Grants are vital to the success of many nonprofits. However, monitoring and managing every step of the grant lifecycle, from identifying potential funders and crafting compelling proposals to monitoring due dates and expected responses, can overwhelm many nonprofit executives.
Technology can do a lot of the heavy lifting for you. While most nonprofits are familiar with the grant process, we will walk through a few best-practice reminders and then show you the ways CharityEngine’s fundraising software makes grant management painless.
If you want to cut right to the chase and take a look at what grant management looks like in CharityEngine, watch this short demo video.
A Few Reminders for Nonprofit Grants
Many of our clients apply for multiple grants at a time. Whether you're new to the process or you're a pro, here are a few reminders that will serve all nonprofits:
- Match projects with specific funding needs. For each project or program that requires funding, map out exactly where the funds will go. Get granular as the detail will be needed for the application. If you're applying for multiple grants, carefully considering your needs and what they will require will make grant management easier.
- Look for grant opportunities from different sources. Grants can come from many places: Local, state, and federal government agencies offer grants, as do community and family foundations. Consult with your board and research opportunities online to determine for which grants your nonprofit is eligible to apply. Sites like GrantStation offer searchable databases to help your research efforts.
- Pick up the phone. An often-overlooked step, a phone call to grant managers might be what your application needs to get noticed. Most will be willing to share what they’re looking for in proposals or the criteria by which applications are judged. And they know your name, which might help in the award process.
- Write a human proposal. Offer background on your organization and then tell your story in a way that will break through proposals filled with industry jargon and sanitized descriptions. Explain why you’re seeking the money and how it fits in with your overall mission. Using emotional language is safe, but add facts and statistics to support your proposal.
- Use tech to track your grants carefully. It’s required that you track grant funding, and it’s smart business to be very methodical and transparent about the process. Lean on software that will help you remember reporting deadlines and automatically assign tasks to keep the process from overwhelming you.
- Enlist experts. Many nonprofits will hire professional grant writers who can leverage expensive experience to position your proposal favorably. Professional designers can be leveraged to create graphics, such as graphs and charts, that can make your proposal easy to read and understand.
- Record grant money received. Nonprofits can receive different types of grants, and each must be recorded following specific timing guidelines. Whether your grants are unconditional, contingent, or reimbursable, you'll always record the funds when you receive them.
Software built for fundraisers will make grant management more efficient and effective. With native modules, built-in automation, and powerful reporting, CharityEngine is the best choice for nonprofits needing grant management.
A thought about software for grant management: different vendors structure pricing differently, some by number of contacts and some by revenue. If you're a nonprofit relying heavily on grants, you might want to steer away from vendors who will charge you based on high revenue numbers instead of contacts.
CharityEngine’s Fundraising Software for Grant Management
CharityEngine offers fundraising software to nonprofits, and our claim to fame is that we are the only authentic all-in-one fundraising platform. This isn’t just a commercial; it’s the start of the list of reasons our product is superior at helping nonprofits with grant management.
Because all our modules are in one contained system, there are no data silos. When your grant tracking program can pull information from contact records, wealth data, and even AI-enabled insights, you’re able to identify potential grants, apply for them, track and manage them, and even use our payment processing to receive the funds. And every bit of information is at your fingertips, in real time. There’s no data syncing that slows you down.
Our opportunities dashboard is the cornerstone of your grant management, keeping you on track and preventing anything from falling through the cracks. The new opportunities dashboard provides clear visibility into the volume and stages of grants. It offers a pipeline view showing each stage’s volume. You also have activity tracking so you can create and track follow-up activities, and then assign them to a team member. Streamlined updates make adding notes and updating fields easier than ever. And all the data is in real time, so important metrics are always updated and available.
Whether your nonprofit is tracking grants or major gifts, our moves management gives nonprofits the tools to manage and track opportunities. The screen has a wizard tool that lets you feed grants into a pipeline. This data is then used by the system to create the dashboards and clearly indicate where your efforts should be focused. And once contacts are in the system, you can set up alerts so you’ll know every time they open an email or reach out to your team.
Within our moves management system, tasks can be automated. How is this helpful? If a grant moves to a new stage, the correct team member will be automatically assigned new tasks. This is helpful for other opportunities as well, such as major gifts. If a donor hits a threshold or engages with a call to action, the system will automatically create tasks for the staff member.
Our software offers an incoming and outgoing real-time stream, showing you all correspondence between anyone in your organization and anyone you’ve added from the grantor side. At a glance, you can see updated communications.
CharityEngine’s advanced filters enable you to segment contacts. When you’re segmenting donors, you are able to personalize communications and reach them through the most effective channels. When you can segment grant information, you can filter by stage, giving you insight into your overall grant management picture. This makes it easy to manage multiple grant applications at once.
Nonprofit Grant Management with CharityEngine
Seeking grants is a powerful strategy to amplify the impact of your nonprofit. When you leverage technology built for grant management, you are able to maximize the grant volume you need to make a big difference.
CharityEngine is more than technology. When you choose to partner with us, you’re choosing a partner that is completely invested in the success of your nonprofit. Have a product idea? 80% of new product features are usually requested by clients. Want some examples of how other nonprofits fundraise creatively? We love sharing good ideas from one client to another. And when you want the only technology built for fundraisers, there’s only one choice.
If it’s time for you to shop around, give us a call. We’ll show you why nonprofits as big as Wounded Warrior Project and Easterseals…and as small as Merlin’s Magic Wand…have chosen CharityEngine. We power the good to be great.