Skip to end of metadata
Go to start of metadata

This page contains Frequently Asked Question raised by end-users to the Helpdesks; this FAQ is also maintained in the Participant Portal.



What's New in NEF

The What's New page will be continually updated following the latest release of NEF.

To have access to this page and the latest changes that have occured in NEF Click here .
To have access to older versions of NEF, Click here .



Table of contents:







The number of (star) indicates the frequency of the question.


General Questions

Which platforms are supported? (star)

Please consult the main page of NEF documentation for the browser compatibility list; but please take note that (minus)  Firefox 3 is not supported at the moment. This restriction results from an incompatibility between the framework used by NEF and Firefox. These limitations will be fixed in the coming months but require heavy regression testing. 

Do you have a list of known issues? (star)(star)

The list of known issue is available in this FAQ following this link.


Accessing the Application

This troubleshooting is done in the context of visibility of NEF from the Participant Portal and how rights granted in the Participant Portal have an impact on NEF usage. Please follow these links to understand how access rights are managed in the Participant Portal.

I have problems with my eCas account. Who can I contact? (star)(star)

You can have several kind of issues with your eCas account, but first of all make sure it is a problem with your eCas account: Commission provides you with several types of logins (SESAM, EPSS, EMM, eCas, etc...) and you may get confused. Then if you have issues related to your eCas account (password forgotten, confused between login and email adresses), you can contact DIGIT-USER-ACCESS@ec.europa.eu. Why can I not see my project in the Participant Portal? (star)(star)(star)

Please refer to visibility of NEF from the Participant Portal and how rights granted in the Participant Portal if the terminology below is not clear to you. 

This issue can have the following root causes:

  1. Your access has not been granted.
    As coordinator contact point your access should be granted by the Commission: check with your Project Officer that the email address of your eCas account is properly registered in NEF.
    As participant your access is granted by your coordinator: check with him that the email address of your eCas account is properly registered in NEF. The documentation on granting access is available here.
  2. Your request to accessyour project has been sent to you too early.
    For DG RTD projects there is a latency between IT systems which might result in the fact that your project is not yet published in the participant portal. After one working day the project should appear. If you still have issues accessing  your project you can try to access it using the following link:
      

Any other problems must be reported to the helpdesk.  

What if I do not see any link to access my project in the Participant Portal? (star)

This problem is due to synchronization issues. It must be reported to the helpdesk.

When I click on the link in Participant Portal the system says I am not authorised to access it. (star)

This problem is due to synchronization issues. It must be reported to the helpdesk.

I am a LEAR and I cannot access projects of my organization. Why? (star)(star)

The LEAR do not have automatic access to projects in which their organization participates; this access, if desired, must be granted by each coordinator in the Participant Portal (see the related documentation).

Why somebody registered as a Contact Person in NEF cannot access the project? (star)(star)

The email address of the contact person does not define access rights; access rights are defined from the participant portal according to this documentation. However at the negotiation stage, the participant portal is fed by the data which is found in NEF in the Contact Person form. It explains that at the beginning of the negotiation, access rights from the Participant Portal match the information included in the  Contact Person form. But this information must be maintained separetely.

My grant agreement is signed, but my project do not appear in the Active tab. Why? (star)

For DG CONNECT (former DG INFSO)/MOVE/ENER, a project will appear in the Active tab only when a Cost Claim of an Amendment had been launched; else the project stays in Negotiation. It is not the case for DG RTD/REA/ERC/ENTR projects.

Time has come to fill-in cost claim, but I have no link to reporting. Why? (star)

See topic how a cost claim session is started.


Questions related to form manipulations (edit, save, finalize, submit)

I cannot save or modify a form. What is the reason? (star)(star)(star)

This issue can have the following root causes:

  1. You want to modify read-only information: legal data is always read-only (changes must be requested by the LEAR from the participant portal), all information except cost claims are read-only for periodic reports. 
  2. You are using Firefox 3. Please refer to this section of the FAQ; usually an error is raised by the system.
  3. You do not have the right to perform the action. Please refer to the section of the manual which explains management of action rights; usually the save or finalize button is grayed, or does not appear.
  4. The session you are working on has already been submitted, therefore appears to be read-only (no save button, no submit button, all forms are read-only). In this case please ask to your Project Officer or coordinator to create a new session.
  5. Your contribution has already been finalized and the partner appears as completed; un-finalize your contribution and the forms will be editable again. It is possible that you do not have the right to finalize/un-finalize. In that case please refer to the section of the manual which explains management of action rights.

