Do More Faster: Templates and key metrics to get Grant Ready Today w/ Matt Hugg

What if you could do grant-prep once, for just about every proposal you wrote? Wouldn’t it be cool if you could have less stress, be more efficient and focus on what’s important on that next application? Yes, it’s totally possible. Do More Faster will focus on building a one-stop-shop for your grantwriting prep.

In this 1 hour special workshop hosted by Instrumentl, we’ll discuss what background information and more to have right at your fingertips, so you get to what’s really important – describing the great program that needs funding, today!

By the end of this one-hour workshop, you’ll be able to:

  • ​See why funders want this information
  • ​Have a list of information to gather to answer the most requested background information sought by funders
  • ​Understand the rationale for each piece of information gathered to justify obtaining the data from staff, board and volunteers

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Matt Hugg is an educator, eLearning specialist, online trainer, and CEO at NonprofitCourses (your on-demand, online educational resource for nonprofit leaders, staff, board members and volunteers).

Instrumentl Partner Webinars are collaborations between Instrumentl and its community partners to provide free educational workshops for grant professionals. Our goal is to tackle a problem grant professionals often have to solve, while also sharing different ways Instrumentl’s platform can help grant writers win more grants. Click here to save a seat in our next workshop.

Click the video link below to start watching the replay of this free grant workshop, or check out the transcriptions below the video.

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Do More Faster: Templates and key metrics to get Grant Ready Today - Grant Training Transcription

Celia: Hi everyone. How are you doing today? I'm so excited to see you all, welcome to, "Do More Faster: Templates and Key Metrics to Get Grant Ready Today with Matt Hugg. So this workshop is being recorded and slides will be shared with you afterwards. So definitely keep an eye out for a follow up email later in the day, in case you wanna review anything or share any of those with colleagues or friends or anyone else. Before I do the introductions, I just have a quick poll that I wanna throw out there for you all. And this is just we're collecting some information on you all, trying to understand what's top of mind for all of you so that as we continue this kind of webinar series, we are making sure we're hitting key points. So go ahead and fill that out as I run through introductions here. So in case you are new to this, I am Celia, and I run these Instrumentl partner webinars. So essentially these are collaborations between Instrumentl, us, and our community partners to provide some free educational workshops and information for grant professionals.

And also non-profits, right? So our goal is to tackle a problem that grant professionals are having and share some different ways that we can think about that and solve those issues. We will also tell you a little bit today about Instrumentl and how we can use that to kind of do more faster and speed this process up and get a little bit more organized.

Instrumentl is the institutional fundraising platform. We are bringing prospecting, tracking and management into one place in order to save people a lot of time. Our users find that on average they are saving about three hours a week while still increasing their grant output. So when we get to that place, I will drop a link in the chat.

Feel free to follow along. I do have a special link for you today. That'll give you 14 days free of using Instrumentl. So you can try it out and see if it'll work for you. [Crosstalk] A little other housekeeping. We do have time for Q&A. So if you have questions, drop them in the chat, just make sure you add three hashtags before those questions, it'll make it a lot easier for me to find them. We'll make sure we don't miss your question. I've also dropped that in the chat so you can see what that looks like. Okay. Cool. So with all of that out of the way, it looks like we've got 72% of our participants answering our poll. Very interesting. The vast majority of you are not using a grants calendar.

So that's interesting. And let's see, "What's your least favorite part of the grant application to write?" 

Matt: Wait, wait, wait. Not the favorite, the least favorite?

Celia: I wanna share this with you, Matt. I think you'll enjoy this, least favorite: Budget. Budget's up there, for sure.

 People love writing budgets. What are you talking about? Yeah. So thank you so much for answering those questions for us today. I'm taking some screenshots... 

Matt: Very interesting point here is that future funding sustainability is also up there. And, I find the classes I teach that is, yeah, people don't like budgets and all that, and I get that, but the future funding is really hard for people to figure out. 

Celia: Yeah. Interesting. Very interesting. Oh, Carissa. Are you one of these people who loves a budget then Carissa, since you thought it was your favorite and not your least favorite? Tell us what you actually thought, Carissa. Heck no, that's funny. Alright. So with all of that, out of the way we will get started.

I don't wanna eat any more of this time. So. I am so excited today that we have Matt Hugg with us. Matt Hugg is an educator, an e-learning specialist, an online trainer, and he is also CEO of Nonprofit Courses. And if you haven't checked that out, you should, because it is your on demand, online educational resource for non-profit leaders, staff, board members, and volunteers.

So Matt, so excited to have you today. I'm gonna go ahead and pass this over to you. Take it away.

Matt: I like it. Cool. By the way, nonprofit.courses, just like .org and .com. Just so you find the right thing. 

Celia: Yeah. 

