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About Award Cash Management $ervice

Attention NSF Awardees: Starting April 4, 2013, National Science Foundation (NSF) awardee institutions should submit their final Federal Financial Report (FFR) and convert to the Award Cash Management $ervice (ACM$) on  Additionally, NSF disabled the FastLane cash request function effective March 26, 2013. View Instructions. 

The Award Cash Management $ervice (ACM$) is a new approach to award payments and post-award financial processes which will transition financial processing of award payments from the current “pooling” method to a “grant-by-grant” method. This will require the submission of award level payment amounts each time funds are requested. Customers will access ACM$ through starting in 2013. The National Science Foundation (NSF) will continue to communicate with awardee institutions as this new service is made available.

Why Transition to ACM$?

• NSF is placing increased focus on transparency and accountability in the stewardship of Federal funds
• Congress, OMB and other stakeholders are requiring more up-to-date information on how tax dollars are being spent
• ACM$ is being developed to help NSF comply with new standardized financial reporting requirements

How Does ACM$ Work and What are the Benefits?

ACM$ will allow awardee institutions to submit cash requests and adjustments to open and closed awards, as well as access award level information on payments and award balances . Other benefits include:
• Better and more timely access to financial data, funds status monitoring and expenditure reports
• Reduced need for manual accounting processes including reconciliations and adjustments
• Quicker identification of awardees  that need technical assistance through more transparent data

Implementation of ACM$

Starting in January 2013, ACM$ will be implemented early at 38 research organizations. These organizations will begin using ACM$ after the submission of their final Federal Financial Report to NSF. ACM$ will be implemented at all NSF awardeee organizations in April 2013. 

How Can I Learn More?

  • ACM$ Fact Sheet
    The National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Award Cash Management $ervice (ACM$) is a new approach to award payments and post-award financial processes.
  • ACM$ Frequently Asked Questions
    NSF is changing its approach to payment processes to comply with the new transparency and accountability standards established for the stewardship of Federal funds.
  • ACM$ Permissions Guide
    In order to access ACM$ functionality on, an NSF User must first be assigned new permissions within the National Science Foundation’s FastLane system.
  • ACM$ External User Getting Started Guide
    Financial users can access the ACM$ by logging in to
  • ACM$ Instructions for New NSF Awardees
    To conduct financial activities with the National Science Foundation (NSF), you must be assigned Financial Functions User (FFU) permissions through FastLane. This guide provides step-by-step instructions on this process.
  • ACM$ Webinar Presentation
    Researchers can do business with NSF through a suite of services.
  • ACM$ XML File Upload Process Frequently Asked Questions, Data Dictionary and Instruction Guide
    This guide outlines the Award Cash Management $ervice (ACM$) XML File Upload Process. ACM$ on will allow organizations to use the ACM$ XML File Upload Process when completing their payment requests. The XML data file will be produced by the participating organization and will not rely on awardees downloading a template first. This guide assists financial users with that process. The data in the XML file must follow the structure listed in the data dictionary table available in this document.
  • ACM$ Excel File Example
    NSF awardees have the option to submit payment requests using an Excel file. This file is an example of what users will see if they choose this option in ACM$. The boxes shown in grey in this example will be auto-populated with each Institution’s information. Please do not use this example file to submit payment requests.