ACS PRF Salesforce Submission FAQ


  • Principal Investigation (PI) – the professor seeking funding for the proposed research.
  • Institutional Grant Officer (IGO) – any/all individuals other than the PI or co-PI who according to the policies and practices of the institution have a role in the proposal submission process and/or grant administration process.
  • Submitter – The individual who registers their email to create the ACS Network ID and physically submits the proposal into the PRF data system.

1. Single Sign On (SSO):

The new Petroleum Research Fund (PRF) proposal submission process has a required single user access limitation.  Thus only one individual with user ID and password can have access to a proposal in the PRF data system. As the proposal form is now to be filled out on line, we recognize that this may be problematic in view of institutional proposal review requirements.  Accordingly please follow the following procedures.

  • If the Actual Physical Submission of Proposal is by the Principal Investigator (PI): If the institution’s procedures permit the PI to do the actual submission, then the PI may get an ID, access the PRF submission system, prepare the submission then download it as a PDF and circulate for approval and obtaining the required institutional representative’s signature.  Upon receiving the approvals and a PDF of the signature page, the PI would then submit.
  • If the Actual Physical Submission of proposal is by an Individual other than PI:  If an institution’s procedures require that a designated IGO other than the PI such as an individual associated with the institution’s grant office is to do the physical submission of the proposal, that IGO should be the one to get the ID and access to the system.   There are two options for transfer of the necessary information from the PI to the designated IGO.  The designated IGO may download the form for the PI, the PI may provide the necessary information and then the designated IGO would cut and paste the information from the PI into the on-line form.   The second alternative would be for the PI to get an ID number and fill in the on line from, download a PDF of the completed form and transfer it to the designated IGO.  Then the designated IGO would again need to cut and paste the information into an on-line form and submit.  It is not a problem if PI uses the system to create and fill in a form that is later downloaded as a PDF and transferred to the designated IGO for the IGO’s input into the system and submission as only the submitted form is processed by PRF.

2. Digital Signatures:

Digital signatures may be used for the required signatures so long as those signatures are visible on the PDF of the signature page that is uploaded into the system.

3. ACS Network ID (Required):

If an individual already has a valid ACS user ID, it may be used for accessing the submission portal.  However the submission portal is accessed from the PRF website not the general ACS login site: Registration or Proposal Submission Logon.

4. Institutional Grant Officer's Department Selection:

During registration, an IGO is filing one proposal or multiple proposals the IGO may select any department for the institution from the drop down menu for the response to the initial department question (See Registration Help).  The critical designation of the department is on the application form for a specific proposal.  The department listed on the application form should be the PI’s department.  

5. Applications from Outside the USA:

Applications are accepted from countries outside the USA that meet certain transparency index criteria.  If you do not find your institution (registration) or country (eligibility quiz) on applicable pull-down lists  please contact or a program officer. 

6. Access to a Proposal in the System:

At the present time only one individual--the registered user or submitter--can have access to the proposal in the system.  However that proposal application form can be downloaded as a PDF at any point in the process by the individual who has access and distributed as needed according to institutional protocol (See Application Submission Help).

7. Access to Recorded Webinar and Slides on New Submission Process:

View a webinar on the new system and proposal submission processes held on Thurs., Jan. 21, 1:00 PM EST.  Use Passcode:  6N^F6a$g

8. Saving Work in Progress:

The system has a save function which allows an individual to save work in progress.  [Save] and [Cancel] buttons will appear at the bottom of the screen when fields are edited.  Editing on fields is triggered by clicking on the pencil located to the right of the field.

9. Proposal Validation:

The system has a validation function and a proposal cannot be submitted until the validation function is satisfied.  The validation and submittal functions are options available from the pull-down menu on the application detail screen.  For problems in the validation step contact PRF support

10. Eligibility, Terms, Conditions, and Guidelines Document:

The PRF website page associated with each of the grant types has a link to an eligibility, terms, conditions, and guidelines document for the specific grant type. Note these differ with grant type so it is critical to use the link on the webpage associated with the specific grant type of interest.  These will remain essentially continually available on the website but may be updated as needed approximately 2 months before a submission window opens.

11. Learning the New System:

There is no “demo” or practice site for learning new system.  However as work in progress may be saved, applicants are encouraged to start working on their application early in the submission window.  The PRF database manager can access applications in progress and assist with submission process questions or issues.  To get assistance contact PRF support Additionally, as noted above in FAQ #1, a proposal is not processed by the PRF staff unless it is submitted.  Hence one may use the system for a “practice” proposal so long as it is not submitted.

12. Updating Organizational Information:

If organizational information needs to be updated, the individual making the submission should use the [Update Organization] button located at the top of the Contact Detail screen and supply the requested information.  Action is needed on the part of the PRF staff to complete the update, hence the updated information will not be included immediately.

13. Submission Window:

Proposals are only accepted during the proposal submission window.  Currently there are two submission windows per year one in mid-February to mid-March and the other in mid-September to mid-October.  Specific dates for the submission windows are posted on the website at least two months before the submission window opens.  Submission window information is also available on the home page of the application portal.

14. Grant Management and Reporting:

All PRF activities are being transferred to the new Salesforce data system.  Therefore, all grant management and reporting will be done in this new system.  As it currently stands the submitter who made the original submission would be the individual with access into the PRF system.