Matt: So what we're gonna do here is... well, we've already shared in the zoom chat. Now, here we go. So we're gonna talk about doing more faster using templates, and key metrics and things like this. I'm just gonna jump right in. I think you'll understand where we're heading with this. But let's just do that. So where are we going? First of all, an informative intro, right? That's what we're in now. We're gonna talk about what you can gather and why, things not to do, a little bit of a summary of what we covered.

Then Celia's gonna jump in a bit about how Instrumentl fits in. By the way, freebies, there is a checklist. So you don't have to furiously scribble, take notes if you want, right? But you'll get a checklist and that'll have a list of everything I'm talking about here, and that should make your life a little bit easier.

That's why I put it together. And talk a little bit about nonprofit.courses as well. So a big thing to keep in mind, straight off, for any time you're working on a grant proposal, and I'm a big believer in this, is to look at everything from your funder's point of view. And that doesn't mean that your side of things is unimportant, it's their money, they're giving it away.

But the money they're giving away isn't for you. And what do I mean by that? In other words, they're giving it away to help fulfill their mission right now, foundations, businesses that give away money, people who give away money have their own vision and mission. They want to accomplish something with whatever their charitable gift is doing.

And they're giving it as an endorsement of your programs, but it's like a Venn diagram, right? You have to see where your programs and mission crosses over with theirs. And the closer those two circles come together, the better a fit it is. And so always look at this from their point of view and how you can help them fulfill your mission too. By the way, they're not interested in your, the name of your organization or who you are in terms of the personnel people. What they're interested in is the people you serve. I call them mission recipients, but they can be alumni, clients, patients, students, whatever it is, whoever you are serving, they want to help them.

So that's your common goal is to do that, and if you cross over, you're good. And they stake their reputation on your success. So what's that mean? That, obviously if you do good, they look good, but it also comes down to a personal level because you're dealing with people, and if you're dealing with a program officer maybe in a bigger foundation or something, then they have a job on the line and their success, how they are looked at in the organization. It really stands on how well you do with whatever you are being tasked to do with their grant money. So make sure you work with them. Don't treat them like demi gods out there, they're people, develop that relationship. That's really important. So what do they want to know? They wanna know, are you competent? Now in the classes I teach, I talk a lot about being expert versus well intended. Foundations, particularly, deal with a lot of well intended people. You don't wanna be that, you wanna be an expert.

You want to show that you know exactly what you're talking about in the field that your mission serves. So it's really important that when you collect information, that we're gonna talk about here, that you are showing your expertise in whatever it is you're doing. They wanna know whether you're financially stable and whether your leadership is stable.

Worked a lot of time in higher education, and whenever we were between presidents, terrible time to go to foundations, raise money, do other things because people wanted to know is the next person going to take you in a different direction, so showing that you are stable financially, because obviously they don't wanna throw good money after bad.

And that the leadership is going to continue the direction that you are proposing they go. Can you be trusted? This is huge. I've said for a long time, if mideast peace and a nonprofit scandal were to happen on the same day in your community. I'll bet the nonprofit scandal will get the newspaper headline.

They really are risk averse, any funder is, when dealing with a nonprofit. And so you have to be able to assure them that you are trustworthy, that you have a good reputation and that you communicate with integrity. And of course they want to know, can they work with you? And that gets back to what I said about not treating them like God's, but also not ignoring them.

They want a partnership. I have time and time again spoken to executive directors of foundations or whatever they call themselves at top level. And they are all about having a partnership and working with you to help you accomplish your mutual goals. So that's important to keep in mind. The whole purpose of what we're doing today is so that you invent the wheel.

once, not every time you go through a new grant proposal, right? So you're gonna get background information that you can use save once and then, iterate out several times. Being able to nail this down quickly and efficiently is gonna be a huge help because it's just gonna save you time so you can get to the core of what you wanna do for your proposal.

Alright. So some caveats, first of all, not all funders are gonna ask for the items we're talking about here and, or they might want something completely different. I really tried to think about all the different angles on what a funder might use, pulled from my experience, pulled from the experience of the students I've talked to in my classes, and, by the way, the I've talked about grant writing particularly for, gosh, almost 10 years at Thomas Edison state university in New Jersey, but also as part of a bigger course at other universities, plus my own work in it. And it's really important that you just... if something's not on this list, just add it to the list, not a problem.

Some of these items may be considered sensitive. Nobody ever asked for a budget of your organization or that maybe they think that something is an HR issue or whatever it is. We're gonna get into some of that as we move along here, just keep in mind, you wanna assure people that this is good and right for them and for you, for the people to get it and collect it all in one place.

You might have an electronic folder and a set of physical files and just make sure that everything's always together for you. Alright. Now, you might find that something's not available. Get yourself a sheet and put it in, whether it's in the computer file, a document or an actual piece of paper and say why it was unavailable.

