The Six Steps To Grant Funding
The process of funding has a sequence. Each step enables the subsequent step of sourcing your funds. The steps are highlighted as follows;
1. Assemble Project/Business Profile
The first step in the funding process is to identify your need for a grant and use of funds. This step must fit in with your larger business objectives, and the funds must have specific uses, impact, and outcomes. Evaluating your business plan, even if it only exists as an executive summary is essential as a first step because it helps define the funding sources and fund usage.
The customer typically contributes content not found on their website such as annual budget, and the assembly of the project/business profile is iterative between Grants For You and the customer.
2. Initial Search
There are literally tens of thousands of funds available; the initial search reduces a vast list of funds to a smaller and manageable list of funds sourced from federal, state, and local foundations. After the funding objectives are defined by the business, on average, one to two weeks is used to compile a list of candidate funds. The vetting for those funds includes sufficient time to apply for the grant, whether the funds are available for the current fiscal year, matching the grant size to the business needs, and reporting and administration requirements.
Application for federal grants are typically highly competitive, and large grants can have very large numbers of applicants. As a rule, the larger the grant size, the stronger and greater the competition. Grants are more of a strategic asset than tactical one; the process can take six to eight months, and may require recurring annual applications, and routine reporting. Selecting the balance between grant size, and probability of award is an essential element in the initial grant search.
3. Candidate Sources Report
After the initial list of grant opportunities is assembled and rated, the list is reviewed with the customer. Approximately five funds are selected from the curated list which can number from ten to twenty, sometimes more, sometimes less. The list of reviewed funds is rated on a number of factors such as grant size, size of competition field, match to business objectives, complexity of reporting and management, and ease of allocation to the grant winner (some awards are made in a single allocation, others require regular compliance and usage reports, and audits). Some funds have objectives in the numbers of personnel hired during the twenty months following receipt of funds. Other factors may apply in the prioritizing of the prospective funding list.
4. Write Grant Application(s)
Once the final list of approximately five funds is finalized, Grants For You will then write the grant applications. Complexity and length of grant application varies widely and the grants are reviewed by the customer prior to uploading. Nearly all funds have deadline dates for application.
5. Track to award
Tracking and reporting of the status of the grant application is provided to the customer where transparency to the process is offered by the funding source. It is common for funding sources to “go dark” between the grant application and Notice of Award (NoA) dates. Dates for pre-award or additional rounds of competition for the grant are also common and disclosed by the funder as part of the application process.
6. Post Award Reporting
The NoA typically includes reporting requirements. The Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act (FFATA) requires reporting if your organization receives more than $25,000 from the federal government. If more than 80% or more of your prior year annual gross revenues are from federal awards, reports can include the following;
- Annual Federal Financial Report (FFR)
- Progress Reports (quarterly to annually)
- Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act (FFATA)
- Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS)
Generally the grant application includes line item expenses for Grants For You and other professional entities to support and assist in the reporting and consulting process. Part of the process for selecting candidate funds is the reporting factor which grows in complexity, type, and frequency as the funding numbers increase from under $25,000 to over $1 million.
What’s your story?
Visit our webpage at grantsforyou.org or call us at 469-744-0272. We’d love to custom craft a grants and crowd funding program for you.