Grantmakers are becoming more comfortable with technology, but many groups still rely on manual and paper-based processes. In addition, foundations that have attempted to harness digital tools still may not be utilizing the best tools available for their business needs for the Automated Grants Process.
The most recent report from the Technology Affinity Group and Grants Managers Network found a significant number of foundations reported that technology is making some sort of impact within their organizations, but only 20 percent indicated the transformation was making a big difference in process improvement. In general, this is due to quick digital fixes and not utilizing the best tools on the market and, thus, outmoded procedures remain to reach havoc on your growth. For instance, 69 percent of respondents indicated their process for grant-making involved a combination of paper and digital processes.
Some foundations are more comfortable using technology than others. However, nonprofits continue to struggle to successfully implement digital tools, like grant and donation management software. According to Idealware, many funders aren’t investing much in technology for grantees. This isn’t because of a lack of willingness, but a perceived lack of knowledge about technology in general.
Grantmakers aren’t always sure how they can do more to help, or how to invest strategically to assist nonprofits in getting technological tools for their own process improvement. Most also don’t realize that there are tools on the market that are built to be user-friendly enough for anyone to log in and build their process.
However, as Idealware states, this investment doesn’t have to be monetary. It could come as the gift of knowledge. Foundations that have knowledge of digital tools for the nonprofit sphere can share their information with grantees, rather than just providing funding. Many of these groups are unaware of the informational resources that exist, like the website TechSoup. Funders may feel as though it’s not their place to recommend solutions, but there could be ways to provide assistance without interfering. Idealware recommends sending out a newsletter once in a while. The great thing is that good grant management systems offer collaboration and communication tools to make this process easy.
The first step for grantmakers is to understand their inefficient processes and prepare their wish list of process improvement items. Next, they need to invest in a grant management platform and provide a good example for other organizations that might be on the fence.
Whether you’re a startup organization or a leading grantmaker, CommunityForce provides fully customizable, all-in-one online grant management solutions to maximize your efficiency, simplify complex processes, and improve collaboration so you can focus on increasing your impact.
We’ve helped countless universities and philanthropic organizations streamline their entire grant-making process, no matter the size and scope of their giving.