Keeping goal focused can be hard at times. Creating systems to help keep you on track and your eyes on the prize is a must when juggling multiple tasks and deadlines. I’ve found that the following tips are key to keeping you goal oriented and laser focused when it comes to grants management.
1. Create a Grant Tracking List / Calendar
A grant calendar can help you and your organization keep on track. It should remind you of your funder’s proposal deadlines and help you submit your grant reports on time.
Benefits of a tracking system:
- Everyone has visibility to upcoming deadlines.
- Task owners receive reminders when items are coming due.
- Everyone on the grant team can see their upcoming deadlines and easily access grant documents.
- You have a process to continually add new opportunities to your calendar.
- Recurring funding opportunities are always reflected in your future plan.
- The system seamlessly facilitates the communication of your grant plan, progress, and results.
2. Organize Your Funders and Grant History
Tracking key information about the funders you work with is a good practice.
- Prospect Research
- Funder name,
- website link & other key contact info,
- link to their 990’s,
- areas they fund,
- typical funding range,
- funder type,
- their social media links,
- notes of past conversations,
- a list of your past grant history with them.
3. Coordinate Your Grant Team Responsibilities while Staying on Schedule
Grant management solutions can be utilized to track important deadlines and send email reminders of deadlines when they are approaching. Spending time upfront to identify everything that is needed and who is responsible helps you weed out funders that you are not a great fit with – which saves you lots of time if you catch that early in your process.
4. Assemble a Library of Boilerplates and Supporting Documents.
Spend time making sure you and your organization is ‘grant-ready.’ Having this work done upfront helps you complete more applications in less time. And the time saved can then be spent in higher value activities that will set your proposal apart from others.
5. Internally report on your progress at key intervals.
Pull together summary reports that can effectively communicate to your organization and Board the current status and progress of your grantseeking efforts.
Metrics to Report on:
- Grants by status (planned, in-progress, pending, awarded, denied, etc.)
- Grant Win Percentage,
- Upcoming Grant Deadlines by Month
- Top Funders by Program