Proposal Submission

Sponsored Project Lifecycle – Step 1

Using Cayuse SP: Proposal Routing and Approvals

Cayuse Icon

Select the Cayuse logo and enter your NAU User ID and Central Authentication Service (CAS) password.
Download the Cayuse SP manual for step-by-step instructions on how to submit a proposal for internal routing and approvals.


Cayuse 424 has been used since 2011 for proposal submissions. Cayuse SP (Sponsored Projects) builds on and is integrated with Cayuse 424 to provide pre-award and non-financial post-award sponsored projects administration.

Cayuse SP provides a single point of entry for proposal data and any documents that are required for internal review. 

Cayuse SP is the repository for institutional proposal and award data, with nearly twenty-five years of legacy data now available to NAU users. This extensive data repository will allow investigators to view and create reports on their pending proposals and awards; and chairs, deans/directors, and other administrators to view and create reports on pending proposals and awards in their departments/units and colleges. 

Evisions Research Suite - Home


A Quick Summary

A direct link to Cayuse is provided on the OSP home page. Click on the Cayuse logo to open a link to the NAU Central Authentication Service (CAS); then enter your NAU user ID and CAS password. The Research Suite screen shown above is the home page for Cayuse SP. Under the Research Administration Modulesheading, you have the option to select Cayuse 424 or Cayuse SP. Select Cayuse SP.You will begin and route all proposals in Cayuse SP. After all approvals are received, OSP will submit the proposal according to the sponsor’s requirements.

Welcome to Cayuse SP


After you select Cayuse SP, aweb page opens containing links to Proposal, Award, and Certifications/Approvals Dashboards. The Proposal Dashboard provides access to create, edit, and view proposals.Similarly, the Awards Dashboard provides access to awards for investigators, chairs, deans, and other individuals with appropriate authorizations. The Certifications/Approvals Dashboard provides access to the PI Certification Inbox (for investigators) and the Dept. Approval Inbox (for chairs, deans/ directors, and other approvers). The number of actions in each Inbox is indicated on the left side of the link (e.g., see the number "1" beside “My Proposals” in the Proposal Dashboard in the above figure). If you are a chair, dean, or other approver (e.g., for cost share), open the Dept. Approval Inbox to review a proposal. Note: contact OSP at for questions about your access level.


Start a New Proposal File in Cayuse Sp as soon as you begin Writing a Proposal

Initiating the new proposal file in Cayuse SP is the first indication OSP has that you are preparing a proposal. That information is important for planning, to balance workloads, and to prepare for other situations, such as limited submissions where an internal review is required to select the proposal(s) that may be submitted.

Another benefit to starting the Cayuse SP proposal file is that OSP Grant and Contract Administrators (GCAs) and Grant and Contract Coordinators (GCCs) can provide you and your team early assistance and useful information about preparing and submitting your proposal. Additionally, all administrators in the department(s)/ unit(s) or college(s)/center(s), etc., who have “view proposal” access will be alerted that you are preparing a proposal and also able to assist you.


Secure Cost Share Commitments as Early as Possible

The University requires sponsored project costs to be funded to the greatest extent possible by the sponsor(s) and any cost share that is not required is discouraged. Types of internal cost share include tuition and/or fee waivers, cash match, and in-kind commitments of salary and wages. F&A waivers or reductions by the Vice President for Research are rarely approved.

If cost share will be proposed, request approvals (e-mail, memo, etc.) from each contributing office as early as possible and upload the approval(s) in the attachments section of Cayuse SP. The budget section of Cayuse SP includes space to itemize each item of cost sharing (internal and external). As each source of cost share is entered, the office providing the cost share is automatically added to the proposal routing chain. The Assistant Vice President for Research Administration will certify third party cost share based on the provided documentation.

In the case of cost-share agreements among several offices at the University, the most common form of documentation is a cost-share memo signed by each office. These documents should be uploaded in Cayuse SP.


Recommended Steps for Entering Information
Cayuse SP Proposal Item List

Information about the proposal is entered in each of the links that appear in the Item List shown to the left. Notice that the Proposal Number(in this case, 14-0129, next to the Item List) is automatically assigned in Cayuse SP; this reference number will stay with the project from proposal submission through award closeout.

Complete the General Informationand Investigators/Research Teamlinks.Information on these pages identifies the sponsor, investigator, and managing department. What you do next depends on whether you are Principal Investigator (PI) entering information about your own proposal, or you are entering information for the PI.

If you are the PI, we suggest you focus next on the compliance sections highlighted to the right: Conflict of Interest, Regulatory Compliance, Export Control, Intellectual Property, Community Benefits, and Location of Sponsored Activities. These questions concern required certifications and/or contain information that is likely known only to the PI. The other sections can be completed by you or an assistant, including the budget, abstract, document uploads section, approving departments, notes section, and link to the Cayuse 424 Grants.Gov proposal (if applicable). As pages are saved, a green check box appears signifying that the requested information has been provided.

If you are entering information for the PI, we suggest you focus on the Budget, Subcontractors, Application Abstract, Attachments, and Approving Departmentssections and the Cayuse 424 Proposal (if applicable). Once the proposal is ready for internal routing, the PI can log on and complete the sections highlighted above at the same time that he/she certifies the proposal.

The information on any of these links can be reviewed and updated prior to submission simply by clicking the link. Be sure to save your changes before moving to a different section.

With one exception, all proposal information is entered in Cayuse SP. The exception is for proposals that are submitted through the Cayuse 424 S2S interface; information for these proposals is entered both in Cayuse SP and Cayuse 424. See below, pp. 27-30, for detailed guidelines for preparing a Cayuse 424 proposal.

When all sections of the Item List have green check marks, the proposal is almost ready for internal routing. Even though it’s very easy to enter and/or upload proposal information, wait to click the “Submit for Routing” link until after you’ve discussed the proposal with your OSP GCA/GCC. The reason for this is to avoid having to pull the proposal back from routing to correct errors.

Once the proposal is authorized for routing, all the information that’s been input and/or uploaded can be viewed by all internal approvers, including the PI and any other department/college/unit-level approvers. Once all approvers have certified the proposal, the proposal gets a final review by the OSP GCA, and if everything is in good order, is authorized by an Authorized Institutional Representative/Signatory (AOR) and submitted following the sponsor’s instructions.


Best Practice

Update your personal profile in Cayuse 424

One of the most common errors that we see is incorrect information about a faculty member’s title, department, and affiliation. We recommend that you review and update your information in the Investigator’s Personal Profile (found on the People tab in Cayuse 424) at least once a year, or if you have a title or department change. This information is used to auto-populate tables in Cayuse SP. The most important fields to update are the department, division, and title fields. OSP will refresh the contact list on a daily basis for the next several months to assure that contact information is accurate. 

Use FIREFOX, not Internet Explorer or Safari

Currently, Firefox is the only software approved for Cayuse SP/424. We’ll let you know if any other software becomes approved for use.