A key reason projects fail to get grant funding is a lack of proper planning. It is rare that you can turn an idea into a winning grant application in the time between a grant round opening and closing. Ideas need to be converted into a properly planned project long before the grant opens.
Not sure where to start in developing a project plan? Follow these 5 Steps to Creating a Simple Project Brief and increase your chances of securing grant funding and successful delivery of the project.
Step 1. Identify the Problem.
Start with the problem that your project will address and then develop the solution. Projects that are developed the other way around lead to a project plan that does not clearly identify why the project is needed. If there is no problem then there is no project and no grant.
This is your WHY?
Step 2. Define your project.
What will your project do exactly? Describe exactly what the project will do – not why you’re doing the project or the benefits of it, just list what will be done.
This is your WHAT?
Step 3. Detail the Benefits.
What will the project deliver? This can be broken down into specific, tangible outputs like a physical building, a report or the hiring of staff and into the benefits of the project, such as improved health outcomes, economic benefits and so on.
This forms part of your WHY and should be directly linked to your problem. Your benefits will be to address your problem.
Step 4. Create a Task List.
What needs to be done to deliver the project and how long will each activity take? How much will each of these activities cost?
This is your HOW? It will be the basis of your project timeframes and budget when you are applying for a grant.
Step 5. Detail your stakeholders.
Go through each of the previous sections and create a list of who would be impacted by the project, who would be interested in it and whose assistance you would need to deliver the project.
This will be the basis for your stakeholder engagement and communication plan. It will assist you to determine if your project will collaborate with another organisation, will ensure that the project is inclusive and based on consultation and it will guide you when seeking letters of support.
When you have prepared a Project Brief you (or a grant writer) can use it as the base for preparing a tailored grant application. It provides the clarity and direction to ensure a well-written grant application and sets the tone for delivery of the project.