Contracts Specialist

The Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) at Virginia Tech provides stewardship of the university’s research portfolio and its staff is responsible for providing a comprehensive array of support services for faculty and staff as they pursue and manage externally funded projects, and is a critical unit within the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation (OVPRI). The mission of OVPRI is to support university-wide strategic initiatives and operational functions of Virginia Tech’s $520+ million research enterprise and associated technology commercialization activities, which span eight academic colleges, eight university research institutes, and three affiliated corporations. The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) is one of six research institutes created by Virginia Tech with a mission to advance transportation through innovation and influencing public policy on national and international levels. The university is embarking on its next phase of strategic growth in research across its Blacksburg, Roanoke, and Northern Virginia locations. With the continual growth in grant and contract support research programs, the Contract Specialist is a key position in supporting the ambitious plans for Virginia Tech to be a leading 21st century land grant university that delivers innovative solutions to the most pressing global challenges of our time.

The Contract Specialist will be an integral part of a dedicated team of professionals working to assure the contractual obligations for sponsored programs align with federal, state, and university regulations and the sponsor’s requirements. The Contract Specialist will facilitate the contracting process from start to completion including preparing the negotiation evaluation, obtaining departmental approval, developing term conditions, tracking pending sponsored awards, compliance review, and contract execution, with a primary focus on VTTI contracts.

The Contract Specialist reports directly to the Contract Specialist Team Lead within OSP. The Contract Specialist also has a dotted reporting line to the Applied Contracts Manager within VTTI. The Applied Contracts Manager will identify and prioritize tasks for the Contracts Specialist to expedite the contracting process for VTTI.

Duties and Responsibilities:
• Exhibits high level of customer service orientation and willingness to ensure successful interdepartmental and external relationships.
• Facilitates contracts, awards, and other funded and non-funded agreements processing and entry into the Agreements Tracking System.
• Reviews and verify submitted contractual documents and proposals to identify and initiate sub-tasks for regulatory compliance, intellectual property, financial and legal reviews to be executed concurrently by multiple stakeholders and subject matter experts within Virginia Tech to ensure maximum efficiency.
• Corresponds directly with Principal Investigators, Office of Sponsored Programs personnel and other internal and external stakeholders and provides outstanding, proactive support for project-related inquires and/or needs.
• Provides coverage and back up administrative support to Contract Negotiators.
• Executes the day-to-day activities of the contract and awards processing activities to include data integrating of electronic systems and supporting personnel.
• Drafts, compiles and completes various forms, notices, certifications, and other communication, which may require submission for approval, posting or publication.
• Maintains customer confidence and protects operations by keeping sensitive information confidential.
• Conducts regular data integrity reviews and resolves discrepancies between contract and system data.
• Deliver ad-hoc reporting and analysis for various supporting documents
• Anticipates the needs of key stakeholders throughout the entire contract negotiation process and proactively seeks to address the needs of internal and external customers based upon keen understanding of processes and procedures.
• Ensures compliance with departmental operations and federal, state and sponsor regulations.
• Sharply focuses on continuous improvement of processes and procedures to ensure maximum effectiveness throughout the contract negotiation and with changing business needs. Communicates suggestions for increased efficiencies to senior leadership.

Required Qualifications

• Bachelor’s degree, or equivalent level of training and professional experience.
• Demonstrated professional level administrative support and/or customer service experience.
• Strong computer skills including word processing, spreadsheet applications, and email clients.
• Ability to synthesize and interpret applicable federal, state, corporate, university or private regulations, or comparable legal/regulatory program experience to ensure compliance.
• Demonstrated attention to detail, analytical and problem solving skills, with the ability to notice and correct errors and inconsistencies.
• Excellent communication and organizational skills
• Ability to prioritize large volumes of work and manage multiple tasks while ensuring deadlines are met.

Preferred Qualifications

• Demonstrated experience in contract administration and familiarity with state and federal regulations and guidelines related to research administration.
• Previous experience providing programmatic support in a professional office environment.
• Experience in handling complex and confidential material.
• Knowledge of university administrative and/or accounting practices and procedures.

To Apply

For more information about this position and how to apply, please visit and search for posting 516008.

Virginia Tech is an equal opportunity/affirmative action institution.

Contact Information

Virginia Tech



NEC, Suite 4200
300 Turner Street NE
Blacksburg, VA 24061


Background Information

4-Year Degree

  • College/University
  • Grants and Contracts
  • Sponsored Projects/Programs
  • Other


Target Job Information


  • Full Time