effective grantmaker best practices | Submit.com | Best grant management software

Regardless of a fund’s grantmaking capacity, culture or history, there are likely some elements of grantmaking that are unlikely to ever go out of style. Despite digital advancements, the process of conceptualising your mission, assessing your ability to achieve this mission and ultimately deciding which organisations to support has mostly remained unchanged.

However, as the avenues with which a fund chooses to achieve its mission have grown increasingly complex. Modern grantmakers have recognised the need to adapt and use digital solutions to streamline their workflow process.

Especially as their day to day work has evolved into managing a network of public-private partnerships, social impact investing, program-related investing, crowdfunding, and many more.

Effective grantmakers:

  • Make applying easy
  • Use a multiphase submission process
  • Manage communication between stakeholders
  • Utilise data to improve their funds

Make applying easy

Many grant-seeking organisations do not have the time or labour to go through a protracted application process. If a grantee spends $2,000 in time and energy for a $5,000 grant, that limits the effectiveness of the original intention for that particular fund.

Effective grantmakers recognise they must minimise the effort required by grantees. Online application forms must be straightforward. Allow grantseekers to prove why they deserve funding.

Submit.com has simplified this process allowing clients to not only apply at any time and from anywhere. It also lets them present supplementary information as attachments, such as videos, links, spreadsheets and documents.

Effective grantmakers find unique ways to determine the best candidates. Using Submit.com’s powerful video interview technology, they get to know the organisation behind the application.

This allows effective grantmakers to evaluate an application in a more structured manner. All the required information in one secure location on the Submit.com grant management system.

Use a multiphase submission process

Modern grantmakers know there’s no point having an organisation write up a whole proposal, gather a budget, and analyse evaluation metrics if they’re not a good fit for the funder in the first place.

To combat this, they break up application forms into multiple phases allowing their team to pre-screen applications and quickly eliminate ineligible organisations.

With Submit.com, they can create rejection template emails and trigger them automatically to organisations who fail to meet a fund’s requirements.

Multiple phases also allow the grant-seeker to send the most relevant information at each stage of the application. This keeps prospective applicants engaged throughout the process and ensures their team is never overwhelmed during proposal review.

Manage communication between stakeholders

Effective grantmakers fundamentally understand that clear communication is an essential part of the grant management process. However, this is often a lot easier said than done.

Ensuring everyone involved in the process from the non-profit seeking funding to the board of directors who make the ultimate decision know what stage the process is at any one time is no mean feat.

Grantmakers use grant management software like Submit.com to effectively communicate with all stakeholders. Remind lagging applicants to complete their applications, and their email questions responded to all within the app.

When it comes to decision makers, Submit.com presents them with a task-oriented, easy-to-use interface. They can view applications and complete their tasks anywhere from any device. They can even communicate with each other within the app and collaborate to ensure they make the best possible decision.

Utilise data to improve their funds

Transparency encourages accountability. This is especially true when it comes to data. If a grantmaker’s organisation is sharing results with peers and outsiders, it, therefore, makes sense to use software that can customise what information you share, and with whom.

Efficient grantmakers know to manage the grantmaking process internally they need to be able to evaluate incoming data and share resulting data. Identifying gaps or lags early allow grantmakers to react so effective changes can occur on current and future application forms.

Modern grantmakers use grant management software like Submit.com as a way to discover valuable data and ensure continued success for their fund.


Submit.com has spent the past ten years learning from our funding clients the requirements of successful granting processes. Our obsession is our clients’ success, so we are happy to share our experience, knowledge and expertise with you. We leverage this expertise, not by telling you what to do, but by explaining how others have tackled similar projects or achieved similar goals.

It’s unlikely you’ll show us a workflow we can’t streamline. Don’t believe us?

Check out our work updating the labour intensive legacy systems for Government bodies throughout Ireland.

Is it time to streamline your online submission process? Are you interested in more ways to modernise your current workflow? Talk to one of our senior solutions specialists today who will guide you through the process to see if Submit.com is the right fit for you

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