What Should I Look for in a Grant Management Solution?

grant-management-softwareDoes your nonprofit organization rely heavily on grant funding? If so, you have most likely already considered investing in an automated system to guide you through every stage of the grant life cycle. Grant management software provides many benefits to nonprofit organizations. It not only guides you through the initial grant application process, but it also keeps track of your current grants and maintains proper records.

Consider the following recommendations as you are evaluating grant management solutions for your organization:

  1. Ability to track and measure success or outcomes – Every nonprofit is different.  When evaluating a grant management solution, make sure it allows you to define, measure, and report on the key outcomes important to your organization.
  2. Intelligence dashboards – Quickly communicate the performance and results for any program, grant, or application giving you the ability to quickly respond and make adjustments.
  3. “Right” reporting – You should be able to configure reports just the way you want or need them. Look for a solution with a user-friendly interface and workflow that employees at all levels of experience will find easy to use.
  4. Collaboration capabilities – The best solutions feature communication and collaboration elements to help you keep track of contacts and deadlines, create budgets and better manage the grant pipeline.
  5. Document management – Seek out a solution that enables you to quickly store, access and update documents for each grant, relationship and application across the entire organization.
  6. Advanced budgeting capabilities – Make sure any grant solution you are considering includes budget building tools by item or dollars, quickly creates pro-forma budgets for grant applications, and integrates with your financial accounting solution.
  7. Access – Grant writers and program managers are often offsite. A web-based grant management solution will allow staff members to maximize productivity and efficiency across the organization.
  8. Grant application tracking – Complete date tracking, reminders, shared documentation and a common contact list allow faster compilation of application components and, therefore, a higher funding ratio.
  9. Strong internal controls – Help ensure the highest levels of accountability and security, building your organization’s credibility and ensuring donors’ trust.
  10. Seamless integration with fund accounting and CRM solutions.

The grant process is difficult enough as it is, but without the proper tools it can be nearly impossible to keep track of all of the information you need. Grant management software can make the process less difficult and more rewarding.