Maybe it's sensitive and it's not available to you right now, but it's promised for whenever you need it. So you just put it at the president's office, you know it is available upon request and done. So make sure you get that in there. And then also assure people that you're only going to distribute this to funders with internal approval.

So you're not just doing the wild west thing and going out and throwing this information out to anybody. It goes through a set of processes and that, people will be assured it's being used the right way and that you gotta review these items at least once a year, maybe quarterly, semi-annually, whatever it is.

Because things are gonna change. Budget's gonna change, personnel goes in and out, that kind of thing. So you wanna make sure you're always up to date on the latest here. Alright. So where do we start? Start with the basics, we're gonna start with your official name. Now. Look at point number two. DBA.

I've just... somebody, an organization I work with just changed their name and they have one of these old timey, you know, turn of the 1800, 1900 names of "Society for..." and all that kind of stuff. They've updated their name. So that is now their DBA, right? Or fictitious name, depending on the state you're in, they officially registered it.

So you might be, the society for whatever, but doing business as, whatever your new name is. Make sure you include both. You don't want anybody to have the impression that, oh, who is this? We looked them up. We can't find them, whatever it is, that, and this is perfectly legitimate legal thing to do, organizations change names for a variety of reasons.

And folks I'm working with have very good reasons. Their last, their old name spoke to something very specific and they do very much more than that now. So they got a name that reflected that, but you wanna make sure you have that. Vision and mission statements. There can be confusion between them, right?

But a vision is how you see the world. Whatever you are doing, the problem was addressed, and the mission is how you're going to go about making that vision happen. Put 'em both in. Talk about your founding year, right? Always a nice thing to put in, even if you're new that's okay, gotta be up front with that...

And full mailing address versus street address, if you have a PO box or something, and that's your mailing address, versus where you are, make sure you put both of them in, again, that transparency thing, like the name of the DBA. But basic stuff that I'm sure everybody will want. Now leaders and supporters.

This is this, this is good but you're gonna... it'll be interesting in how you work with us. So obviously you're gonna want the executive directors, CEO, president, whatever they call themselves, contact name, title, email, phone number. That's really important, because for a lot of organizations or a lot of funders, the proposal is officially coming from that person.

You may be the staff contact, but they wanna know who's in charge and how to get a hold of them if they need to. List of board members. These are your directors, trustee board, whatever you call them, and their day to day, job title. That's pretty important. Now you might also have emeritus board members or honorary board members.

You can include those or not as you want. I had a situation one time, we were going to a tobacco company. That's not true. We were going to a food company that happened to own a tobacco company. And we had on our emeritus board, somebody who was a very highly prominent cancer researcher, who was and we decided just to name the board members themselves and not the honoree or emeritus board members just to avoid issues.

I don't know if that was a good decision or not. Happened 20, 30 years ago. But, the point is though that, we wanna look at this carefully, do not leave anybody out. Specifically, if they draw a circle around a board member set, that's fine. But you wanna list everybody who is a board member. Advisory board members, also, that might be a good idea. These are people who you call up for advice, advisory, or they have a non fiduciary responsibility, but are connected with your organization. Leadership staff members. That's important because especially, if you are a startup or haven't been. In business for a while, these lists are really important in that regard, particularly leadership staff members, because you might say the organization's only been in existence for a year, but they have people in their leadership who have been with this kind of thing, or who have great experience for 10, 20, 30 years. That can make a difference. So look at leadership staff members, and of course their job titles, maybe even a little description about their background, I think that's going to be helpful. Same with your executive director.

And some will ask for your top five to 10 donors, purpose of their gift, and the amount. Now, that can be sensitive information in an organization, and this might be, and it also will change year to year who your top five or 10 are. But this is a way of somebody looking and saying, who is endorsing the organization with their money.

Who's putting their money where their mouth is. And that could make a difference when somebody looks at your application. Alright. Pop quiz. Why do funders wanna know who else gives you money? Celia, what do you think? So are they nosy? They just wanna brag about that, right?

 They wanna see who else is risking their reputation on you? Yeah. Or they wanna contact them and check you out. Yeah. Oh, we got, oh, this is great. Love to see these things. This what nobody thinks they're nosy or wants to brag? Come on.

Celia: The... 

Matt: I know people on a board who would be nosy. Totally. 

Celia: That's a good one. 

Matt: Alright. 

Celia: Alright. We got 63% of participants answering. Let's see, can we get it to 65? One more percent? 

Matt: Let's go, go, go! 

Celia: Couple more guys. There we go. 

Matt: There it is, 65%. 

Celia: Cool. 

Matt: Alright. Let's see. So people are thinking about the risk of reputation or contacting to check you out.

Answer is both, either. It really is that they will wanna contact somebody to check you out. That's totally possible, but they also wanna see who else risked their reputation and had a successful experience. And this is very important to them because they are also gonna put their reputation on the line.