I get an error message "orbeon error" or "orbeon form". What can I do? (star)(star)

This issue can have the following root causes:

  1. You are using Firefox 3. Please refer to this section of the FAQ 
  2. The platform is not fully available; some components of the application may not be available: please consult the home page of the Participant Portal for any notice of maintenance.
  3. Your session has reached a timeout; in that case please close the browser and retry the same operation.

If the solution above does not help you, then you are facing a bug in the application and a call to the helpdesk is your last option.

Elligible costs or costs are not properly computed. What is the reason? (star)(star)

This issue is a known issue with the usage of Firefox 3. Please refer to this section of the FAQ. 

I cannot finalize or submit a session. What can I do? (star)

This issue can have the following root causes:

  1. Your organization does not have a PIC yet; in this case the application prevents you from submitting or finalizing. Go to the Participant Portal and register to get a draft PIC. A draft PIC is sufficient to submit or finalize.
  2. You do not have the right to perform the action. Please refer to the section of the manual which explains management of action rights; usually the save or finalize button is grayed, or does not appear.
  3. The session you are working on has already been submitted, therefore appears to be read-only (no save button, no submit button, all forms are read-only)

Why legal data is read-only? (star)(star)

Legal data forms are presenting data from the FP7/CIP central database for legal data. Changing this data must be requested by the LEAR in the Participant Portal. Legal data presented in Periodic Reports / Cost Claims cannot be changed at all; if you want to change it please contact your Project Officer who can give you the proper procedure.

I cannot remove a file. What can I do? (star)

If you are able to modify forms (meaning if you have the proper access rights to perform this operation), it comes from the fact that two document are registered for this entry. It can happen if you click twice on "upload" if you are not patient enough with the system. The only way is to ask the helpdesk to remove the faulted entry.

LEAR information are not displayed. What can I do? (star)

The information about the LEAR are also part of the Legal data forms and are therefore also read-only. Then the information about the LEAR if not filled mean that the LEAR had not been appointed officially yet. Please check the documentation of the Participant Portal to check this information. However the fact that the LEAR information are empty is not a problem as such: the LEAR is not mentionned in any document and is displayed in NEF for historical reasons; it will not prevent you to sign a contract, an amendment of a cost claim even if it is very important you choose a LEAR if you want to update your legal and financial information.


Questions related legal and financial status

My organizayion does not appear in the Legal and Financial Viability (LFV)? (star)

The LFV uses a service which is refreshed every 6 hours; therefore it is possible that once added you do not see a newly added participant in the LFV service.

My legal status or my funding percentage is not correctly show in NEF. What can I do? (star)(star)

The fact that this information is read-only is explained here. Then if you are an facing a discrepency between your status (please check with your LEAR) and NEF, please consider the following cases:

You are an SME in negotiation. SME status is managed differently if you are involved in a project managed by CONNECT (former INFSO) or by RTD: 

  • RTD relies on validation: you will be entitled to 75% only after your SME status is validated by Commission
  • CONNECT (former INFSO) relies on self-declaration for now: you will be entitled to 75% before your self-declaration

Also in a Periodic Report/.Cost Claim or Amendment sessions the legal data displayed is the legal data of the contract at the time the Periodic Reporting or Amendment exercise is launched, therefore a discrepency is normal.

If you still face a discrepency, please follow these guidelines:

  1. Negotiation: report a discrepency to your project officer: he is able to refresh the data.
  2. Amendments: report a discrepency to your project officer: he is able to refresh the data.
  3. Cost Claim: report a discrepency to your project officer, but be aware that any change will have to be implemented through a change in the contract.

Questions related to management of Description of Work

I cannot generate the Description of Work. What can I do? (star)

The Description of Work is generated by merging what NEF generates and what you as coordinator upload in NEF; the following cases can apply:

  1. You do not upload a PDF file: then the Description of Work generated will not contain your document
  2. The generation fails: the merge can have problem with some PDF; in that case it means that the PDF you generate is not recognized by the library used by NEF. NEF supports a huge variety of PDF generators (open source, etc...) so you might try to generate your document with another generator, or last case send the document to the helpdesk for re-generation: the helpdesk will simply re-print your document with a supported PDF printer. We do not yet provide  a list of supported PDF printers.

