Are you winning more than fifty percent of your grants? According to Nonprofits for Dummies, anything under a 50% win rate is inadequate and ‘barely performing.’ The reason so many grants are passed over can be traced back to the applicant’s lack of research.
In this article, we’ll summarize five grant writing tips bringing big benefits to nonprofits. If you’d like to learn more about standing out during the grant application process, download our free whitepaper Optimize Your Grants Management Process for Greater Impact.
Tip #1: Find the right opportunity.
Half of the battle to win grants is finding an opportunity that’s as close a match as possible with your organization’s needs. Finding the right fit among the grantor, the grant itself, and your organization’s mission greatly improves the odds of winning more grants.
Spending time cultivating contacts at funding organizations and researching within the foundation can help you improve your ability to identify potential grants. Research which foundations and grantors support the work that you do. Study the application process and gather the materials that you need to prepare a winning proposal. The discovery process is very important and can greatly enhance your abilities to win more grants.
Tip #2: Centralize Information.
Creating a centralized database keeps you organized. Store frequently needed documents in a place accessible to everyone part of the grant writing process. Make sure this space is organized and easy to find. Build a contact list of people you know at the granting organizations and keep it updated. Keep notes from meetings about the grant so everyone can see updates along the way. With one place for your information it eliminates redundancy and keeps people from having to start from scratch.
Tip #3: Use software to manage grant funds and related reminders.
Set up true fund accounting software such as AccuFund so that it accurately tracks the flow of grant money towards projects. Systems created with grant management in mind ensure accurate tracking of grant funds applied towards specific projects as well as the ability to run reports to satisfy grant requirements.
AccuFund includes tools to set up reminders for upcoming grant deadlines, grant award date versus anticipated payment dates, and much more. If you aren’t sure how to set up AccuFund to manage the grant flow, we can help you. Contact us for assistance.
Tip #4: Track outcomes.
Grantors want to know that their funds accomplished the intended goal. To do this, you must track the outcomes of the specific project towards which the grant funds are applied. Outcome tracking varies according to the purpose of the grant and the receiving organization’s programs. Determine from the outset how you will measure the success of the funded program and track the necessary metrics so that reports back to the grantor contain quantitative as well as qualitative information.
Tip #5: Improve forecasting.
Forecasting likely grant revenue for a designated time frame enables your team to plan and forecast for corresponding programs. You can track data related to grant stages, next steps and anticipated revenues. Download our whitepaper to go deeper into this topic, Optimize Your Grants Management Process for Greater Impact.
Yes, You Can Win More Grants – Call EMK
The truth is, getting more grant funds can be a reality for your organization. With careful planning, better alignment among the grantor and projects, and thoughtful tracking, analysis, and planning, it is possible to win more grants. Contact the grant management experts at EMK to learn more.