Research Administrator

University of Southern California (USC)

Los Angeles, CA


Research Administrator


The Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy is looking for a talented and experienced Research Administrator who can manage pre- and post-award sponsored research activity. We are seeking a dedicated professional with exceptional multi-tasking skills who can collaborate well with faculty and staff, support the development and submission of new proposals, complete post award activities, and is able to oversee a diverse portfolio.  This position is primarily an in-person position.


Job Summary:

The Research Administrator plays a central and critical role in assisting principal investigators with preparation and submission of research proposals and with management of post-award administration. 


Job Accountabilities: 

• Prepares complex proposals within parameters of sponsored and non-sponsored research guidelines in collaboration with faculty members. Oversees and communicates submission process, both paper and electronic. Resolves issues relating to proposal preparation and submittal process.

• Develops, prepares, revises, and finalizes project budgets, and provides budget justification

• Management of post-award expenditures, setting up advance funding, cost-sharing, and sub-contracts.  Preparation of progress reports, processing of effort certifications, account reconciliation, and preparation of budget forecasts and account status reports.

• Prepares ad hoc reports as needed for university reports regarding the division's total research portfolio.

• Collaborates with Office of Sponsored Research to ensure awards are set up properly, including cost-sharing requirements are fulfilled.

• Reviews and approves expenditures.

• Develops and communicates reports supporting project status. Manages contract closeout process and audits inquiries.

• Serves as a Subject Matter Expert (SME) / Interprets complex University and government policies. Identifies and implements process improvements.

• May negotiate and communicate with federal and state sponsors, industry sponsors, other institutions, and/or University schools or divisions in regard to application issues.

• Tasked with ensuring compliance with all research policies and procedures including IRB, intellectual property, disclosures, etc.

• Position advises faculty on proposal submission timelines, policy changes, and funding opportunities and announcements, as well as serves as a liaison between principal investigators and USC Sponsored Projects Accounting, the Office of Contracts and Grants, and sponsoring agencies.

• Maintains currency on changes within legal, regulatory, competitive economic and technology environments which may affect specialized programs.

• Keeps payroll manager informed of employee effort on sponsored projects, monitors grant payroll transactions and initiates payroll expense transfers when needed.


Minimum Qualifications include: 

• Bachelor’s degree and previous experience in research administration, including:  proposal preparation and submission, budget forecasting, report writing, budget justifications, tracking of expenditures including payroll expenses, preparation of effort certification reports.

• Excellent oral and written communication skills, ability to understand, interpret, and communicate University policies and procedures.  Proficiency in Excel and web-based tools, Adobe DC, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Outlook, SP Cayuse, VPN, Workday Financials, Secure CRT, CAFÉ, and Zoom.  Must be able to multi-task and have excellent organization skills in order to prioritize workload. 


Preferred Qualifications include: 

• Master’s degree and a minimum of 7 years’ experience. 


*Please upload cover letter and resume to be considered*


USC has excellent benefits, including health benefits for staff & their family with access to the renowned university medical network; eligibility for retirement plans; tuition benefits for staff & their family; free professional development online courses; central Los Angeles location with easy access to commuter trains, buses & free tram pick up services; discounts to football, basketball & other campus events. To view more information, please visit:


Minimum Education:

• Bachelor's Degree

• Combined experience/education as substitute for minimum education 


Minimum Experience: 

• 5 Years


Minimum Field of Experience: 

• Expert knowledge and fluency of governmental regulations (e.g. FAR, A-21, A-110, A-133, CAS). Knowledge and ability to understand, interpret, and communicate University policies and procedures. Excellent oral, written, and communication skills. Excellent analytical skills; demonstrated proficiency in Excel and web-based tools. Strong accounting skills; knowledge of accounting principles. Expert in project management, including managing international collaborations and complex multi-sub award contracts. Knowledge of personnel management, including proposing effort for and training and hiring of students, post-doctorals, academic appointments, regular staff, bargaining unit staff, and consultants, along with the circumstances appropriate for each type of position.


Apply Online:


The University of Southern California values diversity and is committed to equal opportunity in employment.

Contact Information

University of Southern California (USC)



, 90007

(213) 740-2311

Background Information



  • College/University
  • Research Administrator/Manager


Target Job Information

Not Specif

  • Full Time