Is Instrumentl Worth It? Grant Management for Nonprofits

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September 2, 2023

Last Updated:

September 5, 2023

Grants are a great way to advance a nonprofit's philanthropic activities and further their mission.

But how do you find these grants? And how can you know if they are a right fit for your organization?

In this article, we will provide an overview of one of the most popular grant discovery and management platforms on the market—Instrumentl. We will explain how Instrumentl works, its key features, and compare it to other grant databases. We will also include real Instrumentl reviews to help you assess whether it is the right choice for your organization.

Let’s dig in.

Overview of Instrumentl


It seems like with every year, there are more and more nonprofits created seeking to change the world. And while it is amazing that so many people want to dedicate their lives to helping others, it can be difficult to find the best fundraising opportunities to support these organizations.

This is where effective grant finding tools—like Instrumentl—come into play.

The Rising Need for Effective Grant Management Tools

As you can imagine, searching for and sorting through grants to find one that is relevant to your nonprofit can take considerable time and effort.

Every grant has different guidelines and requirements, meaning not every opportunity will be a fit your organization. Fortunately, effective grant finding and management tools can help nonprofits simplify and streamline this otherwise overwhelming process.

A good grant search tool allows users to search through a curated database of funding opportunities. The best grant databases even provide helpful filters—like funding location, deadline, amount, and more—to help nonprofits narrow in on the most relevant grants they can apply to.

Rather than combing through a myriad of different search results, a good grant discovery tool works off a carefully curated database to make the grant search process easier and more effective.

By saving time in the research process, grant finding tools also enable nonprofits to focus on submitting successful proposals.

Understanding Instrumentl


Instrumentl is designed to make finding, tracking, and managing grants effortless.

But how does it do this? Let’s take a look.

An Overview of Instrumentl's Platform

Founded in 2014, Instrumentl was built with the goal of helping nonprofits secure more grants through an all-in-one platform. Instrumentl’s comprehensive grant and funder database makes it easy to locate good-fit funding opportunities instantly.

Going far beyond the basics, Instrumentl also combines its extensive grant database with grant tracking and management tools to help streamline and simplify the entire grant lifecycle.

How Instrumentl Streamlines Your Grant Process

There are thousands of different funding opportunities out there—from capacity grants to program grants to matching grants and more.

Fortunately, Instrumentl’s highly curated database makes it easy to search for grants that align with your nonprofit’s mission and funding needs.

Instrumentl Grant Search

But Instrumentl doesn’t stop there.

Once you find a good-fit funding opportunity, Instrumentl provides tools to help you track and manage your grant application. Instrumentl streamlines the entire grant process by letting users store all of their information in one place.

By combining grant discovery, tracking, and management into a single workflow, nonprofits can standardize their grant process, increasing efficiency and saving time.

Discover Your Next Grant

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Analysis of Instrumentl's Key Features


Now that we understand a little bit more about Instrumentl, it is time to delve into its key features in more detail.

Finding New RFPs and Funders

Instrumentl’s grant database is extensive while also being easy to understand.

Instrumentl even provides a Smart Matching tool that constantly scans its database to provide users with grant recommendations based on their missions and programs.

Instrumentl Finding New RFPs and Funders

And once you find a grant opportunity, Instrumentl provides comprehensive funder profiles to help you determine whether the opportunity is worth pursuing.

Instrumentl Openness to Grantees

For example, Instrumentl provides insights into giving patterns, average and median grant amounts, openness to new funders, and more in its user-friendly and easy-to-read 990 snapshots.

Finding active grants and funder profiles has never been easier.

Tracking Prospect Research and Submissions

Instrumentl Tracking Prospect Research and Submissions

When it comes to tracking and managing grants, Instrumentl makes it a breeze.

Instrumentl provides a dedicated grant calendar with email reminders so that you can always keep track of different deadlines for different grants. The ability to store notes and assign tasks within Instrumentl also ensures that everyone on your team is aware of what needs to be done and by when.

You can also easily manage multiple grant efforts in one place, and should a funder change their deadline or priorities, Instrumentl will send you email reminders so that you don’t constantly need to be checking their profiles.

These tracking features allow you and your team to see at which stage each of your applications is at and provides you with the tools needed to create more efficient strategies.

Collaboration and Reporting

Instrumentl Collaboration and Reporting

Instrumentl also offers different collaboration and reporting features.

Instrumentl allows nonprofits to have multiple users connected to one account so that they can collaborate easily. Within Instrumentl, you can assign tasks to make the entire grant application process a lot less overwhelming.

Finally, Instrumentl also makes the reporting process easy thanks to its ability to auto-create RFP and foundation summaries, making them available in PDF or CSV format.

Instrumentl vs. Other Grant Management Tools


Now that we’ve shared about Instrumentl’s key features, it is time to compare it with other grant discovery and management tools to see if it is a platform worth subscribing to.

Identifying the Main Alternatives

When it comes to other grant management tools, other tools that do some of what Instrumentl does are:

Foundation Directory Online, Foundation Search, Grant Finder, and GrantWatch prioritize grant discovery.

