Two organizations are engaged in efforts to streamline grant application, monitoring, and reporting practices in the public sector and abroad.
National Grants Partnership
The National Grants Partnership (NGP) was established in 2004 to bring together government and non-government individuals with an interest in improving the grants process in the United States. Like Project Streamline, NGP is a collaborative effort of both (government) grantmakers and grantseekers working to streamline the grants process for federal, state, local and tribal funds, make the grants process more efficient, and communicate new developments in applying, accounting, and reporting for grants.
The issues in application and reporting practices for government grantseekers will sound familiar to those engaged in Project Streamline: enormous variability in application and reporting requirements across agencies; problems using the online application system, Grants.gov; and excessive administrative burdens.
To fulfill its goal of improving the management of federal, state and local financial assistance, NGP organizes committees to work on projects that increase the efficiency of the grants process, improve communication in the grants community, and develop funding mechanisms for eGrants systems.
To learn more about the National Grants Partnership and how to get involved, please visit www.thengp.org.
New Philanthropy Capital
Turning the Tables, the newest report from British development think tank New Philanthropy Capital (NPC), calculates that reporting and monitoring requirements cost Scottish charities, on average, six percent of the grant amount awarded. Public grants–from governmental sources–had even higher costs for reporting.
New Philanthropy Capital recommends that nonprofits take a proactive approach to reporting by each creating a standard report to offer to funders. The ultimate goal is to create clarity between a nonprofit and its multiple funders about the information relevant to its mission and future success. A trial run in Scotland of this “standard report” model showed promise in improving the quality of information reported and the communication between funder and nonprofit, as well as reducing the overall time spent reporting. This is great news for those grantmakers and grantseekers who have been inspired by Project Streamline to find solutions to burdensome grant reporting requirements.
Their report also argues for listing estimated reporting costs within grant proposal budgets to funders. This idea has also been proposed by several different grantmakers and grantseekers in Project Streamline sessions and is worth more intensive consideration by funders.
For more information about New Philanthropy Capital and its research report findings, please visitwww.philanthropycapital.org.