Do you have enough time to do all the planning, collaboration and writing by the due date? A proven rule of thumb is to estimate how many hours it will take to do everything and then multiply that number by three.
Review the application carefully.
Be sure your project is aligned with the funder’s priorities as well as with district and site goals. Other things to consider include the amount of funding available, restrictions on what kind of activities are allowable and preferences for serving specific populations or geographic regions.
Take advantage of support before you start writing.
The Grants Department can help minimize the time you invest in proposal preparation if you call us first. Brainstorming ideas, interpreting the funder’s subtle “between the lines” priorities and making connections with potential partners are some of the support services that will help ensure your project’s competitiveness.
Follow the application guidelines exactly.
Most funders do a technical screening for length and format requirements. These must be strictly observed or your proposal will not even get read. Pay close attention to submission instructions. For example, must the application be postmarked or received by the specified date?
Remember, the process is successful even if you don’t get funded the first time.
Bringing stakeholders together to create coalitions, identify needs and develop solutions can be more important than only getting the money.