By contrast, Fluxx, GrantHub and GrantStation both favor grant management.

A Detailed Comparison: Instrumentl vs. the Rest

As hinted above, one of the things that sets Instrumentl apart from the rest is how it combines both grant discovery and management tools into one intuitive platform.

When it comes to Foundation Directory Online, for example, it doesn’t have as many grant management features. It does not provide users with a grant calendar, submission tracker, nor does it allow users to manage their grant pipeline through multiple stages. Although it allows for some multi-user collaboration and users to reverse search for funders, reviews have stated its information on active RFPs is sometimes limited.

By contrast, Fluxx provides users with some management tools, including a grant calendar and the ability to save prospects and manage the grant process through multiple stages. However, Fluxx does not provide its users with much information on active RFPs. Nor does it have a matching tool like Instrumentl does.

Similar to FDO, Foundation Search provides fundraisers with the ability to examine funder profiles. However, it also does not feature a calendar, or deadline reminders, and its collaboration tools are rather limited.

When it comes to GrantFinder, all that the platform offers is limited access to foundation profiles and the ability to reverse search for new funding opportunities.

GrantHub, on the other hand, helps users manage their applications with submission trackers, grant calendars, the ability to store notes, and collaborative features. However, they do not have their own database to search for and find funding opportunities.

GrantStation offers similar tracking tools while also giving its users access to funder information. However, it does not have any collaborative tools.

Finally, GrantWatch functions primarily as a database for active grants. While extensive and informative, the information they provide can be a bit difficult to discern, and the lack of reverse search can make the process take longer.

Only Instrumentl combines all of these features into one user-friendly platform. If interested, you can learn more about what makes Instrumentl unique on our comparison guide.

Instrumentl's Pricing Plans Examined

Instrument’s pricing plans are straightforward. There are four options to choose from:

  • The Basic Plan
  • The Standard Plan
  • The Professional Plan
  • The Custom Plan (best suited for hospitals, universities, and consultant agencies)
Instrumentl Pricing Plans

As you can imagine, the number of features provided increases with each plan. For example, the number of users and projects allowed per plan also increases depending on the payment options.

This gives nonprofits the flexibility to choose whatever payment plan is best suited for their needs.

Pros and Cons of Instrumentl

Pros and Cons

Before you can make an informed decision on whether or not Instrumentl is the right platform for your nonprofit, let’s take a look at some of its pros and cons.

Where Instrumentl Excels

As we have discussed numerous times in this article already, Instrumentl’s greatest strength is how it combines grant discovery, tracking, and management tools into one platform to streamline the entire grant process.

Instrumentl is user-friendly and efficient, aimed at providing the most amount of information possible in an easy-to-digest manner. Fundraisers can optimize their grant strategies and save time so that they can focus on crafting better and more personalized applications, helping them secure more funding for their nonprofits.

Balanced Comparison: Instrumentl's Pros and Cons vs. Competitors

Perhaps one of the first things that stands out about Instrumentl is its pricing plans.

When compared to its competitors, it is true that Instrumentl’s subscription is on the higher end, which can make it an intimidating prospect for nonprofits, especially those that are just starting out and do not have a lot of flexibility with their budgets.

That is a valid and understandable concern. However, despite its pricier subscription plan, many Instrumentl users find that the platform helps them secure a larger number of higher-paying grants in less amount of time, helping to make up for the upfront commitment. You may also check Instrumentl's Discount Codes.

User Reviews and Success Stories

User Feedback

Finally, it is time to see what real-life users have to say about Instrumentl.

What Users are Saying About Instrumentl

Looking at Instrumentl reviews at G2, a software review website, shows that Instrumentl has a 4.9-star rating.

Instrumentl reviews at G2

Some of the most talked about topics in these Instrumentl reviews include how the platform saves users time when searching for new prospects. Similarly, many reviewers also enjoyed the user-friendly interface and the amount of funder information provided by the platform.

Instrumentl User Reviews

Instrumentl’s educational resources are also considered a large value-add.

Instrumentl User Reviews

These positive reviews are echoed at Software Advice, where Instrumentl has 93 five-star ratings.

Instrumentl Software Advice Review

It is Instrumentl’s centralized approach to the grant process that makes it such a game changer to its users.

Instrumentl Ratings

Success Stories: The Impact of Instrumentl

Instrumentl’s impact can be seen through a variety of success stories.

Instrumentl Success Stories

Nonprofits everywhere have managed to secure more funding and change the world thanks to grant opportunities found on Instrumentl.

By learning more about specific grant funders and tracking and managing their proposals, nonprofits, both big and small, have seen the difference in their fundraising strategies by using Instrumentl.

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Wrapping Up: The Next Steps

Best Choice

Overall, Instrumentl is clearly the superior choice for grant seekers and nonprofits compared to its rivals.

Its combination of discovery and management features streamlines the grant process so that fundraisers can do everything in one place. You can start your free 14-day trial today.

Instrumentl team

Instrumentl team

Instrumentl is the all-in-one grant management tool for nonprofits and consultants who want to find and win more grants without the stress of juggling grant work through disparate tools and sticky notes.

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