And so one might lead to another, they're gonna say, okay, who risked their reputation, then they'll go call them to check you out, to see how that all went. So as our mothers would tell us, our reputations precede us, and that's important to keep in mind. Alright. Names of other foundations that support your organization.

And this gets back to what we just talked about, right? Foundation's chief executive, the program officer, the amount granted, title of the program and just the line that kind of says what that grant was for. You'll want... Now, when you pull together this list, you'll wanna dump everything in this, but then when you actually provide that list, you're gonna look at, what comes closest to the kind of program that you are asking for that you've got money previously for. So if you got 20 grants on the list, maybe you pick out five or 10, then whatever their application wants and pick the ones that are closest to their program, or honestly, the ones that have the highest name recognition, the highest visibility. If you got money from Kellogg, Kresge you know, Robert Wood Johnson, whoever, if it's some locally known organization, you'll wanna put those names in, in that application, but all of those and more should be on this list that you're going to build to be able to pick from. Okay, the same thing goes with government grants. Now from whom, how much, program purpose and the primary governmental contact, and it's for the same reasons. Now government grants tend to be a little different. They're usually free for service, right? Unless government grants come in three ways, I think, you can apply to an agency and that's usually a fee for service. So if you are applying for a head start grant and they give you money, they expect you to put on a head start program, right? Then there's the legislatively appropriated grant that are the ones that are that somebody you lobby with your congressmen or, representative or something, and they may put it in a bill, otherwise known as pork, right? And then when that bill passes then you get that money. That's fine. Or you get at least the opportunity to spend the money and then charge back to the government for that. It's usually how government money works. Or that you get walking around money, which is like here in Pennsylvania. I think every legislator has some cache of funds that they can give out in their district.

And it's usually smaller, that's another opportunity. You definitely want to get the standard agency grants on this list. If you have any legislative appropriated grants, that's a super thing. List those, you may or may not pull them for use in your work, but then also if you have the walking around money thing. That would be fine too. Again, you're making the list so that when the application comes up, you have things to pull out of so that you can easily and quickly go and fill out that part of the application. And again, the same rules apply. Make sure that, if it's a known government agency, or if it's a program that closely matches what they're doing, that's where you wanna go first.

Okay. Profile of typical mission recipient. Like I said, clients, students, patients, whatever you call the people who benefit from your services. Now, this is really good for a lot of reasons. What you should have this, your marketing people, if you have a marketing area, or your just general fundraisers, would benefit a lot from having the same information, where do they live? What kind of education, race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, religion, other descriptive data, right? Demographic data that describes the people you are serving. This is, this is important because it's going to get down to that match between you and the foundation we'll say, that you're hoping to get money from because they're targeting specific populations and they wanna see that you are doing the same, or if this is a new population for you, that you understand what they are. One of the things that I feel really strongly about, and I've observed over time is that many, not all, certainly, I'm trying not to generalize too much here, but I have seen so many times where people who work for an organization, or particularly, the people who write grants for them are not, as I call, in the head of the people they serve, of the folks who are their mission recipients.

What's it like to be homeless? What's it like to be disabled one way or another? I worked with an organization that ran a pretty sizable home for people who, at one point in their history... gosh, I forget, it was a terrible description. Anyhow, the point is, they had spinal cord injuries and other things that rendered them, basically, not able to move very much.

 They took every, I don't know, year, at least, every staff member had to go through an experience where they did their job in a wheelchair. And that really got them into the heads of the people they serve. I had a student who worked with a homeless organization who every year had to go through this homeless program where they lived on the street for a night. Now, I don't expect you to necessarily do that.

But try to gather and show that you are an expert in the people that you work with, not just well intended. Okay, this is... a lot of people find this comparison interesting. So if you were to list the competitors with your organization, I don't know. Let's just say you work with ... you're in higher education.

Cause that's where this came up for me. And I worked at a college and they said, oh our competitors are that college , that college, that college. And they were all in the same athletic conference. But when you went to the admissions office, you said, "Well, okay. So if somebody doesn't go to school with us, where do they go?"

Oh they'll go to the community college, or they'll go to this public school. It was a private, higher ed. They go to that public school instead, or, whatever it was. So those weren't really... The athletic conference wasn't a competition, because somebody wasn't saying, I'm gonna go to this one or the same one, the same conference or whatever it is that you think that's just like you, those were comparators.

Those were the organizations that people you might compare yourself against, but your competitors could be very different. So maybe you focus on homeless services, and if somebody goes to you, that's great. But if they're not coming to you, they might go to a multifunctional social service agency that not only deals with homelessness, but provides clinics and food banks and all the rest.

So that might actually be your competitor, where your comparator might be the homeless services agency in another part of town. So you wanna gather both, where your mission people are going, and what other organizations are like you, and make that distinction between comparators and competitors. And of course the basic information, name, address, primary contact and where the programs overlap.

