A Web-based program, ranging from $495 for an individual yearly subscription up to $500,000 per institution, Cayuse allows users to work online without downloading or needing to integrate any additional programs.
Auto updates: Cayuse checks for updates from Grants.gov for the applications you're working on and then applies them automatically. With PureEdge, users were required to check Grants.gov frequently for updates and changes to the application, and download a new application every time. If an institution submits an application without appropriate updates, it is flagged with an error message and is returned to the institution for correction. For Cayuse users, a message pops up, alerting you that a section of the application has been altered or added and needs attention, long before you hit "submit."
Multiple logins: Cayuse allows multiple users to sign on and access...
You submit it: PureEdge requires that only authorized users (e.g. grant administrators) submit applications to Grants.gov. Researchers using Cayuse can submit their applications themselves. "Scientists will insist that the most brilliant proposal comes within days of the deadline," which overloads the grant office, says Patricia McNulty, a grant administrator in the University of Massachusetts Medical School Office of Research. With Cayuse, scientists can work on the science portion of their applications until the last minute, if they need to.
Cost: Institutions using Cayuse foot the bill that allows all of their researchers to submit unlimited grant applications. The service is also available to individual researchers, but it's pricey; a yearly subscription is $495.
The inexplicable exploder: The "exploder" option is one of the more advanced tools in Cayuse. Researchers can type their applications in one continuous document and then enter it into Cayuse. The program "explodes" it into, say, five separate PDF sections that require the information. However, in order to tell Cayuse how it should divide the text, the researcher must properly enter precise section headers. This feature "doesn't always work as advertised, mainly because the PIs don't follow it perfectly," says Kobertz. "It doesn't cover enough of the typical errors like accidental misspelling," or incorrect formatting, for example.
Got everything? Although the Cayuse program keeps a running tally of warnings and notices regarding your application, some warnings haven't been developed yet. "A cover letter is often recommended," says Kobertz, "but people didn't submit grants with cover letters because Cayuse didn't tell them to submit it." Bottom line: Check out the application requirements on Grants.gov and make sure you're submitting everything to Cayuse.
Grant orphans: Cayuse can't be used for all federal grants, nor does it support applications for clinical trials or animal use. According to Cayuse, the program can be used for 83% of all federal grants and includes the biggest granting agencies such as NIH and the National Science Foundation.