NEF generates an empty "Date of Approval". Why? (star)

This date will be removed in a near future. It was relevant with the previous paper version of the Description of Work, but is no longer relevant.

I cannot access  the Description of Work in an amendment. Why? (star)(star)

DG CONNECT (former INFSO) proejcts do not yet propose access to the Description of Work in an amendment. This service will be avaiable beginning of July 2010. We suggest you contact your Project Officer and wait for this availability before proceeding with an amendment.

Why can't I use basic formating in the description of the work package? (star)(star)(star)

NEF system do not allow at the moment to add any rich formating in the description of the work packages. However, without giving any legal guidelines, we suggest you to transfer any heavy formating, images, tables that you find relevant for the description of the work package to the narrative part of the Description of Work.

The system cuts the description of deliverables. Why? (star)

Deliverables description is limited to 2.500 characters; the system will cut after this limit; this is to protect generation of WT2.

Why is the Person Month field Read Only in the WorkPackages screen? (star)

It is a calculate field; derived from the sum of the Person Months column in the Deliverables section.

Why kind of document should I provide as narrative part for the Description of Work? (star)

You may upload any kind of document in the narrative part, including word processing files with track changes but we strongly advise that you only upload a PDF file since the system will merge this PDF file with data encoded in NEF.


Question related to partner manipulations

I want to change a PIC. How can I do? (star)(star)

If you want to change a PIC, please contact your Project Officer: he has a special interface which allow him to change the PIC of a partner. Do not try to add and delete participants, you are going to face other issues, since a partner is only logically deleted in the system.

How to add a 3rd party? (star)

Please refer to this section of the documentation.

How can I add a partner who does not have a PIC? (star)

You cannot add a partner without a PIC; however you can add a partner with a draft PIC, meaning that you do not need to submit all legal documents before registering in the system: just ask  the participant to go to the Participant Portal and request a draft PIC. This procedure is fast, getting a draft PIC is a matter of minutes.

A PIC is mandatory to participate to FP7.

There is a hole in the participant's number. What can I do? (star)(star)

For this kind of issue, you must create a call to the helpdesk which will take the proper action. This issue happens when you delete or terminate a partner and will be fixed in a near future.

Preventively, one can first reorder the to be removed participant to the last place in the consortium, and then delete the participant; this will prevent the hole in the middle.

How do I renumber/reorder? (star)

Click on the ReOrder button, from where in a Popup the reordering can be applied by using the arrows on the right.

How do I change the coordinator role ? (star)(star)

In the 'Legal data' screen of the particpant, one can change the Type of Particpant to 'Coordinator' ; The action implies that the old coordinator will become participant.

How can I change the Short name of the organisation? (star)

In the 'Legal Data' screen of the application: there is a field, and this is the only editable field.

I have set a wrong entry or leaving date for a partner. How can I change it? (star)(star)

You cannot do it yourself: you have to introduce a call to the helpdesk who will do it for you. It is foreseen to allow participant to set or update the entry date of a partner in an amendment, but in the meantime please contact the helpdesk.

Why 3rd parties do not appear in GPF/PartA? (star)

Part A or GPF are Grant Preparation Form. Since 3rd parties are not listed in the Grant Agreement, but only in the Annex I, it is normal they do not appear in the Part A / GPF.


Periodic Report - Cost Claim

I cannot save a cost claim because I get "Please check error in form" error. What can I do? (star)(star)(star)

Cost form contains 3 tabs, and NEF raises this error if a mandatory field is missing in any of these tabs. Please check all three tabs, and specifically the 3rd one: it is a clerical error to forget to provide the "Authorized signatory" in the 3rd tab.

Why can't I finalize a cost claim? (star)(star)

The only profile who can finalize a cost claim for now if the Participant Contact Point of the participant. If you are Financial Officer you cannot finalize a Cost Claim. This point is under discussion and will changed in the near future. You must ask  your Participant Contact Point, or  your coordinator, who also has the right to finalize your contribution.

click here for more information on access management in the Participant Portal.

