Responding to a Data Verification Request
Intended for Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) grantees reporting in the Performance Measurement Tool (PMT), this short training reviews the importance of grantee data, how BJA verifies the accuracy of grantee data, data entry tips, and what to do if you are contacted regarding data that you entered into the PMT system.
[Instructor] This short training is intended for Bureau of Justice Assistance grantees reporting in the Performance Measurement Tool system or PMT. We will review the importance of grantee data, how BJA verifies the accuracy of grantee data, data entry tips, and what to do if you are contacted regarding data that you entered into the PMT system. Understanding the importance of performance measurement ensures strong program development. Performance measurement provides opportunities to improve existing programs and create ideas for new ones by showing raw output to programs' data. Performance measurement allows you, as a grantee, and BJA to answer the who, what, where, and when regarding your program. For BJA, performance measures provide a holistic view of your program to identify areas of success and potential opportunities for improvement. In addition, this information allows BJA to identify and create targeted training and technical assistance to help you, as the grantee, as you continue through the performance management process. Not only that, but collecting measures also helps the Department of Justice comply with the reporting requirements of federal law. This includes the Government Performance and Results Modernization Act of 2010, the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act of 2014, the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policy Making Act of 2018, and the Grant Reporting Efficiency and Agreements Transparency Act of 2019. Performance measurement also provides a tremendous benefit to you, as a grantee. It can help you proactively address challenges and generate evidence that you are meeting your goals, and allows you to show the impact of your program and your organization. Your data will pass through several checks once you've submitted it. There are validations and skip patterns built into the PMT system. There are certain types of questions that you'll want to be aware of as you enter your performance data. Baseline questions collect information on activity before your grant becomes operational to enable pre- and post-grant comparisons. Carry forward questions reduce the reporting burden by not requiring you to enter, but allowing you to update, responses to questions where information is likely to remain stable. Skip flow questions reduce the reporting burden, by allowing you to skip sets of questions that are not applicable to your project. Null or blank cells appear because of the system skip patterns or validations. The end may change, depending on which questions are required based on individual grantee responses. Once your report is submitted, your Grant Manager will review the data and may ask for changes. Your data is also downloaded 45 to 50 days after the end of our reporting period. A team of analysts conducts data review and verification, which can take another 30 plus days to complete. Each record is reviewed for inconsistencies and missing information. Please note that the PMT database is dynamic, and questions may be updated, revised, or added both during and after a reporting period. If any issues with your data are identified during the verification process, the BJA PMT Helpdesk will follow up with you. You will receive an email, such as the one shown on the screen, that describes the issue, possible resolutions, and the date the change is requested by. If you receive an email regarding your data, it's important to act in a timely manner. First, we suggest you log into the PMT to confirm the accuracy of submitted data. You should also reference the performance measures questionnaire for your program. It's an important guide to understanding the questions and how to report data. The questionnaire can be found at the link shown, here. Contact the BJA PMT Helpdesk to request your report be unlocked for editing. If you have questions regarding your data, or if you need assistance understanding your program's performance measures, or to confirm the accuracy of the data submitted, or to notify us that your data has been updated. Grantee responses are tracked and shared with BJA Grant Managers, as part of the data verification process. As mentioned previously, the system has built-in skip patterns and validations. If a question appears, it is required. Numeric fields require an entry. If you have an "unknown" or "NA" value, enter 9999. Do not forget to submit your completed report. Narrative questions allow you to explain any of the data you entered that may need more context. If you are unsure how to respond to a performance measure question, contact the BJA PMT Helpdesk. We would also like to share some tips to improve data quality that you can do from the very beginning of your grant program. It's recommended that a designated staff person coordinate all performance measure data collection and entry to ensure consistency. Ensure a backup person or persons are aware of the process, so they can fill in if the designated staff person is unavailable or leaves the role. If this is the first time you will report data, make sure you're familiar with the data you need to collect and report on. You could do this by reviewing the PDF of the performance measures questionnaire. Training opportunities provide a great chance for you to get up to speed on reporting requirements, changes to the process or questions, and have your questions answered in real time. Document any internal process for collecting and reporting data. Consider available data collection methods, including case management systems or other databases, spreadsheets, tracking intake forms, or methods. If partner organizations are included in your program design, be sure to engage them from the start in the planning process. Determine if formalized agreements are needed to ensure the necessary data is collected and the program meets its goals and objectives. Watch out for, and respond in a timely fashion, to outreach regarding your data, and don't hesitate to contact the BJA PMT Helpdesk for help if you need it. During this transition to JustGrants there are two different helpdesks available to assist grantees, depending on the nature of the issue or question. Contact the BJA PMT Helpdesk for PMT questions and account creations, for creating the report for upload to JustGrants, for questions on performance measures whether you're reporting in either system, and for one-on-one assistance with reporting requirements and measures, PMT system navigation, data collection, to review submitted reports, and more. Contact the JustGrants Support team for JustGrants questions and account creations, for navigating JustGrants, unlocking your JustGrants account or help of your password, for roles and permissions, for error messages in JustGrants, for uploading performance reports from PMT into JustGrants. And as a tip, just remember, the performance measures, or PMT system, contact the PMT Helpdesk. Anything JustGrants related, contact the JustGrants Support team. Thank you for watching, and don't hesitate to reach out if you need assistance.
Opinions or points of view expressed in these recordings represent those of the speakers and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice. Any commercial products and manufacturers discussed in these recordings are presented for informational purposes only and do not constitute product approval or endorsement by the U.S. Department of Justice.