Okay. 990s. I would hope that most people know that 990 is the nonprofit tax form. And so you'll want to gather the most recent year and three years before that. You'll usually find this in some public sources, like Guide Star Candid, right? But remember, though, that maybe you go to Guide Star Candid, that information is probably two years old, because the public filings only come out, are accessible to them... they're lagging. So you might have to go to your business office or somebody like that, your accountant to get the most recent, because that's where you want to report. Now, if you don't file a 990 because you're exempt or maybe you're new, then just get the documentation that shows that you are exempt, or get the whatever it is that says, Hey, we're new, we're applying, but you have to show paper that kind of addresses the, this form or equivalence to this form. And by the way, and this and especially the 990, actually, just to say that. Think of the 990.

Yes. It's an accounting form. It is also a marketing document. So there's all that area down below where it says, talk about your mission and things like that. Make sure that if you're communicating with whoever fills this out, that you have that section filled out in a way that positively, or at least appropriately, states what you do, and consider that's your marketing opportunity.

Cuz people are gonna look at that and wanna understand more about you. But yeah, then because you are presumably a C3, you're going to get a document from the IRS, again, your business office may have this, that talks about the fact that you were issued this C3 status. You'll also wanna find a copy of your organizing document.

Or articles of incorporation. I got a couple links here that explains your 10 23 paperwork. And here's an IRS link here for you too, that explains what the articles of incorporation are, but have those so that again, you can provide those. You don't get a lot of requests for this, but sometimes you do and you wanna have it handy.

Okay. Financial review or compilation. This is important because a lot of state charitable regulators want you, if you are a certain size organization, to have a full audit every year, otherwise you might be asked for a review of, or compilation of, your financial statements, financial review is the audit and you wanna have that made available, but this also may be something that could be sensitive, that people don't necessarily want to give out, or have it made public.

I'm not gonna talk about whether that's good or bad, I tend to err on transparency's sake. But regardless, this might be a place where you're gonna put a piece of paper in your file, saying, "I get it from..." And like I said, the review is a full audit versus a compilation, usually smaller nonprofits, $25,000 or less, or 250 or less or something, that goes through and makes sure that everything's done right.

But this is key. A CPA makes no assurance that the records are accurate. They just go with what you give them. And there are no risk controls against embezzlement or fraud. If you are small and want to assure people that you're doing it right, it might be worth it to pay for a full audit, like the big guys get.

But if you don't want to, or beyond you, just make sure that you get a compilation so that you show you're doing your due diligence. And then here's a source you can go to for that. Good budget. Now, okay. This is not the budget for the program for which you are applying. This is the organization's budget.

You shouldn't have to make this up. This should already be in place right? Now, again, there could be some sensitivity to this. It could be that somebody thinks that's a private document. If nothing else, get a high level summary, and if that's not sufficient, the foundation will tell you it's not sufficient.

They wanna see more detail. And you can bring that up, but, this is important because when they say, you can tell an organization's priority by looking at their budget, and they want to see what's in your budget so they can see that whatever you are pitching to them, by way of overall programs, is at least some priority.

It has a space in your budget, or not, and that might be fine. Your bylaws, right? Internal set of documents that describes how you run your nonprofit, kinda like an operating manual. So again, grab a set of bylaws. This might be something you're gonna find in the president's office or people may have pulled it together when they were incorporating the organization overall.

It exists. Look for it, put it in the file. Now, the annual report. This is... that phrase just generates a lot of confusion in the nonprofit world. So if you were to look at your business officer type person, CFO, they're gonna say, oh that's your audit or your compilation.

That's our annual report. If you look at your program people they're gonna say, oh yeah, that's how many people we served and how we did it, and all the stats on that. If you go to your fundraisers, they're gonna say, oh, it's a report of donors. That's our annual report. Get 'em all, get 'em all. If they're separate, that's great. If somebody has had the foresight to combine them, which is a really good idea from a marketing point of view. But if you have, if you can get the combination, that's great. But you want to have some kind of annual report and be able to provide that. And by the way, it also varies by way of length  and format, some of these are gonna be like, three or six panel brochures, and some are going to be slick booklet kinds of things that have all sorts of pictures and graphics. And some are just gonna be a paper document stapled in the corner that you give out when somebody asks for it.

Again, whatever you have, get it in that file. Oh, another quiz. So do you need permission from a state to raise money in that state? What do you think?

Ooh, now we have people in all three categories. I love it. 

Celia: It's getting interesting. 

Matt: And one category, I'll bet I could tell you where some people are from.

All right. 62 65. Alright.

Celia: I think we're good. Alright. 

Matt: Alright, so the answer is maybe. Maybe. Yeah. That's not satisfying either. So there's a bit of where you're from, that has to do with your answer here. And what I mean by that, is that 37 of our 50 states in 53 territories or something, or, 53 of the territories, require some kind of documentation that registers you with them to raise money in that state.

