Whenever there is an opportunity to apply for a grant which could benefit you or your business it is super important to make sure you are organised and fully prepared before you apply.
Successful grant applicants must meet the grants eligibility criteria. It should also have a strong understanding of the grant’s terms and conditions, the supporting documents that are required and the project approval timelines. You must also allow enough time to prepare, write and review your application well ahead of the closing date before you lodge it.
Here are some tips for maximising your chances of obtaining a grant.
Writing A Grant Application
Obtaining grant funding is no easy task as its application process is highly competitive. Assessors have to review a large number of applications so it is crucial that you submit a clear and concise easy to read application that outlines all the stated requirements.
When you are allowed to it, if you decide to engage with a third party such as a professional writer to assist you with preparing and lodging you must make sure that: any necessary authority forms enabling the third party to represent you are completed and approved by the funding agency. You must also fully understand, approve and authorise any submissions made on your behalf. You also must have allocated enough time to engage the third party in this process to ensure that your application is submitted before the deadline.
Preparing for Your Grant Application
Before you commence writing your application you must; familiarise yourself with the grant funding guidelines, process requirements and the application forms. You must also check the grants eligibility criteria. Read any accompanying documents including; the terms and conditions, application tips and the frequently asked questions.
You should also gather together details of your; products and services, experience and skills, key personnel, proposed budget, a description of your business and your business plan, your project description which includes the aims and objectives of your project. You will also need to outline how you plan to use the grant money.
To increase your chances of receiving the grant it is highly advised that you ask relevant parties to provide, supporting documents such as financials, quotes, budgets and invoices. If there could be questions raised about your financial documentation because it is complicated unusual complicated, perhaps due to a related party or other issues, remember to explain it clearly.
Make sure you have enough time to lodge your application ahead of the closing date, regardless of whether you submit the application yourself or a third party submits it on your behalf.
Writing Your Grant Application
Here are some key tips to help you with creating a logical and easy to read application.
It is advised that you write in a consistent writing style and tone. It is important to use the grants guidelines as a reference to determine what the type of business language you should be using. It is important to avoid conversational language and jargon.
Make sure your language is concise. Make sure your answers and paragraphs are kept short as some applications have word limits.
You should strive to write your application so that it's easily understood by an assessor who may be unfamiliar with your industry.
Make sure you apply consistent formatting which includes; headings and sub-headings to help the assessor quickly review the content and key points. Bullet points to list items such as; project outcomes and benefits, team members and project elements. You can include more information about these things in the paragraphs and supporting documents.
Make sure you have consistent font style and size, line spacing, margins, page numbers, and headers and footers.
It is also important to include keyboards from the guidelines and assessment criteria where it is appropriate. Make sure you write factually and ensure that the information you submit is accurate and audited. There could be serious mistakes if the information supplied is misleading. You should also avoid language that is vague, speculative or words that are emotive such as; believe, expect, hope, may, might or could.
Write unique answers to all the questions in your application. Although some questions might sound familiar, the applications assessor will be seeking new information with each answer submitted.
Be bold and positive in stating what your project will achieve if your application is success but avoid making an exaggerated claim. The assessor will look for realistic outcomes and the claims you make must be substantiated. Acknowledge the likelihood of your projects success and the risks that come with it achieving its aims and how these will be managed.