I need to provide a Certification of Financial Statement (CFS) but I need the FormC.  How can I do that? (star)(star)

The system has a usability problem at the moment: one cannot get the FormC without finalizing. therefore it is difficult to send a draft FormC to an auditor, since one need to finalize to make cost appearing in the draft FormC.

This usability problem will be fixed in the near future. For now we propose following this work-around procedure, with our apologies:

  1. Fill in the forms costs and signatory.
  2. Save the form.
  3. Finalize  FormC.
  4. Go to the main page and generate FormC; you can send this draft FormC to your auditor.
  5. Un-Finalize FormC.
  6. Once you get the final Certificate from the auditor, upload it.

I cannot declare interest on a prefinancing in an adjustment. How should I proceed? (star)(star)

You have to declare the adjustment in the FormC of the period you are working on: please indicate the cumulative of the current persion and the adjustment you declare. Please ask to the coordinator to add short note in the "Other" documents of the periodic report to make Commission aware of this adjustment. In the future we will enhance this functionality.

When a reporting or cost claim exercise is starting by Commission services? (star)

A reporting or cost claim session is started by Commission after a set of checks on the grant agreement; however if shortly after the end of the reporting period you are not been invited to fill-in your costs, please contact your project officer to enquire why such session had not been started.


Periodic Report - General

What happens if a beneciary does not submit a Form C?

(warning) Caution: The coordinator may decide to submit a partial report. The payment calculation will be based on what has been submitted. A partner who has not submitted a Form C can submit it at one of the following periods.

What happens if a beneficiary does not submit a CFS?

See information on CFS to see which partner should have uploaded a CFS.

(warning) If a beneficiary failed to submit his CFS by the period deadline, the costs of this beneficiary will not be considered eligible and will be rejected in the payment calculation by the Commission. The beneficiary will have the opportunity to submit his CFS during the next period - at which time the previous costs will be eligible and will be taken into account in the payment calculation.

Thus, failing to submit a CFS results in a temporary reduction in the payment made by the Commission.

How do I know if I need to upload a Certificate for Financial Statement?

Refer to CFS for specific rules which define when CFS is required.

What happens if I do not agree or understand the reimbursement rate of my organisation?

The cost reimbursement rate (or maximum Community contribution) depends upon the funding scheme and the type of organisation. This information is agreed before the grant agreement is signed. Each beneficiary should have a Legal Entity Appointed Representative (LEAR), who is the person responsible with his or her deputies) for providing the information to the Commission which will be used to define the maximum Community contribution.

For any question on this, please refer to your Legal Entity Appointed Representative (LEAR).

What happens if I do not understand or agree with the legal information of my organisation?

The legal information of your organisation has been communicated by your Legal Entity Appointed Representative (LEAR). Each beneficiary should have a LEAR, who is the person responsible (with his her deputies) for providing the information to the Commission which will be used to define the beneficiary legal information.

For any question on this, please refer to your Legal Entity Appointed Representative (LEAR).

What happens if I do not understand the indirect cost model of my organisation?

The Indirect Cost Model (ICM) is defined before the grant agreement is signed by the Legal Entity Appointed Representative (LEAR)of your organisation. Each beneficiary should have a LEAR, who is the person responsible (with his her deputies) for providing the information to the Commission which will be used to define the ICM.

For any question on this, please refer to your Legal Entity Appointed Representative (LEAR).


Known Issues

  • Cannot delete an adjustment in period 2/3/... (from 02/2010)

An adjustment cannot be deleted; the issue is very difficult to fix with an impact on cost computation. We request beneficiaries who created and adjustement and want to remove it to fill it with 0 costs and submit it like that: Commission will consider it is an empty adjustement and will ignore it.

  • Cannot modify a document in periodic reporting for periods 2/3/... (from 02/2010)

Another side effect of the problem mentionned above: it is impossible to replace a document in period 2/3 if you created an adjustment. In that case please introduce a call to the helpdesk under the topic "technical problem with NEF"; then the helpdesk will delete the entry for you and you will be able to replace the document. 

  • Cannot set the cost and auditor name for a certification of the methodology (from 05/2010)

This is not possible to set this information in the system at the moment (FormC / tab "Other"); please contact the helpdesk, provide your project reference and acronym, the name of the auditor and the cost of the certificate then the helpdesk will set the information for you.

Labels
  • None