Knowledge Articles > How Optimising Grant Application Processes Streamlines Reporting

How Optimising Grant Application Processes Streamlines Reporting

Get instant access to Enquire’s free interactive product tours
A grant applicant responding to a phone call

Get Your Grant Application Processes Right and The Rest Will Follow

Every grantor needs accurate and relevant insights from reports on the status, results, and impact of their grant funding. Grantees need to deliver reporting on how funds are used, with further or ongoing funding tied to achieving predetermined goals.

This relationship is one of the most important in building confidence between both parties, ensuring proper use of funds and assessing if program goals are being achieved. But reporting is also one of the most complex and time-consuming tasks.

At Tactiv we work with grant funders to improve the entire grant management lifecycle, including reporting, compliance and performance management. We’ve seen that getting the application process right at the start is one of the best ways to eliminate KPI reporting complexity, ensuring consistency and quality while reducing the time and effort for grant recipients.

This article explores the various ways application data can be reused throughout your grant programs for maximum efficiency and data integrity.

Table of Contents

Establish Clear KPIs throughout your Grant Application Processes

Grant recipients need to understand from the outset what is expected of them. Touchpoints throughout your grant application processes, such as eligibility and assessment criteria, and forms should explicitly reference the desired performance indicators, which need to be clear and concise so both parties understand the information required and their subsequent reporting obligations. By explicitly noting Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)upfront, in the application process, grantors also help potential grantees to self-select more easily. This helps streamline application administration and assessments processes. Grantors can also save time for both parties by focusing application data on the critical KPIs and desired targets, avoiding open ended qualitative reporting or collecting data that is not relevant.

Setting clear program goals at the outset of a grant application is essential for ensuring that the grantee has a clear understanding of the program’s objectives, timelines, and expectations. When the grantee knows precisely what is expected of them, they can better plan their activities, allocate their resources, and work more efficiently towards achieving those goals. By having a clear understanding of the program goals, the grantee can also prioritize their activities and avoid distractions that might steer them off course. This clear focus helps them to stay on track and ensures that their efforts are aligned with the program’s objectives.

A grant manager focused on reporting outcomes

Regular reporting touchpoints play a crucial role in helping the grantee stay on track towards achieving their program goals. These touchpoints provide an opportunity for the grantee to update the grantor on their progress, identify any issues or challenges they are facing, and receive feedback and support on how to overcome them. The regular reporting touchpoints also help the grantor to monitor the grantee’s progress towards achieving their program goals and provide guidance and assistance where needed. Before any grant reaches the reporting step however, it must be assessed, and optimised grant application processes play a critical role here too.

Consistent Assessment

An optimised grant application process can significantly streamline project assessment by making it easier for multiple assessors to review applications quickly and efficiently. Optimisation of the grant application process can include the use of online application platforms, standardised application forms, and clear guidelines for applicants. These optimisations can help reduce inconsistencies in the application review process and ensure that all grant applications are reviewed in a fair and objective manner.

Technology can also play a significant role in streamlining project assessment. For example, grantors can implement an online grant management system that allows multiple assessors to access and review grant applications simultaneously. This system can include features such as collaborative review tools that enable assessors to provide comments and feedback on applications in real-time. It can also allow for the use of automated scoring algorithms that enable assessors to rate applications based on predefined criteria. The use of such tools can help reduce the time and effort required for project assessment, allowing grantors to quickly identify the most promising applications and move them through the funding process.


Sign up now for a free trial of Enquire


Reduce the Reporting Burden

This process is further streamlined when the grantor structures payment milestones linked to the achievement of KPIs, further incentivizing grantees to meet their targets. Grants that involve milestone reporting linked to payments should state this up front, so grantees know how and when data should be reported and how this impacts the overall grant relationship. Linking KPIs to milestones in the application form ensures grantees know before they start what data they need to track and the information they need to submit. Information across reporting periods remains consistent as the KPIs remain the same. Tactiv’s Enquire Lifecycle Management software offers a highly configurable system allowing grantors to establish program KPIs so that data can be aligned and collected automatically. Application forms can include the data fields to capture grantee responses and continue once the grant has been awarded to support milestone and acquittal reporting.

In addition to reducing the reporting burden, focusing on KPIs enables grantors to better evaluate the effectiveness of the program. KPIs provide clear metrics that can be used to measure progress towards program objectives and track outcomes. By collecting and exporting KPI data into reports, grantors can provide stakeholders with insights into the program’s performance, highlight successes, and identify areas for improvement. Data visualization tools, such as a data warehouse integrated with business intelligence tools, can be used to present KPI data in a meaningful way. These tools enable grantors to visually represent KPI data and present it to stakeholders in a clear and concise manner. This visual representation of data can be used to identify trends, outliers, and patterns in the data, helping grantors to better understand the program’s performance and potential impact.


➔ Free Download: Enquire’s Impact Reporting and Performance Measurement Capabilities


Furthermore, the KPI data collected and analyzed in grant reports can be utilized by grantors to inform future grant application processes. By reviewing the KPI data, grantors can identify areas for improvement in the program design and identify grant management best practices that can be incorporated into future program iterations. This can result in more effective programs that produce better outcomes and greater impact.

How To Manage Grant Applications in Enquire

Tactiv consultants offer a wealth of experience in how Enquire can best be configured to ensure application forms support the needs of both parties. Connect with our consultants to streamline your next grant application form to enhance your grant management and outcome reporting.

Tactiv Support Team

About Enquire

Enquire reduces the administrative burden of doing good, while increasing social outcomes. Manage funded projects and social investments with automations and configurable business process workflows to generate impactful outcomes that scale.

Shopping Basket