A lot of 'em don't and the nature of that documentation is different from state to state. So some may say that for any kind of fundraising of any sort whatsoever, you need to be registered. Your nonprofit status doesn't count. You additionally need to be registered with us. Some might say the same, except you know what?

We don't count grant proposals, and we don't count direct mail letters. Or they count direct mail, but not grant, whatever it is. They might have certain areas they don't count, and others just have no regulations at all. Now, it is not a hundred percent true, but the further west you go in the United States the more you tend not to need this, but that's not necessarily the case, especially in the far west.

And there are a couple states here in the east that don't require it either. But you'll want to check this out and see if you need permission. I'm gonna check my next slide. Yes. Okay. Fundraising registration, like I said, here, some require you to have this. If your own state requires it, you ought to have it.

There may be some exemptions by type of organization. If you are a higher ed, some states will exempt higher ed or fire companies or whatever like that. You can check that out. You want to see if you need to be registered in the home state of the grantor. We're a little tighter packed here in the Northeast.

So if I'm asking for money in New Jersey, which would be, just like less than an hour's drive away, I probably need to register in New Jersey as well as Pennsylvania. And then, if you want to see if your state and other states require it, if you are not familiar, go to this link and check out or Google the Charleston Principles.

Also Harbor Compliance has some interesting stuff on this, but the Charleston Principles basically say that if you actively raise money someplace, you need to be registered, if it's required in that place. But if somebody just sends you money from that place, don't worry about it. Now, if you turn around after you've gotten that money and go ahead and solicit them, now you gotta register in that other place.

So read the Charleston principles, get legal advice. I'm not giving you legal advice. I'm just giving you my kind of offhand interpretation of it and make sure that you understand this with your counsel, whoever that is, either accounting or law. Alright. Certificates or endorsements. These are really good to have.

This brings you from, like we said, the well intended to the expert, particularly in your governance and how you are working as an organization. Some really good ones here, Wise Giving Alliance that has... all these have... and when you get the copies of the slide, you'll see that I have links here for you.

But these are all good ones to work with. You wanna raise that flight Standards of Excellence. People don't know about that program. It's really good. It's based outta Maryland, but it's nationwide. At least most states work with it. It's usually your state nonprofit association that has some plug into this and it's a set of things,

and usually some classes you go through on governance and how to run nonprofits, but whatever badge, and this is just an example. Badges sealed, it could be your local chamber of commerce, whatever it is, that you want to make sure that you have that information in your file and use it for marketing because this, especially for younger organizations and small organizations, can be gold.

This is really good. Cuz it shows you're taking what you're doing seriously. Same thing with organizational memberships. Now this might be a little harder to nail down because you might have a little bigger staff. You might have people all over the place who belong to all sorts of organizations. See if you can collect those names as best you can.

Right? AFP is the one that always comes to mind for me. There's a grant professionals association. There's state nonprofit associations, your local chamber, faith affiliated groups, and the National Catholic Development Conference. You see them right here, city gate, and then others that may be with your mission, if there's a national organization for zoos and or environmental ed centers, or, whatever it is.

But collect all those as best you can and have it so that you're able to put that on applications. Again, it's a nice endorsement to show that you have interest in standards, cuz chances are, if you're a member of the organization that has standards like the fundraisers ethics statement for AFP or the donors, bill of rights, things like that.

Okay. If you don't know and you probably do, make sure that you get it the organization's employer identification number, or otherwise those a tax identification number. It, like I say here, it's just like your own social security number, except it's tagged to the organization.

 They'll want this just as a unique identifier for your organization. I used to consult to an organization that had an extremely similarly named organization, one in Philadelphia, and then the other one was in Delaware. I worked in a Philadelphia group. The EIN really could make a difference in helping sort out that confusion.

Your nonprofit should have an NTEE code, right? Like it says here, three character letters, that general description you don't need to create, ask your business officer, check that out. And then here's a reference for the list here on the bottom. Gather policies. If you don't have policies, get policies, make policies, right? Especially these are all, non-discrimination policies, research policies, conflict of interest. You know, you can read the list here, right? But you want people to know that folks who are funding you, the foundations that you are taking seriously, that you are operating a real organization.

Having policies is part of that. So make sure that you have these in place and can pull 'em out quickly to be able to use them. A lot of times, these are found with whoever works with your board because the boards typically have to approve these. Marketing materials, right? Sample publicity samples, brochures, website pages, promotional materials, links to videos and podcasts, have that handy, have it someplace that you can pull out as needed. And now there's a bit of a copy of this one. Do it in a second. If you have a story bank, I encourage you to build a story bank of interviews with people who would benefit from your mission because that will be helpful, not only for this, but for other things. Case for support, if your fundraising office doesn't have one, they need to have one, why people should be supporting your organization, and then just have descriptions of your nonprofit in these levels here. So that you can just pull out the one you need really quickly. Okay. Income metrics, right? How much money are you getting for fundraising?

