How do you go about managing the grant proposalprocess? If you are unprepared and do not have a team working efficiently. It can be a tedious and stressful process to get your grant proposal to submission. But if you were able to create a proposal calendar, organize drafts and manage the development process. The only worry you have is submitting the usgrants.org proposal. It can be hectic during the lastweek of submission, and you need to be ready to submit on time. Below are some five strategies that will make these last days less stressful.
- Give yourself plenty of time to review and assemblethe final draft
One way to make the grant proposal submission easieris to leave enough time to finish your proposal. Also, time for editing, reviewing, and submitting it. The step seems obvious. But it is a rush to beat the deadline of submission. When you submit it last minute, you have no time to review it carefully or correct any formattingissues. But how much time do you leave to do the final edits? The complexity and length of the proposal will let you know how much you need. But, generally, give yourself at least two days to complete the last edits and package the proposal for submission.
- Prepare two sets of the final proposal
Once you finish the proposal, get at least two or three copies before moving forward with the submission process. The full proposal should have all the components of the proposal. Plan to distribute copies of the proposal to other team members. If you share with external partners, give them a copy minus any confidential information and the budget. Have at least one copy for the archives. More importantly, as much as having multiple copies is vital, always have a backup
of the original. Plus, ensure you take the step to make copies of everything of the original in case your first submission does not go as planned and you have to resubmit.
- Triple check the submission guidelines
Always re-read the submission guidelines. Read them at the start of the final week and again in the last hours before submission. At the beginning of the process, everyone focuses on the questions, the team members, and the structure. This is natural to have less concern with the submission process. But, to avoid any surprises at the last minute, read the submission guidelines when you have enough time to address them. Double-checking and re-reading are vital, mostly because, during the writing phase, you can not concentrate on submitting finer details.
- Submit the proposal early
Submit the proposal on time to reach the fundersbefore the deadline. But, ensure you do not submit it on the due date. Early submission is vital to have enough time to resubmit if something goes wrong with the submission process. Notably, if it is an electronic submission, remember the size constraints in the email systems. Therefore, consider the size of your attachment and if you will have to make your proposal in smaller files before submission. Plus, when you submit your proposal early, it is one way to reduce the proposal process stress.
- Request feedback from your colleagues and funder
Once you confirm receipt of the proposal. It is timeto get feedback in concern to your grant application. After submitting, you may receive the grant or not. Regardless of whether you get the funds or not. You did some things better than other applicants in the proposal process. Thusstart with your colleagues and get the feedback of the proposal experience while it is still fresh for everyone. Avoid waiting until you know your fate, for it can take months. So, schedule a meeting shortly after submitting the proposal and discuss what you can improve, what went well, and what did not go well. Take notes of this feedback you will implement in the next proposal effort. Also, request feedback from the funder, they may not have the time to meet you in person, but it is worth exploring. However, others offer written feedback which you should be grateful to have.