Economic Cost (FEC) of a project - with some exceptions. The individual scheme guidance notes from will give details and your Project Officer can advise.
  • Most charities will only allow the inclusion of ‘direct cost’ figures as the price for the project, although some certain schemes will support other aspects of the FEC.
  • EU Horizon 2020 projects currently pay 100% of eligible direct project costs and 25% overhead costs.

Other costing and pricing differences may occur because of internal strategic issues, e.g. pricing for competitive tenders, where advice must be sought from your Project Officer and Head of School before determining the price.
 

Salary costs

All staff involved with the project who already have long-term employment contracts at UEA will need to agree an estimate of their commitment to the project, e.g. in terms of hours per week on average. This will be translated into a project cost, but will not necessarily be paid for by the research grant. In FEC terms these costs are defined as 'Directly Allocated' staff costs.

Some posts may be required specifically for the project, such as Postdoctoral Research Associates, some technicians and other posts. These are ‘Directly Incurred' staff costs. Your Project Officer will be able to advise on appropriate starting salaries, as part of the overall project costing.

Technicians who are already on long-term contracts with the University, and who work on multiple projects, can be included as a Directly Incurred cost. However, be aware that these staff will need to complete time-sheets, so that their salary can be accurately charged to the project.
 

Non-staff costs

Travel

Do ensure that the travel budget is sufficient for journeys to gather data and hold project meetings. Note that:
i) UEA has a set car mileage rate that must be used.
ii) For train journeys check that money has been included for taxi fares, parking etc.
iii) For air fares check that airport tax has been included. 
 

Subsistence

Ensure this is provided for where necessary – unless specific costs are to be met, staff are advised to use the rates laid down from time to time by the most relevant Research Council. Again, your Project Officer will be able to advise. 
 

Consumables

These need to be in line with the principles of FEC and need to be sufficient for the needs of the project including, e.g., laboratory materials and office costs associated with the project. Specific funder guidelines will stipulate whether computer/office consumables will need to be separated or included. 
 

Equipment

Only equipment relevant to the project can be included, i.e. dedicated computers, printer, tape recorder, laboratory equipment. Your Faculty’s Finance Office will be able to advise on UEA procedures for the purchasing of equipment. For large pieces of equipment please refer to the Purchasing Office.
 

Special facilities

A number of shared laboratories and other facilities have been identified, and cost rates for these are determined annually. Instead of including all of these in our estates rates, they are allocated to individual projects as appropriate. Your Project Officer can provide advice if you need to include special facilities in your project costing.
 

Other costs

Data fees, disseminations, engagement activities, data collection instruments, clerical/administrative support, participant expenses, specialist consultants, subcontractors etc.