How much for government income endowment income, quasi endowment. What's quasi endowment? That is... sorry. That is money that, let's say you have extra money at the end of the year. Yeah, it happens sometimes. You can put that money in a fund that acts like an endowment, but it is board designated endowment instead of donor designated endowment.

So that it acts just like endowment. It spends money back to you, but if you need to get to it, you can get to it faster. You need to get to a real endowment, which is given by a donor, then you have to go to the courts. Usually you work in court and get permission. Put that in. Business income, fee for service income, things that, if you're selling goods and services or whatever, you've gotta have your metrics here.

And then of course, program metrics, cuz this is really what they want to know. Particularly, describe the program, the people that you're serving, the numbers, how much it costs, any income it generates. And that's not a bad thing. I worked with an organization once who charged, maybe it's senior meals, and they charged $2 per meal. It costs 'em a lot more than that. But the people who were beneficiaries felt like, wow, I'm paying for this. It gave them dignity. And it was okay to show on the income form, because it actually was a positive because it got more people to show up cuz they didn't feel like they were getting hit up.

Any external evaluations, if anybody if you've done standards of excellence, you're gonna have external evaluations of your program or those other certificates. But go shop around in your organization to get anytime somebody said, Hey, we have external review, get those, have those handy for yourself.

And okay. So remember I set up before about your publicity information, there are things that foundation funders have told me they don't want, they don't want your emails all the time. Yeah. Obviously you wanna communicate with the head of their foundation because you've got the grant and that's great.

You need to do that, but don't put them on your mailing list. They don't want to get your annual reports unless they ask for it. You might ask, do you want these, do you want to be, get these things. They might actually express an interest, but time and again, I've had executives at foundations.

Tell me, oh my gosh, we get all this mail and we don't want any of it. And they ended up recycling. So get their permission before you send it. But yes, keep their name in the database. Just don't send 'em all the stuff. Alright. So what did we learn here? We learned a lot, I think. Funders are interested in fulfilling their mission first.

That's huge. You wanna give them stuff that helps them make that decision. They're putting their reputation at risk, these documents that you're gathering, give them insight into your process, right? They give you confidence. They want to reduce their risk by working with you. That's really important. This is huge.

They want to reduce their risk. They don't want to be out there with a problem because they did this. So they're looking to see how they can make this risk free for themselves. Now it's gonna take time to get all this together. No doubt about that. But once you do, this is really gonna help you. So I really encourage you to pull these things together.

I got that list. The checklist is gonna help you with this. I am losing my voice. Alright. Good time for Celia to take over. 

Celia: That works out. I think we planned that well. Awesome. So thanks Matt. I think there were a lot of really good points in your presentation on just getting organized.

And so that is really what is at the core of what we're doing in Instrumentl as we really we are all about planning ahead. We're really all about getting proactive with your grant search versus being so reactive with your grant search. So a couple things I think to know here. First of all, I did drop a just a link in the chat.

If you want to sign up for 14 days and see how Instrumentl can help you become more proactive. But essentially what you're gonna find with Instrumentl is that you have all your grant prospecting, tracking and management in one place. And so what does that mean? If you're starting out and you're trying to figure out how you're gonna do more with maybe a limited team, or you're just beginning to diversify your funding strategy.

Go ahead and set up that 14 day free trial and see what's in there. First of all, you'll get only active opportunities. So you won't be spending a bunch of time looking at things that aren't relevant or that you can't go ahead and apply for today. And then beyond that, that algorithm's gonna work for you.

So you can set that up and then just set it and forget it. Get back to doing what Matt was talking, pulling all of your templates together, all of that key information. And once you have it Instrumentl will have been going through all the sort of 12,000 plus opportunities on the site and pulling things out.

So you're ready to go. Within Instrumentl, you will also find that you can track everything. So what does this all mean? Well, it means folks are saving about three hours a week on grant prospecting, tracking, and management while still increasing their output by about 78%. So I am going to really quickly take over the screen share and just show you a couple of things here.

Within the Instrumentl platform so that you can hit the ground running once you set up your 14 day free trial, I'm also just going to drop that link one more time in case you wanna follow along with me, go ahead and get yourself signed up. But essentially the first thing that you need to know here is that this is going to be all your matches in this funder opportunity matches section that's, everything that's active and open.

And you can filter through here and click on some things. If you need a little bit more information about one of these opportunities really quickly, you can kind of see you know, what are they working on? What's the overview? Am I eligible and you can answer those questions. I also wanna point out this 990 report, cuz this is I think, where the meat is here.

Within here we have all of this information that normally would pull off a 990s, but beyond that, we are actually visualizing it for you. So you can see these trends. And I know we've talked a lot in the past on these webinars about the importance of looking at trends of funders, instead of just thinking about a single data point.

