For most organizations, taking the time to institute formal grants management centralization practices is necessary to improve outcomes and maintain your compliance. When managing grants, organizations need to foster cross-functional communication, to be aware of activities occurring across all departments, to oversee various budgets, and to track performance goals, all while remaining compliant with the various pieces of grant management legislation.
Even for those with a slim grant portfolio, that is an overwhelming amount of work, especially if all tasks are not handled in a way that is process-oriented with a focus on standardization. When combined with the pressures that organizations from State governments to small nonprofits are facing due to a lack of resources in 2022, however, instituting formal processes can seem like something that will have to wait.
In fact, centralizing your practices will help you create capacity, and it is not impossible if you have a plan. Making that plan requires a lot of time and effort, however, and that time and effort would be better spent executing a plan.
We want to help you get a head start on your centralization efforts so you can make measurable progress sooner rather than later.
In general, there are three main pillars that set the stage for formal centralization processes. If you click on any of the hyperlinks below, they will take you to more detailed information so you can work on this when you have the time, and so you have a list to work from that can keep you on track in the meantime. Organizations who want to formalize their grants management processes should first focus on:
- Building out a Central Grants Office with a limited team
- Implementing tactical approaches to achieve your strategic goals
- Designing and disseminating an organization-wide set of grant standards
Formalizing your centralization practices also extends further than just implementing internal processes and adopting tools. After you have your structure in place, you can begin to branch out into instituting processes that are more targeted and specific to their organizations and grant programs. If organizations want to fully formalize centralization, they should also:
- Be mindful of Federal legislation throughout the grant lifecycle
- Keep up to date on policy statements
- Have access to and the ability to post in public portals for reporting purposes
If you’re dealing with a high rate of turnover in your organization, focusing on digital transformation practices may be a more efficient choice for your team. Digital transformation rather than incremental process improvement is a way to rapidly align your team, foster effective knowledge transfer, and create a data-driven organizational culture centered on your grant projects.
Implementing purpose-built technology to help you streamline your processes – with a partner who understands your organization and your grant portfolio – can help your organization respond to challenges quickly and consistently, no matter what comes your way. If you are looking for more support with centralizing and standardizing your grants management processes, please don’t hesitate to reach out.
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