I like to use the example of 2020 during COVID. A lot of these foundations switched over and were doing funding related to the pandemic, but that may not be what they do all the time. And so when we're looking at that multi-year data, we're getting a much better picture of who this organization really is.

We can also see things in here, like past grantees, where are they located and then to Matt's earlier point, we can even see it by NTEE code. Who are they giving to? And do you fall in here? Do you match this funder? Once you've decided that this is a good opportunity, you can save that to your tracker as researching, and now it's all in there for you.

If I go into my tracker, I can see everything. I can just filter by researching. That may be where we're starting out. And I can see what's on the docket. How do I wanna get my tasks set up? Once I have those templates set up, that Matt was talking about, I can drop those all in here in my document section, and now my whole team can see what we're doing at the same time.

So that is a little bit about Instrumentl. I'm just gonna pop back over into our slideshow here and show you and just wrap it up here. So if you do sign up with that free trial today, you're getting a look at our standard plan. So this is great. Cause you get a little bit more functionality.

I would really recommend you taking advantage of that kind of while you have the option. If you learn something new today, we would love to see you again. We do these webinars basically weekly. So you can sign up using this. That's the wrong thing. Sorry about that guys.

You can actually sign up for any upcoming events using this link right here that I just dropped in the chat. And. We hope to see you again on one of these webinars soon. And then if you want those templates that Matt was talking about today, make sure you go ahead and sign or, and, and fill out our kind of feedback form.

Give us a little information on whether or not you enjoyed this, and we will automatically send you both Matt's templates that he was referring to. So all that information in one place that you can throw out any notes that you took and have it all organized for you today. And then also we will send you our 10 lessons from 10 grant writing experts.

So once you get set up, you can hit the ground running. You'll have all of those kinds of level up tips in your inbox. Let's get to Q&A, we've got a couple of minutes and we'll run through just a few of these. Yeah. 

Matt: If we go over, that's fine with me. Respect people's time, but 

Celia: yeah.

Yeah. Alright. So we've got a question on... let's see, talk about maybe the pros and cons of shared documents versus maybe keeping them unshared. 

Matt: Yeah. If you can get people to contribute to a shared file like this, that's great. It's not a problem on a shared drive. Now, I think we're talking about internally sharing as opposed to doing it you know, sharing with people outside the organization. If you're, I wouldn't necessarily share with a foundation, you wanna keep within their, whatever their parameters are. And within their application. Okay. But internally, yeah, like I said, if you can get people to contribute to it, that's fine.

If you're president or somebody on staff wants to see what you're doing so they can monitor it. Obviously you want to do that, but you might be sensitive to giving them full edit versus viewing privileges so that only one person can change what's in or out.

Celia: Yeah. Okay, great. We had another question.

Aren't all nonprofit budgets supposed to be transparent? This person doesn't understand why that information might be sensitive. 

Matt: Yeah, you would hope, you would think so. But that's not always the case. Nonprofits are private organizations. They are, in many states, not required to share that information.

So while ideally. And I am all for transparency, there might be some sensitivity or some, you reason why somebody doesn't want that out. And so yeah, I hear you. 

Celia: I get it. We have a question from Krista. She wants to know, do IRS determination letters ever need to be updated?

What if they're decades old? 

Matt: Yeah. I have used some pretty old ones, I don't think they do. I'm not a scholar or a professional on that, but I think that they, you're once you're in, unless they take it out. 

Celia: Yeah. Yeah. I'm gonna throw you two more. We'll just do rapid fire here.

The first one is when you apply for general support or general operating funds, and the funder asks for both a project budget and an organizational budget. What is the distinction? 

Matt: Not much, between those, maybe you can draw a smaller circle around the operating if you want to sponsor some particular program within it.

I mean, you can take your operating budget and parse it out into dozens of things, I'm sure. But yeah, that's pretty much the same thing. 

Celia: Okay. And then the last question, is there a difference between bylaws and articles of incorporation? 

Matt: Yes, I believe there is. You should... yes. They're pretty close.

I would check and see. You probably do have both someplace in your application for 501c3. 

Celia: Yeah. Okay, awesome. That's it. Thanks to everyone so much for joining us. Thank you, Matt, for sharing your wisdom. Again, a couple things I'm just dropping in the chat for you.

Go ahead, sign up for 14 days free on Instrumentl and also go ahead and grab those templates by filling out that feedback form. 

Matt: And the template will have the QR code for nonprofit.Courses and really go, I got like 8,000 videos on there. And about 80, 90% of 'em are free. So go check it out.

There's a lot there that you find helpful. 

Celia: Especially if you're new and you're just getting yourself set up. This is a great place to start.

Matt: Yeah. 

Celia: Thanks for joining us. Great. Cool. Thank you everyone. Have a great rest of your week. Bye bye.

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